The Oddling Prince

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 18 Jul 2018

Member Reviews

Interesting reads, it had its up and downs I was expecting the ending we got but wow... thoroughly enjoyed even if it took me awhile to pick it up I’m blown away
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So close to 5-stars. If not for two major plot points that really annoyed me near the end it might have made the coveted 5-star list. The Oddling Prince is compelling and has lovely writing; as I would expect from someone as experienced as Nancy Springer. There are some trips along the way in the story; but overall this is a great little book. Perfect to start a middle-grade reader off in the fantasy genre. 

Plot Points
There are a few moments in this book that really irritated me. The first is that we start off with a lot happening and no clue what is really going on. It takes about the first 20% of the book to really give context to why on earth some random elf comes and saves a king that he does not answer to (not a spoiler as it happens in the opening chapters). 
Then we are led into the typical 'back story' fill-in to catch us up. And it's done as flashback story being told to us. For those not aware this is a terrible way to give major plot points out! Yes even though Tolkien did it a lot; that doesn't mean it's a good literary choice. 
The final plot point that annoyed me I can't tell you about... it's a major spoiler. But, if you know my pet peeves in writing, you'll know that anything that's convenient or 'too easy' in plot really bugs me. Unfortunately Springer copes out and nearly ruins the whole book for me. But I got over it and would gladly continue on with the subsequent books in the series after getting to the end. It may also be that Springer chose to 'dumb-down' the story because of the age group it's geared at. I don't agree with this tactic (as kids are way smarter than we give them credit for usually); but it would make sense given the target age group. 

Characters
Springer has always excelled at great character development and The Oddling Prince is no exception. Our two lead males are so well defined that even though their names are so close to one another (Aric and Albaric) I managed to keep them distinctly apart in my head. Normally I would be annoyed by the similarities in their names (regardless of the reason) but because they are so clearly separate people with distinct personalities and dialogue I did okay.

Not a Romance!
Now you may laugh at my assertion that this is not a romantic story. It's actually quite emotional and has a lot of loyalty and love involved in it; but it's between two brothers and their parents, as opposed to with a romantic partner. I liked that the focus was on family and how it's sometimes difficult to reconcile people's actions with our love for them. This is really the core of what makes this a great book, there is no annoying or messy love interest; just a good clean story with a slightly weird family set-up that any child can likely relate to. Even the best of homes has its flaws and I think there would be a lot of things younger readers would be able to identify with in The Oddling Prince.

Overall
While not the best book in the world, The Oddling Prince is a solid read. It's quick for the avid reader and has some cute little moments. It can be a bit Lord of the Rings-ish at times--and there isn't anything mind shattering here for plot or characters--but it's perfect for any little boy or girl to read and get a flavour of fantasy. It would also be great read-aloud by a child or adult to a child. Springer has delivered exactly what I hope for from this level of story. 

Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.
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I am sorry but this was not my cup of tea. The writing was very archaic and hard to follow along with. It was extremely repetitive and I just could not get myself interested enough in it because it irritated me to no end.
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Huge thank you to Tachyon Publications and NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to review this book!

I think I gave this book more of a shot than I felt like it deserved. I wanted to stop reading pretty much as soon as I realised the entire thing was written in old English style but I kept going because I hate DNFing books that I plan to leave reviews for. But the more I read, the more I wished I had followed my first instinct.

Full (spoiler-y) review here: https://wmsreads.tumblr.com/post/184425024317/
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Well, that was disappointing. 

Let's be honest here: one of the biggest thing that caught our attention as readers is that cover. I mean look at it (it's gorgeous). Whoever designed this cover needs a raise. It so successfully convinced the high-fantasy/young adult vibe but with the best taste possible - it doesn't feel "indie" and is just...really well designed. The designer deserves a raise. 

I normally hate instant-love. It's always one of the biggest dealbreakers for me in a book, because I hate fast -paced relationships because those are extremely unrealistic. However, this book worked for me because Albaric and Aric's instant "hit-off" friendship is more realistic, which actually made this book better for me. But what really ruined this book for me was this book felt so...lost. It feels like each section is a different short story because this book had so many subplots with no central conflict. If only the story was as good as the cover. Such a shame. 

I received a free copy for an honest review.
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Extremely tedious and slow paced, however, I think it could be fun for the right reader which unfortunately is not me. I love stories with fae and magic and this was interesting with the medieval Scottish setting, but I just couldn't get into it. The characters weren't very developed and felt really flat to me, I couldn't bring myself to truly care about them. I loved the idea behind the story but the execution was very off.
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This story was beyond beautiful and so well written it was a first for me from the author and I’m so glad I took the chance to read this , exceeded all my expectations definitely need to re read it 
Stroy🤩🤩🤩🤩🤩
Characters 🤩🤩🤩🤩🤩
Writing style 🤩🤩🤩
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This was such a lovely and enjoyable read! The story follows a young prince who meets his half Fey brother. I won’t spoil anything else for you. The writing is reminiscent of an old fairytale and the relationship between brothers is truly beautiful. If you’re looking for a whimsical fairytale in a medieval but gentle time, you’ll love this. 

Thank you to the publisher for giving me an ARC of this book, all opinions and thoughts about the book  are my own.
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The Oddling Prince is a fantasy fiction tale of two brothers, from different worlds, who must work together to save the father they both love. Aric is the heir to the throne of Calidon; Albaric is also the son of the king (born when the king was under an enchantment). Albaric, who has always longed to be loved and accepted by his father, willingly sacrificed much to come to Calidon and work alongside his brother for the good of the King. Scorned by his father and loved and accepted by his brother, Albaric, alongside Aric, must work to continue to protect the throne from the growing darkness.

I wasn't super impressed by the novel. Although the beginning is exciting, the rest of the book never drew me in. To me, it seemed a little shallow. Admittedly, the prose and style was unique, but the characters weren't deep (falling instantaneously into brotherly love), and the plot wasn't engaging in my opinion. Honestly, I'm a sucker for any interesting story, but this one didn't capture my attention.

I received a free copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Netgalley and Tachyon Publications for the ARC!
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I feel like this is a book that people will either love or hate.

It follows our main character Aric (Yes! Finally a male protagonist in YA fantasy) and he is the young prince of a lonely kingdom in Northern Scotland. His father, the king, is dying because of a strange and spooky ring around his finger but luckily, a fae (that's right! Faeries!) suddenly appears and saves the king by removing this ring. Well, not all is what it seems when history reveals itself. I really don't want to spoil anymore than that.

While the writing was pretty gorgeous and extremely detailed, it was clunky to read for me. I kept stumbling over words which is very unlike me. It's definitly the style of writing this author has. It just doesn't mesh well with me. The plot was also a little too hastey. It definitly reads like a fairytale but I didn't have time to grasp the situation the characters were in. Also the characters.. I wanted to love them but man, the relationships seemed so unrealistic and too clingy. You see, I think people will either think the main relationship will be "Aw, so cute and warm hearted!" or like me "ehhhhh, no.."

All in all, very descriptive writing but there was something about the story that I struggled to connect with.
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I liked about this new story from Nancy Springer, but it didn't quite live up to my expectations. My favorite aspect is definitely how the fey are portrayed, but unfortunately I didn't find myself invested in the either of the leading characters.
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First off, I was sold on The Oddling Prince solely based off of the setting. It is at the top of my bucket list to visit Scotland, but for now I will settle with visiting through the pages of a book. I loved the medieval, Celtic Kingdom and Nancy has an absolutely beautiful writing style, perfect for the genre and feel of this particular story.

The Oddling Prince features a very strong brother bromance which is the heart of this character-driven story. Unfortunately, it felt forced and unbelievable, too much like an insta-love. In addition, the plot felt unorganized and sporadic. Though overall I enjoyed the book, I felt more was needed to be given above a 3 star review.
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This was a DNF for me! I'm so sorry to say. By the time I went back to it to give it another go the book had been published and I couldn't view it anymore. 

I promise to give it another chance! In defense of the book, I was in a fantasy slump at the time and nothing was really helping me.
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This was difficult for me to rate. The story and relationships were wonderful, and even though the writing style was beautiful, it simply wasn't for me. 

Thank you to NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I like books that shows a brother love. Usually they always involved sisters. 

I wasn’t expecting much of this novel, so I’m pleasantly surprised that I didn’t hate it. 
There were times that I found that that were to much information and description pf places and things that I really didn’t care about. 

Taking that off, this is a book that I recommend if you like a end that will male you mad and sad at the same time.

3/5 stars.
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I've seen tons of three-star reviews about this book on Goodreads. Tons. However, after reading it I feel I have to take it in my hands to do justice to The Oddling Prince because to me it didn't come across as mediocre as review writers generally make it out to be.

There are two princes in this story who share a strong bond. One of them, Albaric, is from a faraway land. He comes to Calidon to save the king's life, yet his motive for the heroic act upsets king Bardaric a good deal after his recovery. Aric, the prince of Calidon, tries to shield Albaric from his father's wrath but the king's behaviour pains the foreign saviour none the less. Still, when the kingdom is threatened by inside and outside forces alike, everyone must stand on the same side to prevent its demise.

Going into the book knowing that it is a fairy tale and a celtic one at that, I expected nothing less from the writing style than to reflect the genre and the historical quality. Ms Springer's sentences are beautifully composed and her descriptions are nothing short of poetic. It's true that some might find the style a little dense, hard to get used to, but it all depends on the person's reading history and even if it's new to someone it doesn't mean it can't amaze after getting through the initial bumps while getting accustomed to it in the beginning. 

I actually saw some reviews that say The Oddling Prince is written in 'old English'. Old English is what Beowulf was written in, even native speakers cannot really read and/or understand it now. Talk about exaggeration...

The truth is, this is a character-driven novel and those who pick it up to read action packed fantasy fiction can be disappointed. It is not usual for a fantasy story to lean that heavily on its characters vs the plot and therefore it was a risky choice from the author, but believe me when I say that it works in this case. There is little travelling in the novel, basically there is one setting (the castle) but it feels enough (the only part when the princes left the castle seemed superfluous to me to be honest). 

There's some sword fighting though and dangerous situations at times, the book doesn't completely lack action, only it's not as important in it as the relationship of the characters.

Speaking of characters... We have a male protagonist, which is very rare in YA. Aric is endlessly kind, goodhearted and caring. He doesn't have one bad quality. Many reviewers deemed him flat, but again, we are talking about a fairy tale – the genre is not exactly famous for complex characters, since very often these tales are based on a fight between good and bad and there is no in between. Aric's one-sidedness was therefore absolutely acceptable to me. His love for Albaric warmed my heart.

The ladies of The Oddling Prince were so lovely! Aric's mother and his bride, Marissa, were both smart and wise and they understood their male companions so well. They had so much strength and insight, they were my favourites. 

As you can see I liked The Oddling Prince a lot and this was me trying to defend its merits. I just thought it deserved a champion and it might as well be me...
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This is a riveting adult fantasy with a plot that is much simpler than it feels like while reading. It’s a quick read that I could hardly put down.
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I love all the brotherly love in the book. Plus the plot is pretty new for fantasy books lately. The main characters were okay.
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Mini review:

DNF

I received this E-ARC via the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

I was excited to read this! I didn’t like it. 

The writing was very frustrating! It irked me to the point I couldn’t finish this. 

Still recommend.
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Fantastically descriptive. This author really makes this book come alive with the incredible world building. Would happily read this book again.
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