Odd & True {ARC Review}

Publication date: September 12th, 2017
Publisher: Amulet Books
Series: None
Format: e-ARC
Source: Netgalley

Trudchen grew up hearing Odette’s stories of their monster-slaying mother and a magician’s curse. But now that Tru’s older, she’s starting to wonder if her older sister’s tales were just comforting lies, especially because there’s nothing fantastic about her own life—permanently disabled and in constant pain from childhood polio.

In 1909, after a two-year absence, Od reappears with a suitcase supposedly full of weapons and a promise to rescue Tru from the monsters on their way to attack her. But it’s Od who seems haunted by something. And when the sisters’ search for their mother leads them to a face-off with the Leeds Devil, a nightmarish beast that’s wreaking havoc in the Mid-Atlantic states, Tru discovers the peculiar possibility that she and her sister—despite their dark pasts and ordinary appearances—might, indeed, have magic after all. 

**I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.**

I'm conflicted about this one. I did enjoy it, but I was disappointed that it wasn't a tale of magic and monster hunting like the synopsis like me to believe. 

Odd & True was more about the love between sisters, and the pain and heartbreak that comes with life. There are powerful family issues that take place within the story.

There are alternating POVs in the story from Odd (Odette) and True (Trudchen). Odd's POV speaks about their past life and what happened in it, and True's POV speaks about what is going on in the present. Both were easy enough to follow, and were vital to understand everything that was going on.

The magic aspect comes into play because Odd told her sister that her family came from monster hunters, and that their mother had the magical ability to keep them away. She would tell True the story of her birth every year, but each year True would start to question if there really was any magic or if they were just pretty lies her sister told her to keep happy. 

"Once upon a time..." she would always say in the beginning, "on a cold January morning in the year 1894, a girl named Trudchen Maria Grey came into the world in a castle built to resemble a stone Scottish fortress called Dunnottar..."

It is said that on their 15th birthday, monsters will come for them. So on True's 15th birthday, Odd shows up and wants her to come with her right away. Based on the knowledge that their Aunt sent True away two years earlier, we know that something happened, but we do not find out until much later. It has to do with the 15th birthday aspect, but not in the way that you would think. 

The absolute best part of Odd & True is the relationship between both sisters. You can tell that their love is deep seeded into each other, because even after two years apart, they are still as close as ever with an exception. Odd has been through something mysterious, and True will do whatever she can to get her sister to tell the truth. I loved how Odd would take care of True growing up. True's Polio illness leaves her with only one working leg, but Odd never lets her believe that she is weak.

Technically there are monsters in this story, but I can't say much more without giving it away. There is one monster hunt with the Leeds Devil, but that is about it. If you go into this expecting lots of magic and monster hunting, you will be disappointed. But if you go in with an open mind, you might enjoy this complex story. 

My only issues aside from the lack of magic and monsters would be the disappearance of Aunt Victoria and Uncle Magnus. Both are pretty important characters to the story, especially Magnus, but after Odd's last POV with him in the past, we do not hear about him again. It would have been nice to have a wrap up about those two characters. 

While Odd & True was meant to be a story about two sisters, it also shed some light about issues that women of that time period faced. There are other issues such as infidelity, alcoholism, prostitution, sex, and an insinuation about romance between siblings. For these reasons, I think Odd & True will appeal to more adult readers, and mature teens. 

Nevertheless, Cat Winters knows how to write a story that will draw you in and leave you wanting more.

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