The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 29 Jan 2019

Member Reviews

I liked it in the beginning (and it was as quirky as the blurb promises then), but proceeds to devolve into one of those sickly-sweet saccharine "everyone gets a happy ending!" ~wholesome ~ plots, that I..... am not interested in, at all, especially since I barely knew the characters and it didn't feel like any of them actually deserved it.
Was this review helpful?
I wanted to like this book so much, because the prose felt truly unique. But ultimately the characters were just too unrelatable for me to want to keep going.
Was this review helpful?
This has to be one of the uniquest books I have yet to read. It has been a while since a novel has made me think about life and the way we see it so thoroughly and I could not be more grateful for it.

When Oskar moves into the small village of Keinefreude to get inspiration for his new art collection, he doesn't expect his whole world view to change, but it does. As someone who has lived on the streets since age 13 before he got his break in the art world as a child prodigy, he sees life in a rather pessimistic light. He's used to using people for his own benefit to depict their sorrows and downfalls, but everything changes when he tries on new glasses which show the world in a bright heavenly light. 

The book follows his journey from a rather awful human being into someone who brings joy to Keinefreude - a bleak and grim place beforehand. All in all, a quite inspirational story!
Was this review helpful?
this is one weird book! a very interesting crossover that breathes life into the genre at first, but then it fell flat for me - by the end, it seemed as though the story was just tying up loose ends and making sure every character was happy. it didn't quite work.
Was this review helpful?
The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick by Hattie Holden Edmonds is the kind of book my twelve-year-old self would look for at the library. It has a way of implying that we all belong in this dark, scary, and confusing world. I suppose you could interpret the focus of the book on how our world can be transformed or altered by our perception of it. Everyone has their own definition of what beauty is, but our opinions can be reshaped by how the world treats us and the injustice and the confusion of it all.

I warmed up to Oskar from the very beginning of the book. He has this whimsical way of expressing his dark feelings. He’s the kind of guy you sort of what to be friends with just to listen to his wild theories on how misery and pain are beautiful. He’s a type of character I would see in a Tim Burton movie. (Also, I couldn’t help but imagine the aesthetic of the book. Many dark grays, blacks, and a hint of red and blues.)

I will not lie, at times I got very into the story, and there were moments that excitement and thrill sort of faded away. It had its ups and downs. But I suppose it just has to do with my personal taste.

I enjoyed the book very much. I enjoyed the writing, the characters, and overall the concept. I would recommend it to anyone who into dark, but funny narratives.

3.6/5 for The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick by Hattie Holden Edmonds

Thank you to NetGalley and RedDoor Publishing for this advanced readers copy in exchange for an honest review. It was a great experience receiving my first ARC!
Was this review helpful?
2,5 stars, that I'll just round up to 3. 

I liked it in the beginning (and it was as quirky as the blurb promises then), but then it devolves into one of those sickly-sweet saccharine "everyone gets a happy ending!" ~wholesome ~ plots, that I..... am not interested in, at all, especially since I barely knew the characters and it didn't feel like any of them actually deserved it. 

For example, from the blurb: "Will it be an easy ride? Hell no." Except even the baker lady (I still can't tell all the Fraus apart) gets a deus-ex-machina random boyfriend, just so she'd have a happy ending too.

I even see the irony of my review. There's a part when Oskar talks to some TV channel cameras after a natural disaster, and the reporter tells him to act miserable and only talk about miserable stuff, "because that's what the people want to hear about" And here I am, talking about how the book was better when everyone is miserable (in the beginning) Yep. Ironic. But I'm not going to pretend to like the "Be happy!!! See the happy side!!" messgae that the book seems to promote, as positive as it is, because it's practically shoved down our throats.
Was this review helpful?
I could not finish this book. It was just too boring for me. 
50 pages in we get a little information about Oskar's objectives, which assumedly sets up the plot, but as far as I got, he'd only been confused by a pair of lens and annoyed some townsfolk. I didn't see the story getting any more exciting closer to where I could have managed to read more, it just seemed like this book was never going to pick up, and honestly? The plot struck me as not all that exciting?
Oskar is a quirky character, similar to Jackaby and other beloved characters alike, and I thought that I would end up really enjoying this story because of his character. But I just couldn't manage it. I hate giving up on books, but I couldn't see myself enjoying this book enough to trudge through the molasses of filler before things started picking up.
Was this review helpful?
This was such a weird little story, I really liked the plot and how I wasn’t really sure where it was going and how it was going to unfold. I think what you take from this book is entirely up to the reader’s perspective but I really, really liked it. I just wished there was a bit more structure? Is that the correct term? In any case, a solid 3.5 stars rounded up to 4!
Was this review helpful?
I didn't like this much.
I didn't like the story and the characters so I gave it a 1 star, sorry but thanks for the opportunity of reading this
Was this review helpful?
The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblink by Hattie Holdern Edmonds is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in early November.

In third person narration, Oskar lives a perpetually happy, joyful, Life-is-Beautiful, giddy Amelie existence, almost fueled by everyone else’s sense of glum; though he was once sardonic, depressed, and delighted at the fall of others, his vision is literally changed by glasses from a mysterious Dr Sehle and can see sunshine, interconnectivity, and the artist inside of him. It's all quite vivid and smart, but is too much like a multi-facetted German version of the forementioned movies (though not enough to exclude it outright), plus there's the drag of Oskar’s introspection, research analysis of Dr Sehle, choosing between two romantic partners, and his drug-dependant friend Franz.
Was this review helpful?
Travelling to a decrepit little town, other's call it bleak but Oskar thinks it's beautiful. He has a different out look on things, not only because he's an artist that tends to paint beautiful pictures of people's misery, but also because he's had a hard life. Living on the street since thirteen, he finally has an apartment of his own. His fridge is broken and he doesn't know how to light his wood stove, but it's his own home. 

He's a very peculiar person, not many friends, and thriving on other people's suffering. He wasn't always like this, but he has always been lacking compassion. He eats kinder chocolate every day for breakfast, but he's lost his passion for painting. He can't find anything he wants to paint, and that's a problem, because the gallery that pays him for his art, is also paying for him housing. That's when everything changes. 

He stumbles into a glasses shop, and though he has perfect vision, he wants decorative glasses. The man behind the counter tells him he'll give him a free pair if he takes an eye test, so why wouldn't he get his eyes checked? The man gives him a pair of tinted classes, and it changes his world. He sees everything in a completely different light, and it overwhelms him with emotions he doesn't usually feel: love and compassion. 

I really enjoyed getting to know the characters in this book, they're just so different than anyone I know personally, and anyone I've read about. Oskar makes friends, and comes to terms with a lot in his life, like his absent mother, his dead father, and his old school bully. While I couldn't exactly get sucked into the book, I still enjoyed it and am glad I got the chance to read it. My favourite character was of course Oskar, or Greta. They're very different from each other.

I imagined this book to be in a black and white world, the glasses being the thing that finally showed colour to Oskar, letting him finally live his life and feel the feelings that he's always shoved down. I think if you like stories that really show the characters becoming who you want them to be, you're going to love this.

Thanks for reading!
Was this review helpful?
A very unusual, interestingly-paced novel with a very memorable main character in Oskar. Prose was fascinating and flowed nicely. I enjoyed this book despite the plot being slightly confusing at times.
Was this review helpful?
The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick
by Hattie Holden Edmonds Is a decent  read. It makes for a fairly relaxed, gentle story. 

I enjoyed the writing and the characters. 

I warmed up to Oskar who started off by being a rather hateful character. I felt for him and I understood his torments most times. 

The book is centred around several theories alluding to the fact that we all belong and that our world is altered by our perception. It’s pretty cleverly woven into the story line and thought it worked well. 

However the plot itself felt a bit stale to me and I kept wishing it to go places. It’s probably down to my personal preference as much as anything else though. 

I enjoyed this, though didn’t LOVE it. 

3.5  so 4 stars. 

Thank you Netgalley and RedDoor Publishing for an advanced reading copy in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
"After four years on the streets, he prided himself on his bladesharp survival skills and his ability to adapt his language and behavior to almost any social situation."

This was definitely an impulse request. my NetGalley self-control is at an all-time low. c: 
That being said, I didn't necessarily dislike this, it's more like there wasn't enough substance???
The prose was beautiful and Oskar was an interesting character, but that's pretty much the only interest I had while reading this. The plot just wasn't doing it for me.
Was this review helpful?
The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick is the second novel released by Hattie Holden Edmonds and, if I’m not mistaken, her first foray into the young adult scene. Oskar Dunkelblick is labeled as an “anti-hero” with an inclination to focus on the morbid, grotesque, and general darkness of the world. Oskar is a teenage artist living Berlin, making money off the paintings of human misery he creates for a local art gallery; he prides himself on his ability to be disconnected from the world and to be able to capture such raw, human elements. 
	But all of this changes one day when Oskar receives an eye exam. All of a sudden, Oskar can see beauty amidst the darkness (much to his chagrin) and he is forced to reflect on past and life choices. He begins to feel guilt for the first time (and a few other emotions too) as he begins to notice the world around him and his interconnectedness to others.
Overall, I would say I enjoyed The Spectacular Vision of Oskar Dunkelblick though it took me quite awhile to get there. As an anti-hero, Oskar isn’t the most likeable character to read. He’s crass, he’s rude, and he chooses to do horrible things to people. However, this book shows the amazing capacity human beings have for growth in empathy and understanding, using metaphors and history from eyecare and eyewear to push along this growth. We watch Oskar grow from this selfish, depraved young man into something completely different. 
I had to keep in mind that this was a German book translated to English so phrasing and structure was a bit different than I’m used to when reading a young adult novel. However, I really didn’t mind after I grew accustomed to the style. I don’t know how much young adults will enjoy this book, though, considering it’s quite different. But, hey, maybe that’s what will draw readers to it as well? It’s very thought provoking and deep without treating difficult topics as “childish” issues. I think there will be a lot of respect for that in the YA community. 
I would give this book 3 out of 5 Awesome Austin Points. It was good, but it wasn’t AMAZING. I would only recommend it to certain people, those that I know will enjoy it, rather than a mass recommendation. However, if you want a YA book that’s a little more philosophical and supports spiritual and personal growth, then this is going to be a book you want to look into to reading!

I'll add a link to my live post on 10/28/18.
Was this review helpful?