Format: ARC from Red Tash Books
Release Date: June 14, 2012
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Create Space
In Troll Or Derby, fifteen-year-old Roller Deb is singled out by town bullies for both her skates, and her sexual orientation. When her popular homecoming queen of a sister is kidnapped by a scuzzy drug dealer, Deb must flee the trailer park in which she's grown up, and rescue her. Along the way, Deb becomes enmeshed in the magical realm of trolls and fairies, and the blood-thirsty version of roller derby at which these beings excel. But spending too much time among the fairies comes with a price. Will Deb choose to save her sister, with the aid of a mysterious troll? Or will she be lost to the lures of roller derby, and the blonde temptress April, forever?
This Brilliant Darkness, last year which gave me one massive "mind-f*ck" (her words, not mine) because it was brilliant indeed. However it is with great embarrassment that when TROLL OR DERBY landed on our inbox, I initially declined it, not because I didn't believe in the book, rather I was taking a little break from reading. And it is now with GREAT HUMILITY that I am so glad I took it up because I obviously enjoyed this crazy world of TROLL OR DERBY immensely! So Red, I'd like to take this time to THANK YOU for the motivation, the sales pitch and for not putting pressure on me.
I'm Harlow Saarkenner. I am an American Troll living in rural Indiana, and this is the story of how I met a kick-ass rollergirl, rejoined a rock band, and lived happily ever after.
In a landfill. did I mention that?
TROLL OR DERBY is dark and gritty, filled with exciting chase and purposeful action that it's a challenge to step away from the story once you start it. Debra Breedon or Roller Deb was never aware of her fae origin, all her life she believed she was human until her sister Gennifer got abducted causing her mom to go berserk and now it's up to her to save her sister and fulfill a prophecy. But a simple rescue mission earned her a husband, a formidable nemesis, getting drugged and high on faeth and myriad of other encounters with Rhinomen, fellow fae and trolls in between running the rink. Deb reminded me a lot of Ellen Page in Whip It! with her tomboyish charm and wicked sense of humor as Roller Deb she was sexy and a fearsome heroine that when she finally embraced her fae powers it's nothing short of awesome it felt like staring into the sun. I know she's the one prophesied but I never expected RTash will make her outstanding!
I'm your Protector, I can't hurt you -- but I'll give you back your teeth, you don't have to be my wife anymore.
Harlow, the name alone is so rock star, and though trolls are far from handsome or worthy of sexy and romantic fantasies, he's the kind you want to fall in love with. He's the alpha guy with a beta heart, he's been in love with Deb from the get go and when he found her again, he basically vowed that he'll stick to her no matter what. I love this guy and that teeth pulling part was so humorous I asked RTash is this is a metaphor for marriage in general. He has that Michael Cera/Jesse Eisenberg charm going on for him and I for one love a sexy geek. Well at least in my mind Harlow is one. :D
Only the wicked understand the way of the wicked my dear.
Aside from the comical but adventure-filled story, the tale was told in alternating POV's from Deb and Harlow which I find cool because it's always nice to know what the guy was thinking when caught in critical moments like marriage and being in love. More importantly I LOVE the villain, Jarod McJagger, the name alone is wicked indeed and he is relentless in ensuring that he gets what he wants. Too bad Roller Deb and Harlow is a tag team worthy of their championship belt, your moves are no match for these two, McJagger!
Anyway this was a fun summer read and roller derby brought back a lot of fond memories for me. I used to have an unhealthy attachment to my first pair of skates too and this stemmed from watching actual roller derby matches at noon when I was a kid long before cable TV so I can more than relate to Deb and her adventure.