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The Troll King
     

The Troll King

by John Vornholt
 

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THE TROLLS OF BONESPITTLE AREN'T PRETTY,

and centuries of bad press have given them a rep for meanness. But the truth is that they are merely poor serfs -- underlings to the ogres, ghouls, and sorcerers who wield power.

Once upon a time, the trolls were great warriors, respected throughout the land. But then they were enslaved by a

Overview

THE TROLLS OF BONESPITTLE AREN'T PRETTY,

and centuries of bad press have given them a rep for meanness. But the truth is that they are merely poor serfs -- underlings to the ogres, ghouls, and sorcerers who wield power.

Once upon a time, the trolls were great warriors, respected throughout the land. But then they were enslaved by a power-hungry king, and now and told terrible stories about fairies, elves, and the other creatures who live across the Great Chasm.

Enter Rollo, a handsome young troll who is surprised when Stygius Rex, Bonespittle's ruler, passes through his village. Stygius is recruiting trolls to construct a bridge to span the Chasm. Rollo wants to sign on for the task -- but is he prepared for what really lies beyond the realm of the trolls?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A 14-year-old troll named Rollo rises to lead his enslaved race in rebellion against a cunning sorcerer in this fantasy with a rather insipid narrative. Stygius Rex, "the ultimate despot of Bonespittle," decides to expand his territory by building a bridge between his kingdom of gnomes, ogres, ghouls, trolls and such to Bonny Woods, home of their age-old enemy, the elves and fairies. Rollo, an apprentice bridge-builder, finds himself plucked from the ranks of "volunteer" labor to attempt a dangerous special assignment: flying. His surprise success earns him a spot on a scouting expedition to Bonny Woods, where he learns all is not as it seems; he befriends a fairy and faces a life-altering decision whether or not he should defy Stygius Rex. Vornholt's (Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within) lickety-split plot has some imaginative twists and turns, but they're beset by thickets of clich d characters. In the end, he convinces his downtrodden countrymen to join him in a showdown with the sorcerer and his henchmen, including the dread ghoul General Drool and a giant toad named Old Belch. An overabundance of exclamation points and clumsy prose (e.g., "Unable to do anything, Rollo froze with indecision"; "The trolls muttered and groaned, then they remembered that they were important") bog down the tale. The story ends with a cliffhanger that points to a sequel. Ages 10-14. (Aug.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 4-7-The trolls of the Dismal Swamp are the oppressed underclass of the land of Bonespittle, ruled by the evil sorcerer, Stygius Rex. They can only look back fondly to the times when they were free. Unlike most trolls, Rollo wonders why things have changed, and after he is conscripted to help build a bridge over the Great Chasm that separates Bonespittle from the Bonny Woods, home of the elves and fairies, he is able to take steps to improve the trolls' standing. Rollo learns how to fly, travels across the Great Chasm, befriends a fairy, and becomes the leader of a revolt against Stygius Rex. The first chapter that introduces the villain and his henchmen seems to be trying almost too hard to gross out readers, but then the action begins immediately with Rollo sneaking out of his house and standing up to an angry ogre. While the ending resolves Rollo's immediate problems, it leaves room for future adventures. The protagonist's underdog status, inadvertent success, and realistic coming-of-age make him an appealing character, and Vornholt gives his bad guys enough depth to show change. This book has appeal for fans of the author's "Star Trek" novels (Pocket), and the pacing and adventure make it a good choice for reluctant readers. This fantasy should be a popular addition to collections in which the genre is in demand.-Beth L. Meister, Queens Borough Public Library, Flushing, NY Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780743424127
Publisher:
Aladdin
Publication date:
08/28/2002
Edition description:
1st Aladdin Paperback Edition
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 7.66(h) x 0.63(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

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