I really like Neil Gaiman; I probably can’t articulate why quite as well as Nymeth has in her recent post, but I have never read anything that he has written that I didn’t enjoy, and that includes his blog. So you won’t be surprised that I loved Odd and the Frost Giants, which was written for World Book Day.

Odd lives with his mother and stepfather, and has walked with a crutch since he injured himself soon after his father died at sea. At a time when winter doesn’t seem to want to end, Odd runs away from home to fend for himself in his father’s hut in the woods. There he comes across a bear, a fox and an eagle who have a bit of a problem (and then some), so he decides to help them.

If you know anything about Norse mythology you will enjoy this story. There are interesting little details, for example the eagle only has one eye, which point you in the right direction as to who the animals really are. And once these three are identified as Thor, Odin and Loki, who have been thrown out of Asgard, the question is will a 12 year old really be able to help?

How he manages to solve everyone’s problems. start the thaw and build a future for himself is really enjoyable. It’s a short book but Gaiman packs a lot into it; much hinges on whether you like Odd or not and I really did. Another triumph for Mr G.

This has been my third read for the Novella Challenge.