The Oddling Prince by Nancy Springer
Publication Date: May 15, 2018
Summary from NetGalley:
In the ancient moors of Scotland, the king of Calidon lies on his deathbed, cursed by a ring that cannot be removed from his finger. When a mysterious fey stranger appears to save the king, he also carries a secret that could tear the royal family apart.
The kingdom’s only hope will lie with two young men raised worlds apart. Aric is the beloved heir to the throne of Calidon; Albaric is clearly of noble origin yet strangely out of place.
The Oddling Prince is a tale of brothers whose love and loyalty to each other is such that it defies impending warfare, sundering seas, fated hatred, and the very course of time itself. In her long-awaited new fantasy novel, Nancy Springer (theBooks of Isle series) explores the darkness of the human heart as well as its unceasing capacity for love.
ARC provided by Tachyon Publications via NetGalley for an honest review.
This was a totally different take on the fae and I found it to be a beautiful story full of love and understanding. It is about two brothers who find each other and will do what ever it takes to keep each other alive. It is historical fiction with a touch of magical realism.
Aric is the prince and only child of Queen Evalin and King Bardaric. He is often described as young and unsure, and people worry that he will not be strong enough to be king. Albaric is the fae son that the king does not remember. Raised in Elfland, but not loved there, he comes to help the king recover from his illness. The king takes an instant dislike to Albaric and can not understand his son’s fascination with him. What unfolds is a wonderful story of loyalty, what it means to be brothers and doing everything with in your power to save the ones you love.
Aric was a fascinating character with a lot going for him. He was a young man on the brink of adulthood, but unsure of his place in life. He was devoted to his king and his people, but wasn’t sure he wanted to be king.
Albaric was also a great character. Half fae and half human and totally out of his element. He knew next to nothing of the human world when he arrived, but was determined to get the king to notice him and perhaps love him as he did in Elfland.
The story centers around Aric and Albaric’s relationship, and how they save the kingdom and the King and Queen from death and destruction. It is historical fiction set in Scotland and the setting is just beautiful. There is a small romance, although it is very period appropriate. Lady Marissa is the daughter of a rival kingdom, and a seer. She is a delight, and I loved see their relationship develop.
The writing is suburb and you really feel like you are there with all of the sights and sounds of medieval Scotland. The magical realism is not overpowering but adds a nice subtle touch to the story. The ending was not at all what I expected, but beautiful and perfect.
A beautiful and riveting story of loyalty and what it means to be brothers. Although slow at times, it is a truly magical story that should not be missed.