Last month I read Tooth Goblins by Ash Toroid (pen name), an author I met during a Meetup. It was a different type of story to what I normally read – there were fairies, goblins and humans. Oh, and Merlin/Merlyn. It’s only Available on amazon as a paperback or Kindle book, as the author doesn’t want to distribute elsewhere.
The backcopy/blurb of the story doesn’t do it’s story justice, so here’s my rundown instead:
Tooth Goblins opens with six year old Ellie worried about her brother, Duncan. He’s about to turn thirteen, and so she creeps into his wardrobe to watch over him as he sleeps, because their parents said he would get grumpy and selfish, and because she wants to see if she can see this change happen. Whilst in the wardrobe, she finds a magic wand her brother was given by their grandfather.
Goblins come through a portal and with a clone of her brother, and as she watches, they swap her real brother for a clone. When the portal closes, she retreats, scared, and meets Ryak, a tooth-fairy. He takes her to the Ivory Realm, where goblins and fairies live. The goblins have started to wage wars using human boys they take, controlling them with mind magic that Ellie’s brother is immune to.
It turns out, the ring that came with the wand, the same ring that Duncan carries on a chain at his neck, protected him. Soon, it’s up to him to rescue the enslaved boys from the goblins, whilst Ellie is making friends with fairies and goes off to find him.
In the story, it goes on to explain that they are the descendants of Merlyn, and that a prophecy exists about his bloodline, that a chosen heir (in this case, both of the kids), will save the world. It’s never explained which world though.
I did enjoy this story, and there’s a good chance that when Ash continues to write the second book, that I’ll consider grabbing it, however, it’s weaknesses will likely see me sample it before making any purchase.
Weaknesses of Tooth Goblins by Ash Toroid
- Every chapter had (a lot of) missing words in the sentences, and punctuation was incorrectly used when characters were speaking. This jarred me a lot when I was reading. But after giving my feedback to Ash in September, he has worked on this and it should no longer be a problem.
- Ellie felt older than a six year old even before she met her ancestor, with many of her thought processes being beyond that of a normal six year old (note that this could have been done on purpose).
- In some passages, it felt almost as if the author didn’t like Ellie, often making a firm point about how naive she was, and in one section, how “bemused” the fairies were by her.
- It felt that a lot of Ellie’s scenes were to teach the reader about the Ivory Realm, and many of her scenes I disliked because they did not progress the story as nicely as Duncan’s, nor seem to get her to her goal until the very end.
Strengths of Tooth Goblins by Ash Toroid
- The creativity that shone through was very strong, and a pleasure to encounter.
- I like Rayk, though the other fairies that accompanied Ellie didn’t make any impact on me.
- Ellie’s magic and that of Duncan’s was interesting to see in use. Whilst Duncan can control his magic with ease, Ellie struggled. I hope this is explored further in the next book.
- I really liked Duncan’s half of the book, and would have been happier to have had the book centre around Duncan and his half of the story and forgo Ellie altogether.
My Note for Ash Toroid
This is a really good story with lots of potential, and sets up the reader ready for a second book. It was an enjoyable read, and I’d love to see more people giving it a chance. I think you would get more readers if you revisited the cover’s design (99Designs can help you there).