Skald: The Short Story Collection

Commissioned by Audible and written especially for audio format this collection brings together six crime stories through the themes of discovery, destination and arrival. Top narrators bring these gripping tales to life acknowledging the Scandinavian tradition of oral storytelling.

In this collection Ben Okri and Martin Edwards explore ‘discovery’ in their stories; Sophie Hannah and Emma Dibdin each draw on ‘destination’ for their tales of painful pasts; and Elly Griffiths and Parker Bilal tackle the theme of ‘arrival’ in their stories.

Skald is one of three short story collections written by our favourite best-selling novelists and emerging authors, and curated based on the themes of arrival, discovery and destination. Jali collates science fiction tales while Bard collates contemporary fiction.


(Audible Studios, 10 April 2018, audiobook, 4 hours 30 minutes, various narrators, Audible)



  • Catch of the Day by Martin Edwards
  • The Multiverse Murder by Ben Okri
  • Bully the Blue Bear by Sophie Hannah
  • The Break by Emma Dibdin
  • Turning Traitor by Elly Griffiths
  • The Zephyr’s Apprenticeship by Parker Bilal




I had a great time listening to these stories.

The stand-out stories for me were Bully the Blue Bear by Sophie Hannah and The Break by Emma Dibdin.

Hannah’s story weaves bullying, alleged suicide and probable murder to startling effect. I found this story gripping, dark and a bit twisted. Dibdin’s story is an astonishing portrayal of someone’s gradual decent into madness and how this affects their family. The first-person narrator works really well.

I thought Turning Traitor was really good, another first-person narrator with a compelling story. The story has a lot of sad moments.

I liked The Zephyr’s Apprentice which uses organised crime and betrayal to tell a powerful and quite gristly tale.

I enjoyed Catch of the Day. The story starts well but weakens towards the end but there is some good stuff there. The Multiverse Murder did not work for me on any level and left me cold.

Skald contains some pretty good stories and I hope Audible do something similar in future.



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