Odd Voices is a collection of short stories like no other. For too long protagonists have been cut from the same cloth, but not here, gone are the cookie-cutter leads, replaced with beautifully diverse characters and they take you through their own tales, from poverty and love, to survival and magic. You will be whisked away on stories impossible if not for the authors’ common desire to break away from normality and challenge themselves into writing something unique, magical in its own way, and perhaps even daring as they dig into part of themselves that the young adult literacy world is still at the very start of embracing.
There is so much to like about Odd Voices. Being a compilation of different author’s work the reader is presented with a great diversity in writing styles, and plots, but all have a common theme, a protagonist who would normally be left in the shadows. These stories not only bring these people into the spotlight breaking away from cookie-cutter characters, but address things often overlooked, such as how people beyond the scope of societies ‘normal’ not only face the same daily issues, but have an entire another area of consideration, whether it be fear of rejection due to sexual preferences, belittlement due to differences, or how far someone would go to survive or live. These tales really help to put you, the reader, in the centre of thought processes you may not have even considered. My personal favourites were Oblivisci and A Last Meal of Magic, but with such a wide variety of style and tales, there really is something for everyone. Thought-provoking, inspiring, and a breath of fresh air from run of the mill characters.