Recommended children's booklists sorted by age or topic

Home > Curriculum Topic Booklists > History Topic Booklists > Vikings Topic

Vikings Topic

Viking icon
recommended vikings books for children

Best Vikings Topic Books For Children

Looking for the best books for the Vikings topic? From raiders and traders to myths and monsters, the Vikings history topic offers a hoard of fascinating themes and this list of recommended children’s books about the Vikings is here to help.

Dig into the mysteries of the Viking topic with recommended chapter books like Riddle of the Runes, She Wolf and Viking Boy, or get stuck into some non-fiction with the fantastic illustrated information book Viking Voyagers.

We’ve put together this list of the best Viking-themed children’s books to help readers take a voyage back in time to the Viking age.

SAVE 20% with Peters

Visit our booklists on Amazon

Support independent bookshops

Chapter books about the Vikings

Tony Bradman
Chapter book
A popular choice in KS2 classrooms. The action-packed narrative follows the story of Gunnar, the son of a Viking chief, as he sets out to avenge his father's death after an attack by rival raiders. Combining elements of history and mythology, this is a gripping story that brings the gruesome Viking period to life with all of its peril and gore.
Janina Ramirez
 & David Wyatt
Chapter book
A mystery story set in Viking times and written by historian and BBC broadcaster Dr Janina Ramirez. Alva lives in the settlement of Kilsgard with her mother, uncle, baby brother and pet wolf, Fenrir. After her father's disappearance, Alva finds herself following trail of runic clues as a puzzle unfolds that readers race to solve alongside Alva. Filled with historical details of vividly imaged life in Viking England, this is a gripping history mystery that will keep readers guessing
Jeremy Strong
Chapter book

There’s a Viking in My Bed is the hilarious story of Sigurd the Viking, who finds himself transported to a modern day seaside town in England. Will he be able to adapt to modern ways? This is a witty, light-hearted text to use to help draw out the differences between Viking and modern times and is a popular choice in lower KS2.

Ross Welford
Chapter book

Alfie is like any other nearly teenage boy – except he’s a thousand years old and can remember the last Viking invasion of England. When Alfie finds himself alone in the world following the death of his mother, he has to learn to trust newly found friends if he is going to succeed on his quest to grow old naturally.

Older primary children will enjoy this compelling and thoughtful race against time. With moments of laugh-out-loud humour, heartbreaking grief and high-octane action, this is a touching, truly unforgettable story of finding friendship and acceptance.

Tom Palmer
Chapter book Dyslexia-friendly

In the ‘Defenders’ series, best-selling author Tom Palmer brings together his passions for football and history in haunting stories that are ‘super-readable’ due to their accessible layout including a dyslexia-friendly font and tinted paper. In this story, football-lover Seth discovers that dark and supernatural forces are at play when he witnesses a horrifying Viking massacre in his local football stadium. Together with his friend Nadiya, it is up to Seth to put an end to the violence and save the town.

Dan Smith
Chapter book

She Wolf is a Viking adventure story set in the cold harsh winter of Northumbria, AD 866. Ylva (pronounced eel-va) witnesses her mother’s tragic death, which instigates her hunger for revenge – after all, that is the Viking way. Her target: the three-fingered man. Ylva has been taught to survive; no crying will do and with the Norse Gods on her side, she knows she doesn’t need anyone else to help.

Yet, things change when she comes across Cathryn and Bron, two strangers who seem just as preoccupied as she is. Trust doesn’t come easy for Ylva and the twists and turns along the way, make this is an edge-of-your-seat kind of story through which the reader learns just as much as Ylva does.

The descriptions in the book put you right there in the thick of it with the characters, and when a story involves survival against wolves, bears and brutal hunters, it very quickly becomes a book where you have to keep turning the pages to lap up the action. While I felt this may be more suitable for mature KS2 readers, there is no doubt that this is a master class in Viking culture, drama and suspense. Sheer brilliance from Dan Smith who is now a firm favourite of mine!

Barbara Henderson
 & Sandra McGowan
Chapter book

Set in the Viking era, The Chessmen Thief is an intriguing tale of 12-year-old Kylan’s quest to return to his mother having been captured by Norsemen when he was just 7 years old. However, with everything the Almighty keeps throwing his way, will he be able to make it?

Kylan – a thrall, a slave for a harsh and unforgiving craftsman – thinks all hope is lost and he will never get the opportunity to return to his home, the Southern Isles, to find his mother. His memory of her is beginning to fade, except her fiery red hair and an important message she gave him as she was whisked away… ‘The Isle of Lewis. It’s your home Kylan. Never forget it.’ When an opportunity presents itself, Kylan knows he has to summon all of his courage to ensure it doesn’t slip through his fingers. The Lewis Chessmen – which his master reluctantly let him help carve – are his only hope. However, great craftsmanship gains attention, including that of Sven Asleifsson, a cruel and barbaric Viking known throughout the realm.

Based on the real-life Lewis Chessmen (a group of distinctive 12th-century chess pieces discovered in 1831 on the Isle of Lewis), The Chessmen Thief is a great addition to existing Vikings-themed booklists – it does not shy away from subject-specific vocabulary, however, is an easy read and therefore may be a suitable choice for lower year groups within Key Stage 2. Barbara Henderson has carefully crafted the plot around the chess motif and the story is not overwhelmed with action and gore, as can often be the case with books written about this era. The narrative includes enough action to keep the reader engaged, however provides enough space for readers to wonder how the story will progress.

The book would particularly complement history topics for those teaching in Scotland, providing opportunities to find out about the Viking era closer to home.

Terry Deary
 & Helen Flook
Chapter book
Whitby, Northern England, 867. Edwin and Luke are young boys training to be monks. It's a quiet life, until one day the Vikings invade. The boys are terrified of the fearsome Danes, whose gods are even more terrifying warriors than they are. What will happen if the boys are caught?Terry Deary’s Viking Tales explore the world and mythology of the Vikings through the eyes of children who could have lived at the time. These stories feature real people from history and take place in some of the most recognisable Viking settings. This new edition features notes for the reader to help extend learning and exploration of the historical period.
Cat Weldon
 & Katie Kear
Chapter book

If you are studying the Vikings, the Viking gods and the myths and legends that surround them, then this is certainly an adventure story that will entertain and inform.

There is a handy guide to the nine worlds and to the different gods at the start of chapter two, cleverly woven in as part of Lotta’s revision before her first test as a Valkyrie – travelling to Midgard. The story weaves in the fictional names of the book characters with the real names found in Viking mythology and you need to have your wits about you to know which is which! This story will please those who like a good quest, an adventure story with plenty of nasty characters to love to hate and unlikely heroes to cheer on. It will particularly engage those readers who enjoy anything to do with the Vikings!

Shorter stories about the Vikings

Joe Todd Stanton
Graphic Novel
This highly appealing text is a hybrid between picture book and graphic novel. It follows the story of young Arthur, who embarks upon a quest to seek out the help of the Viking gods in relighting a fire before the villagers back home freeze to death. In return for their help, Thor sets his own quest for Arthur to complete. A highly engaging book that offers an introduction to Norse mythology.
Frances Durkin
 & Grace Cooke
Graphic Novel
This engaging book is a fun hybrid between graphic novel, activity book and information text. The story, told in graphic novel form, follows a group of friends who travel back in time and explore the period of the Vikings. At various different points in the story there are relevant puzzles, fact boxes, activities and project ideas. This book has a high visual appeal and is a great addition to your library of Vikings topic books.
Lari Don
 & Cate James
Short story collection
This volume contains 11 illustrated retellings of sagas, which are Viking stories that are characteristically gruesome but also filled with magic and treasure. The retellings in this collection are engaging, exciting and well pitched for KS2. The book contains colour illustrations and extra information pages that explain the history behind the Viking Sagas and how they come to be remembered today.

Non-fiction books about the Vikings

Marcia Williams
Graphic Novel
Get stuck into the fascinating world of the Vikings with Marcia Williams' comic style history of the Norse invaders and settlers. The historic tales are retold in a comic book style, with speech bubbles and many humorous details in both the text and illustrations that pupils will love. Encounter stories of raids, voyages, gods, monsters and fearsome warriors.
Mick Manning
 & Brita Granström
Viking Longship is a fascinating information text full of images, questions and captions that probe deeply into the world of Viking sea voyages. The book offers an appealing non-fiction text exploring Viking life from the point of view of the crew of a longship. With accessible text and engaging illustrations, this is a great addition to your library of books covering the Vikings topic.
Jack Tite

A hoard of information about the Vikings including aspects of their history, culture, mythology and legacy. Author Jack Tite digs deep into the topic to find the most interesting snippets of information, presented alongside stylised graphic illustrations and fold-out pages that give the pages an extra wow-factor, enabling an impressive tree of life diagram on one page, a lengthy longboat diagram on another and a detailed timeline on another still. Highly recommended.

Chae Strathie
 & Marisa Morea

Published in collaboration with The British Museum, this children’s information book offers a humorous and informative introduction to daily life in Viking times and has a high appeal to readers in KS2.

Through words and pictures, the book compares modern-day life for children to different aspects of daily life for the Vikings, including clothes and hairstyles, education, family life, animals, food and hobbies. The book sets itself apart from the myriad of other non-fiction texts about the Viking world, as each topic is viewed through the eyes of a child. Did you know, for example, that Viking children had to share a bedroom with farm animals?

This is part of Nosy Crow’s popular ‘So You Think You’ve Got it Bad’ series, with the other titles focusing on Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece. This is the kind of series that helps young readers to move beyond hard facts and begin to reflect on what life might have felt like for those living during other points in history.

SAVE 20% with Peters

Visit our booklists on Amazon

Support independent bookshops

Booklists you might also like...

Subscribe to our newsletter

Your Review

Stone Girl Bone Girl


Year group(s) the book is most suitable for:

Year group(s) the book is most suitable for:

Does the book contain anything that teachers would wish to know about before recommending in class (strong language, sensitive topics etc.)?

Does the book contain anything that teachers would wish to know about before recommending in class (strong language, sensitive topics etc.)?

Would you recommend the book for use in primary schools?


Curriculum links (if relevant)

Curriculum links (if relevant)

Any other comments

Any other comments