Book Review: Goblins by Philip Reeve

Goblins by Philip Reeve is a children's fantasy book. In this world there are goblins, heroes, princesses, ogres, giants, and all the creatures that one might expect but the magic has been fading slowly from the world. Here, the goblins of Clovenstone Keep are a bloodthirsty and greedy. But Skarper is different, he prefers reading to fighting and it is his intelligence that flings . him headfirst into the wildest adventure in all of goblin history. With the help of a wannabe-hero, a middle-aged princess, and a few bumbling wizards, Skarper must fight to save the world.

Goblins is a fun twist on the traditional fantasy quest story. Skarper, the main character, is flawed and just happens to be a goblin exiled from his clan for being too smart and questioning his king. The rest of the group that slowly comes together is equally flawed, which makes them more interesting and relatable for readers of all ages. Henwyn is a cheese wright that feels like he is meant for more, but does not seem to be all that natural at playing hero. The three men attempting to be sorcerers and wield magic are not terribly bright, brave, or magically inclined. The princess Henwyn is hoping to save turns out to be anything but typical, and one of my favorite characters in the book. Princess Ned is the one I related to most myself, both being pragmatic and of a certain age. The different take on a magical world that has become accustom to fading magic dealing with the consequences of that magic returning was far from cliche and a highly entertaining read.

Goblins was a wonderful children's fantasy book. It was not all that I expected from Philip Reeve, since his past work has led me to set very high standards for his work, but it was still a above average read. Anyone that loves fantasy fiction, particularly quests that break the mold, will be very happy with the book.
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