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This book was specially written and published for World Book Day 2008. World Book Day is a worldwide celebration of books and reading. In 2008 it was their eleventh anniversary of World Book Day in the United Kingdom and Ireland. World Book Day is made possible by generous sponsorship from National Book Tokens, participating publishers, authors and booksellers. Booksellers who accept the £1 Book Token kindly agree to bear the full cost of redeeming it.
I used to be obsessed with World Book Day when I was younger, mainly because well-known children and adult novelists had contributed by writing a book especially for World Book Day. However recently things have changed and it is usually up and coming authors who write the books, which don't really interest me no more. Also there is normally two different books put together, one starting from the front, and one starting on the back, and they end at the middle, this usually infuriates me as there might be a short story I am really interested in, and the other story might be one I have no interest in what so ever. This usually really annoys me, especially since the two books tend to have nothing in common.
Neil Gaiman is quickly becoming one of my favourite authors, and it is all down to you people writing your reviews; otherwise I wouldn't have bought my first Neil Gaiman novel. I have most of his books added to my wish list, and I can't wait to read more. So Far I have read "The Graveyard Book", "Smoke & Mirrors", "Neverwhere", "American Gods", "Neverwhere the Graphic Novel", "Coraline", "Odd & The Frost Giants", "Stardust", "Interworld" and "Creatures of the Night". This is quite a collection of books I've read so far. He has a unique writing style that I can't help but read more and more of. He captures me every single time and the different stories he creates leaves me shocked that he's managed to write them perfectly. I really can't wait to read more from him.
Here's what the book is about..... The winter isn't ending. Nobody knows why. And Odd has run away from home, even though he can barely walk and has to use a crutch. Out in the forest he encounters a bear, a fox, and an eagle. Three creatures with a strange story to tell.
Now Odd is faced with a stranger journey than he had ever imagines. A journey to save Asgard, City of the Norse Gods, from the Frost Giants who have invaded it. It's going to take a very special kind of boy to defeat the most dangerous of all the Frost Giants and rescue the mighty Gods. Someone cheerful and infuriating and clever. Someone just like Odd...
This is such an interesting book, and one that can interest both children and adults, and it's quite interesting. As with most of Neil Gaiman books, he produces so unique and something that can easily be remembered by many people, children easily can relate to Odd, and can definitely learn a lot from the key character. The animals are really interesting, and while I was reading the book I really wanted to be Odd, just for that split second. To be able to meet and talk to these amazing, but deadly creatures of the Earth would be fascinating and intriguing.
I like how Odd easily become friends with the animals, and also proves that we are the same as them, and although we may be higher up the food chart than they are, we are still afraid of them, and it really surprises me that we are more afraid of creatures, than we are of anything else. And I really like how it comes across in the book, and it is really incredible, that Neil Gaiman managed to think up this superb story.
About six moths ago there were rumours of a sequel for this book called "The Tales of Odd", and I believe the book was confirmed by Neil Gaiman. However as of recently there has been no more about it and all websites that mentioned the sequel soon deleted what they put. For example: on "Fantasticfiction.co.uk" they had the book cover along with a synopsis and the release date of the sequel, however now they don't and there's no sign of it anywhere, which is a little confusing, and the only thing I could think of is that Neil Gaiman or his publishers decided it wasn't a strong enough sequel or there wasn't enough hype around it. Whatever the reason, I think it's wrong and I really would like to read a sequel, but maybe it isn't meant to be.
This book also has illustrations in, which are really appealing, and works well with the book, and I really think children would be interested with them. They are illustrated by Mark Buckingham. He is a well-known comic-book illustrator, and is best friends with Neil Gaiman, in fact.... Neil Gaiman served as his best man during his wedding in 2006. So I think they must have enjoyed working together. If these drawings are anything to go by, he is really good at what he does, and children would be definitely interested in the drawings.
Overall this book is an entertaining read for both adults and children, and I bet most people would be interested in reading it. It would be nice to see more reviews on this book, as I know I can't be the only one who's interested in this book. And for the Neil Gaiman fans who are worried that his children's books aren't as good as his adult novels, then I suggest you give them a go, otherwise you'll never know the answer, but in my opinion, I think they are just as good, although they are shorter due to the fact that he is interesting kids, and not adults.
Odd is a young Norseman, with the misfortune of having a gimp leg whose father, a woodcutter, drowned during a Viking raid some time back. His mother remarried to a fat widower who cares little for the boy as he has his own sons.
When the winter seems to last longer than normal, Odd decides to leave for the forest, where he comes across a bear, who got his paw trapped in the tree. He helps the bear and meets an eagle and a fox, who tell him they are in fact the gods Loki, Odin and Thor, who had been outcast from their hom Asgard by the Frost Giants who managed to trick Loki to giving them Thor's hammer.
Odd decides to travel with them to Asgard and return things to normal, before the winter goes on for longer and kills his village.
This was written for the World Book Fair, and is quite small a book, with quite large font, meaning there actually isn't a great deal of story in it. While it's a good idea and it's certainly written in Neil Gaiman's usual mystical, fantastic style, it just seems to be lacking something.
It's too big a story to be put in such a small amount of space and for that the story suffers a lot. I'm usually a huge fan of Neil's, but this time I think it could have done with a lot more work. It's not that it's a bad story, just a bit empty. There's room for a lot more character development than he actually put in.
However, despite this, it was enjoyable to read, if only a bit short lived. Admittedly it was written for children but, like all his children's books, it is definitely accessible to adults. Or would have been, if it had been fleshed out more.
This was brought for me as a gift; I'd never even heard of it!
Again I got through this one in a day but only because its defiantly a kids book and really short!
Odd is a Viking boy, whose village is suddenly locked in an eternal winter. The only thing that really differentiates Odd is that he is crippled and doesn't get on with his step father; he's a bit of a Norse Cinderella.
With the help of three mysterious beasts, and some peculiar memories of his father, Odd sets out to find Valhalla and save the gods from the peril of the frost giants.
I suppose in many ways this story has all the elements a kids book should have; friendship, bravery, being true to yourself, and al that jazz.
In many ways it feels as though this story was a little forced and could have been a lot longer. It wasn't nearly so weird as any of Gaiman's other kids stuff, but I feel it has missed out on being a lot more; the story could have been developed and a lot more could have been had with the characters; Gaiman always manages to bring out the best in God characters and these weren't exactly prime specimens!
I usually do a bit on illustrations, but I wont say much this time; if you cant say something nice... The images were simple, lacked any sort of real character and didn't really live up to the standard I'm used to being served with my main course of Neil Gaiman!
Odd's luck has been bad so far. He lost his father on a Viking expedition, his foot was crushed beneath a tree, and the winter seems to be going on forever. But when Odd flees to the woods and releases a trapped bear, his luck begins to change. The eagle, bear and fox he encounters reveal they're actually Nordic gods, trapped in animal form by the evil Frost Giants who have conquered Asgard, the city of the gods. Can a twelve-year-old boy reclaim Thor's hammer, outwit the Frost Giants and release the gods?