Odd might seem like an unusual name, and even though it’s actually quite a lucky one in the Viking village he grew up in, there’s no denying that Odd has taken some of the qualities of his name to heart. After his father dies unexpectedly in a freak ‘pony-overboard’ incident after a raid, Odd becomes even more so, wandering off into the forest and smiling quietly to himself in an infuriating fashion that his new stepfather and siblings cannot abide. But as every myth-lover knows, wandering alone in a forest can only lead to adventure… Enter Thor, Loki and Odin in bear, fox and eagle guises respectively, who whisk Odd off to Asgard on a mission to retrieve Thor’s hammer from a Frost Giant and restore the Norse gods to their former glory.
Originally published in 2008, this beautiful new hardback edition boasts a brand new format and gorgeous illustrations by the current UK Laureate Chris Riddell. The attention to detail in production is wonderful, from the cut out front cover to the silver accents on every page. Gaiman’s take on Norse myth is full of touches of oddness (no pun intended) and humour that makes the action feel magically authentic, and the world of the book is only enhanced by the addition of Riddell’s fine illustrations, which bring characters and landscapes to life. This is one of Gaiman’s finest stories for children and would make an excellent gift for adults and children alike.