Inspired by the Netflix release of the “Trollhunters” animated series this author picked up a copy of the original Guillermo Del Toro and Daniel Kraus book at the local library for a read. I had actually watched the first episode in the series, or rather enough of it to be inspired to read the book, and I can say this.
The Netflix series got EVERYTHING WRONG. Seriously, E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. Paladins are always human for one. The main character is raised by a single father, not a single mother. The sidekick is tall, not short. Blinky’s eyes are on tentacle stalks not imbedded in his skull. And Ms. Johannah M. ARRRGH!!! Of the noble line of Scottish ARRGH!!!s is ink black, (as opposed to the males coal black) not concrete grey. Really, it is as if no one on the Netflix project even read the books.
One might assume from this little rant that in the short partial day that this author has had the book I have grown quite attached to it. One might be right. Oh the book has its flaws. There is quite a bit of squick in a story about a war with trolls. There is the reference to what trolls do with the children they capture. The mental imagery can be gag inducing at times.
The characters are wonderful however. Everyone plays a role in the terror that strikes the town and while some of the story arcs are quite obviously set up from the beginning (yes we all knew he was a troll from chapter two) some twists take the reader delightfully (or squeamishly) by surprise. I would not suggest this book for very young children. Exposure to too much Shakespeare can be problematic after all. For everyone else though this is a great romp and I am looking forward to the next installments in the series. There is still the question of what happened to the protagonist’s mother hanging about. In a book with this many twists she didn’t just wander off with the vacuum salesman. Where did the basketball sized gallbladder go? What was the meaning of the artistic connection of the police officer with the bullet in his head and the ARRGH!!!’s embedded boulder?
(Okay, maybe Netflix didn’t get everything wrong but they did get all the important bits wrong. They haven’t even shown the numbered cats yet.)