Review of Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman

SFFaudio Review

Fantasy Audiobook - Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil GaimanOdd and the Frost Giants
By Neil Gaiman; Read by Neil Gaiman
Audible Download – Approx. 1 Hour 46 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Harper Children’s Audio
Published: September 2009
Provider: Audible.com
Themes: / Fantasy / giants / Scandinavia / Norse mythology / winter /

Odd (a Scandinavian name meaning tip of the blade) is a boy living in long ago Scandinavia. After his father dies, he is accidentally crippled, his mother remarries a bully, and winter extends into the months of spring, Odd’s life doesn’t seem as if it can get worse. Odd decides to go live in his father’s cabin in the woods. An otherworldly adventure begins when a fox fetches him to rescue a bear whose paw is stuck in a tree.

This charming, simple story takes us into the world of Norse mythology, acting almost as a primer on the characters of Thor, Loki, Odin, and Freya. And, of course, we learn about the Frost Giants. Written for younger children, it is nevertheless a fresh, well paced story that held my interest quite well. It could well interest readers enough to explore the Nordic myths for themselves. Above all, it is the story of a gentle, kind, intelligent boy who has had terrible events in his life but who does not let those events define how his attitude toward life.

The audiobook was read by author Neil Gaiman who, as always, does his story full justice. He has a particular talent with using accents to define character that is a joy to hear. There is also something wonderful in hearing an author read his work so that listeners know just how he imagined it.

Neil Gaiman is a master story teller and this tale, no matter what the intended age, is enchanting. Recommended for younger readers and the young at heart.

Posted by Julie D.

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Scott D.

Reviews Editor, SFFaudio

One thought to “Review of Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman”

  1. The thing that makes a new Neil Gaiman audiobook different from other audiobooks is that it will make you drop pretty much whatever else you’ve been listening to.

    But, no matter how you slice it this is a relatively expensive audiobook, either through Audible.com or on CD. That’s a real shame. As a kid I bought a lot of my own books and I’d have a hard time justifying spending $10 for an audiobook of about 100 minutes.

    On a non pricing related note, Gaiman said this of the audiobook:

    “The best bit of today was reading ODD AND THE FROST GIANTS aloud for the audio book. (It’s short enough that I could do it in an afternoon, and it will be about 90 minutes long when it’s released). I discovered that the first chapter is a bugger to read aloud — no dialogue and great big run-on-sentences that were a delight to write for me the author and a serious pain in the buttocks to read aloud for me the reader; and I discovered that I love doing my gloomy bear voice (which is pretty much the voice I read Eeyore in, when I read the Pooh books aloud over the years), and the fox-telling-a-story-in-which-he-does-other-characters, and the Frost Giant himself, who is never quite as posh as he thinks he is.”

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