This retelling of the Danish Sagas by Poul Anderson is very true to the original, even to the point of starting generations before the title character comes on the scene. No one lives in a vacuum and one hero’s life has roots in the past.
Generations of betrayals and heroics led up to the point where Hrolf appears, and they all have a part in making his destiny. Our benefit is having someone like Poul Anderson to make the legends accessible to our time. I confess, though, that I liked Three Hearts and Three Lions better.