Children’s Book Reviews

Children's Book Review: Bog

Publish July 28, 2014

Trolls have had a bad rap. From the Three Billy Goats Gruff to the Lord of the Rings, they have been portrayed as ugly, sly, stupid, blundering, and evil. But that’s the human perspective. Turns out, trolls think much the same of us. They live in harmony with nature in the wild northern forests, while humans spread noise, waste, and pollution. In award-winning author Karen’ Krossing’s Bog, our hero fears and hates humans, but is forced to deal with them when some Troll Hunters turn his father to stone. Bog sets off to seek revenge, accompanied by a Hannie, a captive human girl, and Small, a large, good-natured troll. Along the way Bog learns some disturbing facts about his parents and is forced to confront his prejudice against humans. Bog immerses the reader in a fully-realized troll world. Krossing has given much thought to the details of troll life — their diet, hunting habits, family life and belief system. She draws humour from the grizzly details of a troll’s diet (barbecued mice, grubs and squirrels) and their standards of beauty (parents pull at a baby troll’s nose to make it longer). But she has also created a world where good and evil are not easily defined; Bog is beset with disturbing choices and ever-present danger. Bog is a sympathetic hero with a kind heart and muddled emotions whose true quest is his struggle to live his life with honour and compassion. His journey of discovery is an exciting adventure story set in an exotic, unfamiliar world where trolls and humans have surprisingly similar challenges to overcome. Bog-Cover-fullBog By Karen Krossing 978-1-55455-315-0 Fitzhenry & Whiteside May 1, 2014 Ages 10 to 13 229 pages $11.95   Charis Cotter   Charis Cotter is a freelance writer who lives in Newfoundland. Her children’s novel, The Swallow: A Ghost Story, will be published by Tundra Books in 2014.   Logo-NoTypeThe National Reading Campaign publishes children’s book reviews  under a Creative Commons License. This review is entirely free to reproduce and republish online and in print. Credit must be given to the reviewer and the National Reading Campaign. Reviews can be edited for brevity only. Contact Us for more information.