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Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to the More Known World, a land invisible t Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to the More Known World, a land invisible to most people. Yet unfortunate circumstances keep Murgatroyd stranded in the Known World, bumbling through life with the feeling that an extraordinary something is waiting for him just beyond reach. Seventeen years later, that something finally arrives when a secret organization dedicated to exploring the More Known World invites Murgatroyd on a mission. But as the consummate loser begins to grow into the Oddfit he was meant to be, the Known World becomes bent on exterminating him. For once in his underachieving life, will Murgatroyd Floyd exceed expectations and outsmart those trying to thwart his stupendous destiny?


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Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to the More Known World, a land invisible t Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to the More Known World, a land invisible to most people. Yet unfortunate circumstances keep Murgatroyd stranded in the Known World, bumbling through life with the feeling that an extraordinary something is waiting for him just beyond reach. Seventeen years later, that something finally arrives when a secret organization dedicated to exploring the More Known World invites Murgatroyd on a mission. But as the consummate loser begins to grow into the Oddfit he was meant to be, the Known World becomes bent on exterminating him. For once in his underachieving life, will Murgatroyd Floyd exceed expectations and outsmart those trying to thwart his stupendous destiny?

30 review for The Oddfits

  1. 5 out of 5

    Melki

    Murgatroyd opened his mouth, and when he did, his voice came out in a very croaky whisper. "Who are you?" Ann corrected him. "Who are we, Murgatroyd. Who are we?" "You're an Oddfit, Murgatroyd. You don't belong in the Known World." Poor Murgatroyd Floyd has never felt like he belonged anywhere. As a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, he's always stood out in a crowd. He still lives with his awful parents who treat him like dirt. He has a restaurant job he likes, but his employer takes advanta Murgatroyd opened his mouth, and when he did, his voice came out in a very croaky whisper. "Who are you?" Ann corrected him. "Who are we, Murgatroyd. Who are we?" "You're an Oddfit, Murgatroyd. You don't belong in the Known World." Poor Murgatroyd Floyd has never felt like he belonged anywhere. As a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, he's always stood out in a crowd. He still lives with his awful parents who treat him like dirt. He has a restaurant job he likes, but his employer takes advantage of him. So when a woman tells him he should chuck it all and come along on a Quest in the mysterious More Known World, he's ready to sign up. But, there are a few complications . . . The restaurant owner needs him under her thumb. His best friend wants to go in his place. And, his parents will do ANYTHING to keep him around. Will Murgatroyd miss his one chance to escape into the More Known World? This one is pretty good. It's hard to miss the Roald Dahl influence - a simple, likable hero grows up surrounded by mostly villainous adults. The only problem I had was there seemed to be a bit too much backstory on the minor characters. Murgatroyd is such an endearing, hapless character; the book suffers when he is not center stage. I found this to be an interesting and unusual read. This book only offers a few tantalizing hints as to what surprises the More Known World may hold. It serves as a decent set-up for a potentially very good series. I'm looking forward to Murgatroyd's next adventure. Maybe he'll even change his name.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ashley DiNorcia

    *I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Oddfits is a strange little book. We follow Murgatroyd Floyd, a young man who just doesn't seem to be a good fit for the Known World. His best friend is devoted yet self-centered, his parents...are rage inducing and the only thing he's good at is waiting tables. After an encounter with a mysterious lady he finds out about the More Known World, the place he really belongs and The Quest in which he's destined to partak *I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Oddfits is a strange little book. We follow Murgatroyd Floyd, a young man who just doesn't seem to be a good fit for the Known World. His best friend is devoted yet self-centered, his parents...are rage inducing and the only thing he's good at is waiting tables. After an encounter with a mysterious lady he finds out about the More Known World, the place he really belongs and The Quest in which he's destined to partake. This book was beautifully written and definitely made me feel things. It did drag for quite a while and ended as soon as I got really interested (which is not unusual for me as far as Literary Fiction goes, so take that as you will.) I'd definitely recommend this to literary lovers who like a little bit of weird in their fiction!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Banner

    The strength of this book is in the writing. Not a fast moving plot or thrilling escapes, no building blows up or aliens appear, just good writing. It kept me glued until I could finish this in a couple of days. Granted it's a short book, but the writing just grapped me somehow. The story taps into that part of all of us that sometimes just don't fit in. Turns out, there is a pretty cool reason for that. You may be an Oddfit. Our story focus on one such individual, who is one of the most sadsack The strength of this book is in the writing. Not a fast moving plot or thrilling escapes, no building blows up or aliens appear, just good writing. It kept me glued until I could finish this in a couple of days. Granted it's a short book, but the writing just grapped me somehow. The story taps into that part of all of us that sometimes just don't fit in. Turns out, there is a pretty cool reason for that. You may be an Oddfit. Our story focus on one such individual, who is one of the most sadsack, likable characters I have come across in awhile. Don't get me wrong there is suspense and more than a little tension in the book. I enjoyed this and will be looking for more from this author.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Schultz

    I tried, but could not bring myself to enjoy this book. It seems to have been geared toward a younger crowd, perhaps late middle grade to early YA. It is just too silly and unrealistic to be adult fantasy. I could not connect to any of the characters. They had too many flaws, and a lot of those flaws were just too far out there. I disliked the main character, even though I know I should have felt sorry for him, and didn't care too much for any of the supporting characters either. They were all j I tried, but could not bring myself to enjoy this book. It seems to have been geared toward a younger crowd, perhaps late middle grade to early YA. It is just too silly and unrealistic to be adult fantasy. I could not connect to any of the characters. They had too many flaws, and a lot of those flaws were just too far out there. I disliked the main character, even though I know I should have felt sorry for him, and didn't care too much for any of the supporting characters either. They were all just too unreal. Throughout the book, I found myself waiting for the story to actually start. There's so much backstory and summarizing in the first half that it was unenjoyable, despite the well-written prose. The description of the book made it sound like the main character was going on a quest in another world, or perhaps a parallel universe. But that never even happens until the last page. The whole book is about the main character coming to the realization that he is not liked by anyone, including his parents, and that he does not fit in. Tiffany Tsao is a very good writer. She does a good job setting the scenes and providing descriptions without bogging down the prose. And she has quite the imagination. If this was intended for a younger age bracket, I wish it would have been labelled as such. I could see middle grade kids enjoying the ridiculousness of it. Instead, it was just labelled as Literary Fantasy.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    It really pains me to rate this book lower than five stars but it got inconsistent towards the end. Murgatroyd Floyd was the most interesting and fascinating character that I have read in years, he was so sensitive, likable and unforgettable. I really wanted to hug him, he was like a lonely kid that always got bullied and wast treated so poorly by his parents. I knew that he was considered a outlier to his peers, but he was special to me. As far as the story, the characterization was rich but th It really pains me to rate this book lower than five stars but it got inconsistent towards the end. Murgatroyd Floyd was the most interesting and fascinating character that I have read in years, he was so sensitive, likable and unforgettable. I really wanted to hug him, he was like a lonely kid that always got bullied and wast treated so poorly by his parents. I knew that he was considered a outlier to his peers, but he was special to me. As far as the story, the characterization was rich but the story itself was lacking. I hate it when an author starts off so strong then it goes along with tangents that has nothing to do with the plot. Where was the magical feeling that this book had in the beginning? It quickly lost me when it starting flowing in loopholes and inconsistencies. Sadly I won't be continuing this series, it started off so promising but went downhill.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Zabby

    Brilliantly written I spend a lot of time reading young adult and children's literature, teaching it gives me a great excuse. I picked this book because the word "oddfit" caught my eye. Lucky for me, this book was absurdist gold, on par with the great Daniel Pinkwater, whom I adore because not only does he write absurdist stories, but the warmth of his characters and creativity of plot are exceptional, instead of getting lost in the absurd. I was so pleased that Tsao's book is not onbky in this hi Brilliantly written I spend a lot of time reading young adult and children's literature, teaching it gives me a great excuse. I picked this book because the word "oddfit" caught my eye. Lucky for me, this book was absurdist gold, on par with the great Daniel Pinkwater, whom I adore because not only does he write absurdist stories, but the warmth of his characters and creativity of plot are exceptional, instead of getting lost in the absurd. I was so pleased that Tsao's book is not onbky in this hilariously fantastical vein, but sticks with a solid plot, well written characters, and a tone that kept me reading long past bedtime. I don't think I've enjoyed a book as much as this one in quite some time. I look forward to the next one! Please say there's a next one.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    https://anaslair.wordpress.com/2016/0... This is a tough one to review. I cannot say I loved it, I don't know if because of the story itself or the asian influences that I still have not gotten used to in literature but the fact is for a long time since I began reading it all I could think of was that it has been a long time since I read a book that dragged on this much, if ever. At times, the prose was beyond repetitive - not only the pages and pages about food and other random stuff but the char https://anaslair.wordpress.com/2016/0... This is a tough one to review. I cannot say I loved it, I don't know if because of the story itself or the asian influences that I still have not gotten used to in literature but the fact is for a long time since I began reading it all I could think of was that it has been a long time since I read a book that dragged on this much, if ever. At times, the prose was beyond repetitive - not only the pages and pages about food and other random stuff but the characters themselves. They would be described, then stuff in the middle, then a repetition of the description in more or less an elaborate manner. This happened most often with Kay Huat, our main character's best friend came into the picture. I felt I kept reading the same kind of stuff, and this applies to Murgatroyd's dumbness as well and how he kept saying he felt something great was coming for him. For a large part of the book we hear how our main character is dumb and how his parents seem absolutely crazy but no one seems to mind or even notice. There are hints of interesting things just waiting to happen but, again, the narrative just drags on and on about boring and meaningless topics. There were positive things as well, of course. I especially enjoyed the transformation that Murgatroyd went when he went to work as a waiter but overall he just wasn't an interesting character. None of them were. The world was a bit but too much was left unexplained or felt contradictory. The story got more interesting in the last third of the book but, honestly, the few things I read about the premise, which will supposedly be developed in the following books of the series, did not interest me enough to keep reading it. I recommend it to people more patient than me and who can appreciate this sort of literature and humour. Disclaimer: I would like to thank the publisher and Netgalley for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Joy

    This book was read for my 2016 Reading Challenge Around the World in 80 Books Wonderfully weird & fantastically odd. I love young adult fiction with a supernatural twist. But I had resigned myself to not reading much this year as I’m embarking on this Around the World in 80 Books reading challenge. I’m limiting myself to books only set in the known & recognized countries of our world. The overlap of beautiful fantasy, dystopian YA fiction set in a real life land is pretty narrow. So imagine my This book was read for my 2016 Reading Challenge Around the World in 80 Books Wonderfully weird & fantastically odd. I love young adult fiction with a supernatural twist. But I had resigned myself to not reading much this year as I’m embarking on this Around the World in 80 Books reading challenge. I’m limiting myself to books only set in the known & recognized countries of our world. The overlap of beautiful fantasy, dystopian YA fiction set in a real life land is pretty narrow. So imagine my surprise when January’s Kindle First picks from Amazon included a weird little gem set in Singapore. I thought it was too good to be true. And then I read the book, and I realized it wasn’t. It’s that good. The Oddfits is the story of Murgatroyd Floyd, an odd fitting British boy who has spent his whole life in Singapore. Life’s not easy for Murgatroyd, and there are definitely people to blame. But Murgatroyd lives an adequately satisfying life, with a friend and a job. Until one day he’s approached about something Great. Something New and Unknown. Something to give his existence meaning and his life purpose. It means leaving behind so much and stepping out into great unknowns, and Murgatroyd wrestles with these decisions. I’m thrilled this is a series, as I’m a excited about where it will go next. I loved the Singapore setting of this book, and how she captures the culture in the story. I’m planning my first trip to Singapore in March, and this book got me even more excited to visit this city-country. Living in Southeast Asia allowed so much of the book to feel familiar. I even recognized some of the “foreign words” from the language I’m learning! It’s written a bit younger than a regular YA book, maybe more older elementary/middle school. It reminded me of Suzanne Collins's first series, the Underland Chronicles or Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series. But I still enjoyed Tsao’s characters, dialogues and scenes. It’s a wildly creative read that I’m so glad I picked up!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Koeur

    https://koeur.wordpress.com/2015/12/1... Publisher: AmazonCrossing Publishing Date: February 2016 ISBN:9781503952621 Genre: SciFi Rating: 4.5/5 Publishers Description: Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to th https://koeur.wordpress.com/2015/12/1... Publisher: AmazonCrossing Publishing Date: February 2016 ISBN:9781503952621 Genre: SciFi Rating: 4.5/5 Publishers Description: Eight-year-old Murgatroyd Floyd doesn’t fit in—not as a blue-eyed blonde living in Singapore, not in school, and certainly not with his aloof expatriate parents, who seem determined to make his life even harder. Unbeknownst to him, there’s a reason why he’s always the odd boy out: he is an Oddfit, a rare type of human with access to the More Known World, a land invisible to most people. Review: That Justin Bieber cover has got to go. Fug me this was good. So good in fact that I read it in one sitting. The character development is superb as is the world building that combines hope of an alternate existence away from the clouded misery of being stuck in the known world. The cast is varied in its simplicity rendering the characters with a wealth of depth. It is at once funny, poignant and sad which tends to grab your psyche and pull you into the author’s alternate reality. GET THIS!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    Awful! 250+ pages that could have been more like 25. A whole book that talks about this amazing Quest, but literally never gets there. If you took the first few paragraphs from each chapter and put them together this would be a much better book. Information overload! Each time you are introduced to a new character you spend the rest of the chapter and possibly the next learning every breathe that character has ever taken. Annoying! There is a much better way to provide your reader with the needed Awful! 250+ pages that could have been more like 25. A whole book that talks about this amazing Quest, but literally never gets there. If you took the first few paragraphs from each chapter and put them together this would be a much better book. Information overload! Each time you are introduced to a new character you spend the rest of the chapter and possibly the next learning every breathe that character has ever taken. Annoying! There is a much better way to provide your reader with the needed info. Choppy, disjointed, and lack of prose! Everything just felt so disconnected. There was no flow from one topic to another. Made me feel like I was reading an encyclopedia article or something. Don't waste your time- I certainly will NOT be continuing this series.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Annie

    Neil Gaiman meets Roald Dahl I haven't had this much fun reading a book in ages! Being original in this day and age is practically impossible...practically. This gem of a book will introduce you to ( amongst other things) Murgatoyd Floyd, a Duck Assassin, out this world ice cream flavors, a one-eyed lady in emerald green and so,so much more! Don't hesitate!! Pick it up right away and begin your journey into a truly unique and fantastic book!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Adriana

    This was an exceptional read. Everything about it was mesmerizing and unique. I've never quite read anything like this. The prose was dream-like, and so captivating. Tsao did a wonderful job in incorporating the surreal fantasy of Murgatroyd in her prose, and everything came together in a magical way. I highly recommend this. I was in a trance from start to finish.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Polenth Blake

    Murgatroyd Floyd doesn't fit in. He's the only white child at school, has one friend, and nothing ever seems to work out for him. He's also an Oddfit, able to visit another land called the More Known World. Once he reaches adulthood, a group who explore that world seek him out. This is a portal story set in a person's life before the portal. Murgatroyd sees a few glimpses of the More Known World, but it's mainly not about that. It's about his life growing up and living in Singapore. It's also a s Murgatroyd Floyd doesn't fit in. He's the only white child at school, has one friend, and nothing ever seems to work out for him. He's also an Oddfit, able to visit another land called the More Known World. Once he reaches adulthood, a group who explore that world seek him out. This is a portal story set in a person's life before the portal. Murgatroyd sees a few glimpses of the More Known World, but it's mainly not about that. It's about his life growing up and living in Singapore. It's also a story with mature themes written in a children's book style. Both of these things made me interested in reading it. I did like the early part where Murgatroyd is befriending the ice cream seller. Unfortunately, that didn't last. Murgatroyd is abused right from the start. It's not simply that he feels like he doesn't fit in, but that the people around him actively try to harm him. This starts with his parents, who make sure his first day at school goes badly, then tell him it's his fault. The abuse continues into adulthood, where they keep all his earnings, to be sure he doesn't gain any independence. The other people in his life are only marginally better. His employer sees him more as a novelty possession to make her restaurant look good, and his best friend is selfish. It only counts as better because they don't spend as much time with Murgatroyd, so the damage they do is limited compared to his parents. As the abuse continued, I was increasingly uncomfortable with how it was handled. At first, the tone feels as though the reader is supposed to laugh at the things happening to Murgatroyd. I wasn't laughing. Later on, this abuse is blamed on the Known World reacting to Murgatroyd being an Oddfit. In other words, blame for the abuse is shifted away from the abusers. They couldn't help it. Murgatroyd was just different and they had to treat him like that. Which is disturbingly close to how people try to minimise abuse against non-neurotypical children. There are interesting elements to the story. The idea of the More Known World, and the parts shown of it, was potentially fascinating. It looks set for the series to make some different choice in terms of plot, compared to the usual portal story. Where it falls down is the challenge of making someone's pre-portal life as exciting as the world on the other side. I don't feel this book managed it. There wasn't a whole lot of plot, so it was stretched very thin. There's a lot of padding, such as the multiple paragraphs taken up listing out food items. There are some things that may be an issue for readers. There are a few casual bigoted comments made, generally by characters (though some are in the narration). Examples are bystanders fat shaming people, Murgatroyd's parents using binary gender assumptions as a weapon, and calling an unhealthy home environment schizophrenic. There are also some detailed descriptions of killing animals, as the restaurant where Murgatroyd works slaughters animals as a public entertainment. Basically, the book isn't as fluffy as it might appear on a quick read of the opening, so go into it knowing that. I liked some parts of the book enough that I might read the next one. This acted as a prologue more than anything, and it might be the aspect of abusers not being able to help abusing will be subverted later. It's difficult to tell at this point, as a lot of the nature of the More Known World wasn't explained. I'd also hope the next book picks up the pace, now that the world and the main players are introduced. This is a book that had potential, but never quite reached it. [A copy of this book was received from the publisher for review purposes] Review from: http://blog.polenthblake.com/2016/02/the-oddits-tiffany-tsao/

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nathan

    This is a wonderful, joyously eccentric novel from an author with a unique voice. Any novel which opens an early chapter from the point of view of a lobster about to be cooked in a restaurant, and in which one of the most malevolent characters is called the Duck Assassin, is all right by me. This is a contemporary fantasy novel, perhaps entering the realms of science fiction, but not in the epic, po-faced vein of much of the genre. It oozes normality and the humdrum, which only makes the lure of This is a wonderful, joyously eccentric novel from an author with a unique voice. Any novel which opens an early chapter from the point of view of a lobster about to be cooked in a restaurant, and in which one of the most malevolent characters is called the Duck Assassin, is all right by me. This is a contemporary fantasy novel, perhaps entering the realms of science fiction, but not in the epic, po-faced vein of much of the genre. It oozes normality and the humdrum, which only makes the lure of the mysterious More Known World stronger. It is unashamedly an origin story, essentially an extended set-up for a series of books that, I hope, will explore the More Known World in greater detail. It is a place with potential for mind-boggling vastness, but is somewhat underdeveloped here. These are usually weaknesses in a story, but Tiffany Tsao has created an array of such wonderful characters that I was able to forgive the book its faults and simply enjoy the journey of discovery that we are taken on with the central character. This character goes by the name of Murgatroyd Floyd, a somewhat pathetic and put-upon young Caucasian man (an ang moh) growing up in the hustle and bustle of modern day Singapore. This real world location is lightly drawn, but conveys a vibrancy and personality that is both familiar and different. Poor Murgatroyd is a misfit (or an Oddfit) brought up by his British parents, who subject him to a lifetime of subtle abuse that would be humorous if it wasn't so utterly cruel. The grotesqueness of them and their treatment is in the best traditions of the nightmare parent figures of Roald Dahl, and evinces an enormous amount of sympathy for Murgatroyd. This is deftly done, as he as a character might be hard to sympathise with due to his comic book naivete. He is Forrest Gump in his simple outlook and unconditional love for a harsh world, he is Brecht's Shen Te from the Good Person of Szechwan - a person compelled to be good despite the cynicism of everyone and everywhere around him. Quite simply, he is the unlikeliest of heroes, and all the more heroic because of this. From his humble beginnings, Murgatroyd learns that the world is infinitely bigger than he ever imagined, and he embarks on a quest to discover more and find a sense of belonging he has never truly had, in the face of adversity and a parade of self-serving characters. Tsao keeps a tight rein on the fantastical premise with a tone that is shot through with bathos. The run of the mill frequently yields to the bizarre, only for moments of high drama to be hilariously tempered by the prosaic once again. The ultimate effect is a story that never takes itself too seriously or becomes bogged down in melodramatic mythologising, yet still packs a dramatic and emotional punch. I have genuinely read nothing quite like this, and I can't wait to read more.

  15. 5 out of 5

    DJ

    This is a tough one to review. I'm really torn between five and three stars overall. I may wind up changing it to four? An oddfit is someone who doesn't fit into the Known World. Someone who parents can't stand, who keeps a minimum of friends...a lost soul, if you will. This is true for Murgatroyd Floyd. A young man born in Singapore to British ex-pats, raised in this melange of mingling countries. He's as pale and blond as a ghost. He speaks local Singapore slang, and really couldn't see his lif This is a tough one to review. I'm really torn between five and three stars overall. I may wind up changing it to four? An oddfit is someone who doesn't fit into the Known World. Someone who parents can't stand, who keeps a minimum of friends...a lost soul, if you will. This is true for Murgatroyd Floyd. A young man born in Singapore to British ex-pats, raised in this melange of mingling countries. He's as pale and blond as a ghost. He speaks local Singapore slang, and really couldn't see his life going anywhere. Despite that, he has a giant heart, was happy in his job as a waiter for one of the city's most popular restaurants, and had a best friend who was more an older brother. Life, though, tried over and over to keep him down. From the time he was an awkward lad constantly getting beat up in school to the untimely death of his adopted Uncle Yusef to the current, it was difficult for Murgatroyd to find anywhere to fit in. Murgatroyd just dealt with what life handed him. Until one day he meets a woman with a patch. And he realizes that life isn't as we always perceived...there is more...The More Known World. Which is technically an oxymoron since so much isn't known about that place. Which is why the oddfit's explore it, learn new territories, live solitary lives performing their duties in The Quest. And Murgatroyd wants in. This story gets full stars for the uniqueness of tackling the subject of why someone doesn't fit into their life. VERY IMAGINITIVE! The writing is like poetry sometimes, and sometimes it gets a little meandering on subjects that, at this point, I can't see being of any importance...but then this is only the beginning. That's right. This book is only the first piece of Murgatroyd's story. As in life up until he makes the choice between staying in the Known World and possibly becoming a Sumfit--normal humans who misunderstand the Oddfits--or accepting that he is different, and this difference has a purpose and reason. Had I known it was part one, I would have saved it for later. It also makes this story hard to write about because it's like someone hit the pause button on the DVR and hit the remote so I cannot finish the movie! UGH! I feel like I'm missing out. And I'm going to have to wait for over a year (hoping for sooner, but probably won't be any sooner) to find the remote and unpause my show. Hence the three for now. I may comeback and change it when I get book two...I mean, it was creative and so unique a story...I just cannot judge a half of a book, a third of a book, or whatever book one will be in the end. I'd recommend this, but really, I'd say wait until Feb 2017 for part 2. *A JANU-RANDOM READ* - Last book of the month...I enjoyed it...but I truly need more.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Burton

    I received a copy of The Oddfits by Tiffany Tsao from its publishers, Amazon Crossing, via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. The novel is set in Singapore which appealed to me as I know very little about the city and Tsao gives lots of interesting insights into everyday life there. Tsao has created a great character in her protagonist, the unfortunately named Murgatroyd Floyd. A blonde haired, blue eyed caucasian child of British parents, Murgatroyd hasn't found his place in Singapore, I received a copy of The Oddfits by Tiffany Tsao from its publishers, Amazon Crossing, via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. The novel is set in Singapore which appealed to me as I know very little about the city and Tsao gives lots of interesting insights into everyday life there. Tsao has created a great character in her protagonist, the unfortunately named Murgatroyd Floyd. A blonde haired, blue eyed caucasian child of British parents, Murgatroyd hasn't found his place in Singapore, even though he has never lived anywhere else, and Tsao uses this extreme example of not belonging to highlight the sense of alienation that most of us feel at one time or another. Physically different and socially inept, and with a name that is unpronounceable to Singaporean tongues, Murgatroyd only finds 'home' in an ice-cream shop owned by a strange elderly man who had previously vanished for over sixty years. Billed as science fiction, The Oddfits does take its readers to other worlds, sort of, but it is essentially a novel about how we view ourselves and how other people see us. Murgatroyd seems to call out to be pitied, yet he doesn't see himself as especially hard done by. He is content in a job that suits him perfectly, with a best friend he has known since his school days, and with parents who always do their best for him. However, once he meets a one-eyed woman in a green dress, he begins to wonder whether his future is quite so clear as he had once believed. I frequently found myself smiling at the rich and often bizarre imagery in The Oddfits and I now really, really want to visit Singapore. There's lots of delicious-sounding food there for a start - this is another novel to read with snacks on standby! The idea of L'Abbatoir restaurant is gorily appealing although I am far to squeamish to ever eat there, and the Duck Assassin is one scary creation. I did like Olivia and James too - not as they are, obviously, but the idea that people could really behave like that is great for the book. This is a fun read with a seriously thoughtful side. It won't appeal to sci-fi fans who like action-packed books, but those who like to take a sideways glance at our own world will probably enjoy the ideas a lot. See more of my book reviews on my blog, Stephanie Jane

  17. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    This book is incredible. I loved it completely. There is so much suspense, hope, and turmoil. Seriously, the one burst of relief and happiness in the book for the reader was the ending. Murgatroyd is such a sweet, loving person. He is so incredibly good. Everyone set him back, such as his classmates, employer, his best friend (view spoiler)[(although this guy had some redemption in the end) (hide spoiler)] , and especially his parents (view spoiler)[(the parents did at least feel guilt) (hide spo This book is incredible. I loved it completely. There is so much suspense, hope, and turmoil. Seriously, the one burst of relief and happiness in the book for the reader was the ending. Murgatroyd is such a sweet, loving person. He is so incredibly good. Everyone set him back, such as his classmates, employer, his best friend (view spoiler)[(although this guy had some redemption in the end) (hide spoiler)] , and especially his parents (view spoiler)[(the parents did at least feel guilt) (hide spoiler)] . This is such a well written book. I definitely recommend it. Seriously, this book has so many meanings and layers, like a roll of sushi. The meanings are right in the open and hits hard, really hard, creeping up on the reader. This is definitely an odd book, but this is like sushi. It’s weird at first, but it’s too good to not like it. This is Death of a Salesman, guys. This will leave readers speechless and full from digesting all that meaning (sushi? yep, still sushi. not those gross imitations though). This is Animal Farm and 1984, without the depressing endings. There also isn’t any Big Brother or revolutionary pigs here, but the disconcerting oddness of these books emanate here too. The ideas in this book aren’t new, but they have definitely never been shown in this way before. Overall, this is a very original, well written book. If you're not going to read it for its meaning (which would make this happen ), at least read it for the beautiful, if sometimes overdone, writing: As the ice cream melted in his mouth, the boy felt violets and chocolate and warm honeyed peaches and coconut milk and the spine-tingling sensation that the universe was a very, very vast place indeed. As he bit into the shard, it exploded and he felt his eyes and ears and throat aglow with firelight. This is a description of ice cream! Lastly, enjoy this mini sushi: Unfortunately I don't know how to put in an entire gif here D:

  18. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    A charming and engaging story with well crafted and memorable characters. Perfectly strange and unique, reminiscent of Gaiman's Neverwhere and InterWorld or Pratchett's The Long Earth offerings without being trite. The intertwining narratives of the secondary characters wonderfully envelope and support the journey of the lead character. The description and setting make it quite easy to immerse yourself in the streets and life of Singapore, even for those like me who have not yet visited. Instead A charming and engaging story with well crafted and memorable characters. Perfectly strange and unique, reminiscent of Gaiman's Neverwhere and InterWorld or Pratchett's The Long Earth offerings without being trite. The intertwining narratives of the secondary characters wonderfully envelope and support the journey of the lead character. The description and setting make it quite easy to immerse yourself in the streets and life of Singapore, even for those like me who have not yet visited. Instead of a coming-of-age story, we are treated to a coming-of-self story, and it is all to easy to empathize with the main character Murgatroyd. The level of intrigue introduced in the first pages is easily maintained throughout, and I

  19. 5 out of 5

    Anne Earney

    I wish there was a way to shelve books I didn't finish without having to put them on my "read" shelf or give them a finished date. Anyhow, I read about a quarter of this and just couldn't get into it. Not sure why I had it to begin with, but it was one of the oldest unread books on my Kindle so I gave it a try. Some interesting concepts and I did learn a little about Singapore, but it wasn't enough to hold my interest.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    This book made me hungry-- which was especially annoying as I was having a procedure done and was not allowed to eat after it was over. I do have to admit that I delighted in Murgatroyd Floyd's bizarre parents. Their behavior, and the food descriptions were my favorite bits.

  21. 4 out of 5

    AudibleBlerd

    2.5 rounded up to 3. This story had an interesting premise, but had a tendency to constantly slow down for side character back stories. I can only assume that we will be seeing these characters again in books to come. Overall, it's an entertaining read, but don't expect a lot of action..

  22. 4 out of 5

    Eustacia Tan

    This is another one of those books that has been languishing on my TBR list for years. I heard about this when it came out because it’s a fantasy set in Singapore and how rare is that? But, I never actually got around to reading it until now, because I heard that the author has another book coming out that I’m interested in reading as well. The Oddfits follows Murgatroyd Floyd, a Singaporean (ethnicity: ang moh aka Caucasian) as he doesn’t fit in through life. He somehow makes it through without This is another one of those books that has been languishing on my TBR list for years. I heard about this when it came out because it’s a fantasy set in Singapore and how rare is that? But, I never actually got around to reading it until now, because I heard that the author has another book coming out that I’m interested in reading as well. The Oddfits follows Murgatroyd Floyd, a Singaporean (ethnicity: ang moh aka Caucasian) as he doesn’t fit in through life. He somehow makes it through without achieving anything, ending up as a twenty-five year old who works as a waiter. One day, however, Murgatroyd is told something miraculous: he doesn’t fit in because he literally does not belong to this world. Murgatroyd is an Oddfit, someone who can explore the More Known World. Now that he knows who he is, Murgatroyd is going to jump at the chance to leave, right? After all, why would he stay in a world that he doesn’t belong to? The main thing you have to keep in mind when reading The Oddfits is that it’s a series (although there are only two books out right now). And because it’s book one in a series, this book is basically worldbuilding and character-introduction. The book goes into more detail about the More Known World, why people seem to hate Murgatroyd and lots about his miserable life here. It’s like the first part of Harry Potter, but you end the book just as Harry leaves for Hogwarts. Or like in Narnia but the book ends just as they go into the wardrobe. Although nothing much happened in the book and that would ordinarily annoy me, I still enjoyed this. The idea of the More Known World was interesting and I felt a lot of sympathy for Murgatroyd. Plus, I liked reading about Singapore as a place where magic can happen and pretty much all the details rang true for me (seven years later, I still remember how much I disagreed with My Singapore Lover because of all its inaccuracies). Overall, this was an interesting book. Not a lot goes on, but I did enjoy the worldbuilding and I think that as long as you keep in mind that this is meant to be book one of a series, the emphasis on worldbuilding and characters is easier to handle. This review was first posted at Eustea Reads

  23. 4 out of 5

    Terri Weitze

    I like this book a lot - but it is simply an introduction to the rest of the series. The underlying concept is terrific - people who are born not fitting into the world (as we know it) - who they are and why they are. The characters are great and believable and I found the main character very very relatable. My main frustration is that this book seems to be an appetizer for the main story, which is only briefly touched upon. But this first book is so good (and totally okay for the young reader) I like this book a lot - but it is simply an introduction to the rest of the series. The underlying concept is terrific - people who are born not fitting into the world (as we know it) - who they are and why they are. The characters are great and believable and I found the main character very very relatable. My main frustration is that this book seems to be an appetizer for the main story, which is only briefly touched upon. But this first book is so good (and totally okay for the young reader) - there is also a flavor of Lemony Snicket to this book.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    Some really interesting ideas, but I found it frustrating to read.. especially seeing as the quest doesn't even begin by the end of the book! I do love the 'unfolding' of the world, the idea of exploring the in-between places.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Intriguing, but a frustrating read.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rokkan

    Very interesting, I don't recall ever reading a book like this before. It's a bit like Interworld meets the Matrix meets... well I don't know what, but it's a really good book.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jeff Hanson

    The Oddfits is a delightfully magical and humorous book-reminiscent of Harry Potter, but if Harry Potter was an adult living in Singapore. The hero of the story, Murgatroyd Floyd Shwet Foo, doesn't fit in--he is quite a loser, but he's a loser with a big heart. Turns out he doesn't fit in because he's an Oddfit, and doesn't belong in The Known World, but is only happy exploring The More Known World. The More Known World reminded me a bit of Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber, but we only get a few gl The Oddfits is a delightfully magical and humorous book-reminiscent of Harry Potter, but if Harry Potter was an adult living in Singapore. The hero of the story, Murgatroyd Floyd Shwet Foo, doesn't fit in--he is quite a loser, but he's a loser with a big heart. Turns out he doesn't fit in because he's an Oddfit, and doesn't belong in The Known World, but is only happy exploring The More Known World. The More Known World reminded me a bit of Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber, but we only get a few glimpses of The More Known World in this book--this book sets the stage for what is looking will be a delightful series. Tsao's writing flows easily, and has rich vocabulary and evocative detail - especially when describing food. Some of the passages on food in this book had my mouth watering! But she also is adept at creating compelling characters. In addition to Murgatroyd Floyd, there is Murgatroyd's controlling restaurateur boss, Shakti Vithani, owner of L'Abbatoir - a restaurant where the meat is extremely fresh (still living) and part of the experience is seeing it slaughtered. And then there is the restaurant's creepy ninja-like butcher, known simply as The Duck Assassin. And the charming elderly ice cream parlor owner Yusef bin Hassan, who is Murgatroyd's first introduction to the More Known World, and gives the young Murgatroyd Floyd his first experience of feeling like he belongs. And the one-eyed Ann, who becomes Murgatroyd's guide to the More Known World. There is also his handsome best friend and protector who fits in everywhere he goes and is the opposite of Murgatroyd, Kay Huat. And finally of course, there are Murgatroyd's parents, British ex-pats who have a devised a most unique way of dealing with their son's oddfitness. Tsao creates a world that is entirely believable and combines the familiar with the exotic--whether it be the magic of the More Known World or the exotic food stalls of Singapore. Look forward to seeing where the series takes us, and how it unfolds--hopefully Singapore isn't left entirely behind because it is so vivid it is almost like another character in the book.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    This is the first novel I've picked up from Kindle First. I'm pleasantly surprised that Amazon isn't dumping the trash onto its Prime members to raise sales upon the book's release. This book was a joy to read. At first I worried that it fell into the pitfalls of common fantasy tropes. Murgatroyd Floyd Shwet Foo is out of place as a son of two British parents living in Singapore. They enroll him in a local Singaporean school, and childhood torture ensues, first for his odd name and then for his This is the first novel I've picked up from Kindle First. I'm pleasantly surprised that Amazon isn't dumping the trash onto its Prime members to raise sales upon the book's release. This book was a joy to read. At first I worried that it fell into the pitfalls of common fantasy tropes. Murgatroyd Floyd Shwet Foo is out of place as a son of two British parents living in Singapore. They enroll him in a local Singaporean school, and childhood torture ensues, first for his odd name and then for his odd "Chinese name" given him later in the hopes that it would rectify the name issue. I would have put the book down if this was how the book began. However it begins before the life of Murgatroyd Floyd. Uncle Yusuf is a local ice cream vendor. He ran away at age 19 and didn't return until he was 65. He tells his family where he went, but none of them really remember. The mystery of Yusuf's story draws us in immediately so that when the cliche misfit (to avoid to obvious pun) character makes his debut, we are interested in more than identifying with this character searching for his destiny. I've been trying to find a good fantasy novel to read since "The Magicians" left a void. Tsao successfully subverts some of the more obvious fantasy tropes. Her worlds and magic are not escapes from childhood. Rather she uses the fantastic as a brilliant metaphor for different social groups and attitudes toward the world. Her craft is not subtle, but it is solid. She builds up the relationships of her characters and then systematically references them at the end of the novel so we can know the significance of each. I won't say anything more since I'm trying to keep this spoiler-free, but check this novel out if you want some good fantasy.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Petra

    Tiffany Tsao gives us a creation that stays with us, a weird world we don't want to leave. Her protagonist, Murgatroyd Floyd, is a creative twist on the "chosen one" storyline. How our world treats Murgatroyd and how he responds can be heartwrenching. Murgatroyd's resilience, his sweetness when the whole world is his adversary, is surprising and Dickensian. We root for Murgatroyd all the way. As so many of the other characters seethe around Murgatroyd, delighting in their sadistic attempts to ma Tiffany Tsao gives us a creation that stays with us, a weird world we don't want to leave. Her protagonist, Murgatroyd Floyd, is a creative twist on the "chosen one" storyline. How our world treats Murgatroyd and how he responds can be heartwrenching. Murgatroyd's resilience, his sweetness when the whole world is his adversary, is surprising and Dickensian. We root for Murgatroyd all the way. As so many of the other characters seethe around Murgatroyd, delighting in their sadistic attempts to make him miserable, Tsao lets them display foibles through the narrative's close inspection of thoughts, words, and deeds. Sometimes the weirdest world the author describes in The Oddfits is the real world. More than a backdrop, the author paints the Known World and More Known World with sensory technicolor. Readers become observers and explorers in both worlds, allowing for an easy acceptance of the fantastical experiences of the More Known World without ever having to pause for suspension of disbelief. The right kind of readers, those who might be Oddfits or Somefits themselves, will soon feel a sort of homesickness to become Oddfit explorers themselves.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Carlos Raoni

    This book was a surprise from the beginning to the end, solid story, good characters and an impressive concept kept me going until the last page. But it has flaws, the author constantly do descriptions, ok this is normal, but she keeps going and going in the description where it could have ended waaaay back.. She sometimes try to make the reader envision how the life in singapore is and that is awesome but the pacing in the book suffers a great deal because of it, there are times i skipped whole p This book was a surprise from the beginning to the end, solid story, good characters and an impressive concept kept me going until the last page. But it has flaws, the author constantly do descriptions, ok this is normal, but she keeps going and going in the description where it could have ended waaaay back.. She sometimes try to make the reader envision how the life in singapore is and that is awesome but the pacing in the book suffers a great deal because of it, there are times i skipped whole paragraphs and the description of "singaporean" lifestye was still going. in the end the book is a enjoyable reading, i hope that she publish the second book of the saga (if a second book was meant to exist). This could be a spoiler so Spoiler alert guys ----- The concept of the new world is beautiful and simple it would be magnificent if she explored more of the More Known World i think it would be a much better book. End of spoilers

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