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Oddkins: A Fable for All Ages

4.23  ·  Rating Details ·  1,140 Ratings  ·  121 Reviews
Blockbuster author Dean Koontz’s first novel for young readers, a beautifully illustrated and visually stunning story about a magical band of living toys who learn to overcome the fears we all face in the dark

Toymaker Isaac Bodkins created the Oddkins, a group of living toys, for very special children who face difficulties in life and need true friends. There’s Amos, the
ebook, 180 pages
Published September 4th 2012 by Mel Parker Books (first published September 1988)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Oct 21, 2008 Keith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I first read this book as a pre-teen I thought it might have perhaps been not just the best book ever, but the best THING ever. I was totally obsessed with it, thought it needed to be a movie, and went about choosing songs for the soundtrack.

As an adult, I've looked at it again and realized that of course, the thing it has going against it is that it's written by Dean Koontz. Dean Koontz is the sort of embarrassing hack that lends a certain stigma to his guess you'd call it "work"
Aug 26, 2013 Books rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a lovely book for readers of all ages, especially those young enough not to be afraid of the proverbial monsters under the bed! As a huge fan of Koontz’s novels for adults, I was highly surprised to find he wrote a book for kids as young as middle grade, but also a story that can be enjoyed by his most hardcore adult fans. In true Koontz fashion, the story is filled with shockingly evil characters, but well-balanced by good and absolutely adorable characters, as well as a few subtle lessons ...more
Karen B.
Sep 19, 2015 Karen B. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible-books
Oddkins: a Fable for All Ages --- I enjoyed this fable immensely. First, I commend the narrator of the audible book who did a wonderful job with all of the different voices. To read this only as a children's book would be a shame. For me Oddkins rates up there with The Velveteen Rabbit and The Little Prince in the underlying message about doing the right thing. One of my favorite parts was where Koontz paraphrases one of my favorite quotes when he says that to avoid evil one can't just be good, ...more
Sarah Eisele
Oddkins: A Fable for All Ages is written by Dean Koontz and illustrated by Phil Parks. This is a beautiful tale and Parks' illustrations are gorgeous. This fable begins with the kindly toymaker passing away and his wonderful toys -- Oddkins -- setting out on an adventure across the city in search of the new toymaker's shop, pursued by evil toys (from a previous maker).

I think we all had a toy that was magical for us, as children, and the Oddkins seem a natural extension of this idea -- created
Todd Russell
Dec 03, 2012 Todd Russell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
Did you know in 1988 Dean Koontz wrote a children's story? Ok, it's billed as a 'fable for all ages' but it's clearly aimed at the younger generation. Think Toy Story meets Small Soldiers meets something Tim Burton might have noodled around a bit on at breakfast and you have Oddkins. Ivan Bodkin is a magical toymaker who dies and leaves his merry band of talking, walking toys to fend for themselves against the bad toys in the basement (subfloor? sub-something?), led by a marionette with an attit ...more
Aug 14, 2013 Rissy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dean-r-koontz
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Solid 3.5 stars

I love children's books with a creep factor. They were some of my favorites growing up. Now,I have a child that lives for scary stories, but they aren't always easy to find for his reading/age level. This book will definitely fit the bill. Great illustrations (but not too many of them) and a well-written good vs. evil plot. The "good" characters were adorable and brave. The "bad" characters were nastier than I expected. The jack-in-the-box made me temporarily afraid of clowns (it'
I had hoped that Oddkins would be a fun Halloween read for my children. I was sad to find that it did not hold their attention at all. I ended up reading Oddkins on my own. Even though there is a definite creep factor in Oddkins I found the story lacking... I just didn't have an interest in what was going to happen next. The illustrations are a redeeming factor in this story, I more than once skipped ahead to see the pictures.
Jennifer Medlin
Jan 07, 2011 Jennifer Medlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember my father reading this to me as a child. I could hardly wait for the next night to hurry and come to hear the upcoming chapter. It made me laugh, cry and be afraid of the dolls under my bed...
It is one of the greatest memeories of my childhood and almost impossible to find but if you get the chance never pass up reading it. I think it will steal your heart too.
Jan 02, 2009 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this book when my 5th grade teacher introduced it to us, so much that I waited in a long line of people wanting to read this book. When I found out that it was no longer being published, I became even more determined to read it. Highly recommended!
Melanie Jackson
Nov 11, 2010 Melanie Jackson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oddkins is one of my favorite-- and quirkiest-- Christmas reads and shows Koontz diversity as a writer. Looking for a fun holiday read to share with children over five? This will fit the bill.
Jan 23, 2017 Liz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-books
Interesting but somewhat creepy. A classic struggle between good and evil.
Oct 26, 2016 Ktnace rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good children's book.
Ich habe dieses Buch mit meiner besten Freundin in einer Mängelexemplar-Kiste gefunden und weil wir schon lange mal wieder etwas gemeinsam lesen wollten, haben wir es uns gekauft.

Okay, also, was gibt es über dieses Buch zu sagen?

+ Es ist wirklich sehr kurz und lässt sich auch schnell mal zwischendurch lesen.
+ Es ist durchaus unterhaltsam.
+ Die Sprache war meistens sehr einfach, es gab aber zwischendrin immer mal wieder Passagen, die ich fast schon beeindruckend schön geschrieben fand.
+ Obwohl d
J.E. Rogers
Mar 20, 2013 J.E. Rogers rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Oddkins, which I just discovered, and devoured in less than two days, was published back in 1988. I’ve read other books by Koontz, but I hadn’t realized that he wrote children’s stories. Also, I, like many other readers, identify Koontz with horror fiction, but this is a falsehood since Koontz has written many different genres. Nevertheless, Koontz likes to get a bit dark, and the Oddkins is no exception.

We don’t really need to speak to the quality of the writing. The Oddkins is very well w
Mar 23, 2013 Amanda rated it liked it
The person who loaned me this book told me it was marketed as a fable for all ages but really might be a bit too scary for the youngest among us. Person also knew that I love me some fables, not to mention talking animals or toys, so I was excited to get into this book. Alas, it wasn’t ultimately my style, but it is a well-written book I could see working for a lot of people.

The plot is a quest where each member of the questing group gets at least one chance to shine. Although I was fairly certa
Cathy Ryan
Mr Isaac Bodkins, the toymaker, was dead. His magical toy animals, who he nicknamed Oddkins because they were odd (as in alive) and kin (because they were his family) were sad and scared. Isaac had made the toys especially for children who are suffering in some way and need a special and secret friend. A friend who will guide and support, and help them fulfil their potential. Isaac thought he had a little more time but died before he could talk to city toymaker Colleen Shannon about taking over ...more
Cheshire Public Library
Oddkins: A Fable for All Ages by Dean Koontz is a book that readers from elementary school ages through adults can understand and enjoy, with beautiful illustrations and a story that feels very real. Isaac Bodkins was a magical toy-maker who creates toys that can come to life in order to help children trough difficult times. He calls his creations Oddkins. However, Isaac has passed away sooner than expected, and before he could train the next toy-maker. The race is now on to see whether a good o ...more
I first read Oddkins when I was a kid. I don't remember exactly how old I was, but I must've been at least ten. I remember being frightened, but also very impressed, and absolutely enamored of the illustrations. So, when I saw it was available on Kindle, I picked it up without hesitation.

Oddkins is about a group of stuffed animals who have to go on a journey to find the new toymaker. There are toys bent on stopping them so the toy workshop will go to the forces of evil, instead. Meanwhile, the n
This review originally published in Looking For a Good Book. Rated 3.0 of 5

Initially I was going to refer to this as a dark version of Toy Story.  But Toy Story is actually pretty dark.  Instead, I would call this Toy Story with an edge.

Isaac Bodkins is an old toy maker who specializes in toys for special children who face extremely difficult lives and need an extra special friend.  The toys are called "Oddkins" due to the special living nature and the play on the toy maker's name.  But Bodkins
Sharon Tyler
Nov 07, 2013 Sharon Tyler rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oddkins: A Fable for All Ages by Dean Koontz is a book that readers from elementary school ages through adults can understand and enjoy, with beautiful illustrations and a story that feels very real. Isaac Bodkins was a magical toy-maker who creates toys that can come to life in order to help children trough difficult times. He calls his creations Oddkins. However, Isaac has passed away sooner than expected, and before he could train the next toy-maker. The race is now on to weather a good or ev ...more
Sep 29, 2012 Maxine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When you think of children's authors, you might think Rowling, Lewis, Seuss. But Dean Koontz? Definitely does not spring to mind. Yet, he did write a children's book and, you know what, it's pretty darn good. The Oddkins would best be described as a classic battle between good and evil. A good toy maker has been making toys, the oddkins, magical toys which come alive for children just when they need them. However, the toy maker is dying without having contacted his successor. If she is not conta ...more
Teresa TL Bruce
This delightful, scary, lighthearted, terrifying tale will resonate with every person who can still remember when their toys were real. It made me smile, laugh, grimace, cry (I'm not ashamed to admit), and say,"Oh, no!"

Be aware: the villains in this tale may be scarier than some young readers are ready for. (If you've read Koontz's other work, you can imagine what an evil marionette and Jack-in-the-box might do...)

Mar 05, 2009 Patrick rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
When I was a child, one of my teachers read this book aloud to us. I recall really enjoying it, and being vaguely amused that she was reading something so mature to us--not because a story about magical toys is mature, but because when Satan is the antagonist, it's kind of intense for kids.

(I was a weird child.)

The thing is, I couldn't remember the book's name, and it was such an odd story that for years I couldn't even figure out how to find it. Then, ages ago, someone started a LiveJournal com
Oct 26, 2013 Suz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-kid-lit, netgalley
Dean Koontz's fable is what would happen if "Toy Story" met The Velveteen Rabbit. When toymaker Isaac Bodkins dies, the magical toys he has created must make a dangerous journey to find the new toymaker that will take his place. The person they are looking for is Colleen Shannon, a toymaker who can accept her role and continue the work of making magical toys to help children. But there are dark forces at work to prevent Colleen from becoming the next owner of Isaac's factory. Evil toys trapped i ...more
Jun 06, 2014 Suzanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I requested this book as a fan of Dean Koontz, not knowing that this story was originally published in the 80's. For starters, I must say the illustrations were beautiful, and I regretted only being able to view them in a Kindle version. I think I would have preferred to have a hard copy of the book so I could have taken some more time to appreciate the illustrations. Granted, there weren't as many of them as there usually are
Alasandra Alawine
Very cute. It looks like a children's book but it doesn't have as many pictures as your typical children's book and has many more words.

When Issac Bodkins passes away before he can recruit a new "magic" toymaker his toys must make a dangerous journey across town to recruit Colleen Shannon themselves. Lead by Amos the bear, Burl the elephant, Skippy the rabbit, Butterscotch the dog, Patch the cat and Gibbons bravely set out. But not only do they have to overcome the weather, mean dogs and ally c
The Haunted Reading Room 2017 - Year of Lovecraft
Review of Oddkins by Dean Koontz
5 stars

What a delightful tale! Suitable in my opinion for almost all ages, beginning with middle graders on up (although emotionally mature elementary age children who are not scared of the monsters under the bed may enjoy it). “Uncle Isaac,” Isaac Bodkins, toymaker, has created a magical (literally) selection of toys; no, not all his toys, not even the majority. Just some-and these toys are exceptional-for they are designed, each one, to guide a child through th
A Reader's Heaven
(I received a free copy of this from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.)

Dean Koontz and kids books - I was interested to see what he would do with the idea and it wasn't bad at all.

The plot: Longtime toymaker Isaac Bodkins has the gift of creating toys that are alive - living, breathing, magical toys. When he passes away, the toys are forced to leave the shop they call home in search of the next toymaker.

However, things are never that easy. Below, in the sub-cellar of the shop, evil to
Jul 23, 2012 Aurora rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wer hat als Kind nicht davon geträumt, dass seine Kuscheltiere lebendig wären? In diesem Buch wird dieser Traum Wirklichkeit. Der Klappentext verrät meiner Meinung nach schon recht viel über den Inhalt, zumindest das Wesentlichste, worum es geht: Eine Auswahl an Kuscheltieren macht sich auf den Weg, den Nachfolger für Vater Isaak zu finden, den dieser vorab bereits dazu bestimmt hat. Bevor er diese Nachricht jedoch selbst überbringen konnte, starb er und übertrug die Aufgabe Amos, der als Anführ ...more
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Acknowledged as "America's most popular suspense novelist" (Rolling Stone) and as one of today's most celebrated and successful writers, Dean Ray Koontz has earned the devotion of millions of readers around the world and the praise of critics everywhere for tales of character, mystery, and adventure that strike to the core of what it means to be human.

Dean R. Koontz has also published under the na
More about Dean Koontz...

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“The only way we'll be saved is if we save ourselves. Good people can't triumph over bad people just by being good; they have to act.” 11 likes
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