An Orc on the Wild Side pairs classic fantasy with day-in-the-life humor, providing loads of laughs and a hilarious reinvention of fantasy tropes and stock characters. The book essentially brings Lord of the Rings into modern day, giving us insight into scenarios such as reforms in a goblin kingdom where eating your fellow goblin is preferable to honest healthcare. I marveled at the originality throughout and couldn’t get enough of the deadpan humor built into every page. The characters are hilarious, filled with their own quirks and agendas that take a while to be revealed.
I love the concept of taking such a well-defined genre and blowing it out of the water to look at the actual personalities and inner-workings of these character types. To be honest, I’ve never thought about Dwarven eating habits and how they keep their cholesterol at a healthy level. I didn’t think twice about the horrors of daily Goblin life and what it would be like if sweeping reforms were put in place. Would they actually stop killing each other and learn to be more civilized? Would they stop starting century-long wars over mere dirty looks? Would they accept a King who wants to modernize their ancient ways of thinking? You’ll have to read to find out.
Above all, An Orc on the Wild Side is a hilarious read for anybody with a soft spot for classic fantasy. This isn’t your typical fantasy novel, but a retelling of those stories we know and love. I found myself laughing repeatedly and shaking my head at the many little things I never knew I’d find fascinating in the fantasy realms.
An Orc on the Wild Side
By Tom Holt
Published by Orbit Books
NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.