With this review, I’ve hit my Quarter-Cannonball goal! And I did it before the end of December this time!
I notice something I’ve never noticed before. Oddly always wears a star on her shirt, as does her Auntie Oddly. The more “traditional” witches wear a crescent moon as their symbol. Auntie Oddly cements her awesomeness. She’s obviously very powerful, although she sometimes seems a little sad despite her effervescent personality.
We get to see something lovely. Auntie shows Oddly a memory of her parents so she can experience her mother’s love. The lovely moment doesn’t last too long, though! And then Oddly get an invitation via a poorly designed self-aware robot! (And her last line is kind of awesome.)
Here we learn more about Oddly’s friends. There’s a bit of sadness in each one of them. No one has parents that are around, or in Misty’s case, at all. Reggie was created as an experiment in creating artificial life, Ragnar is obsessed with science and the “real” world, and Misty loves to dance, which is only acceptable for males in ghost culture.
After learning that it was recently Oddly’s birthday, the gang enters “The Closet” in search of a birthday gift. Oddly tells them her story as well. We learn about Ragnar’s parents – his father was pursuing artificial life while his mother was preserving the natural one. And we get to meet Oopie! Oopie is the best thing ever. It’s kind of like a Pikachu, only more awesome, and probably more annoying to Oddly. And Oddly also performs an act of kindness to someone we meet in Chapter 8.
Here we go back to school and the confusion that is lessons. The different subjects seem to intertwine with similar themes: belief, repetition, and good versus evil. We also see that Oddly’s favorite comic book hero, Tommy Tsunami, is just as inaccessible here as when he was just ink on a page – he’s popular, and she’s one of the misfits.
We get some lovely and emotional scenes in Book 2. Color plays a visual role in the physical location and emotional state of the characters. We see quite a few flashbacks in Book 2. (Mr. Crabula is the wise teacher whose advice you should really follow, but never really do. His wisdom is realized in hindsight. Sadly, he does not appear in Book 3.) And there are some very clever lines as well. Oddly is learning more about who she is and where she came from. She’s also learning about this new world that she’s in, which may provide more life lessons than she was expecting. She’s learning the value of friendship, something she’s never had before. And as she learns, we are reminded of our own lives and lessons.
And now, a question for Otis Frampton: “Why does Misty wear shoes?”