The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice

Fifth and final book of The Translucent Boy series

Young Adult - Fantasy - Epic
337 Pages
Reviewed on 02/20/2023
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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice is a work of fiction in the fantasy and adventure subgenres. It forms the fifth and final book of The Translucent Boy series and is penned by Tom Hoffman. Intended for the young adult and older middle-grade reading audience, this charming book concludes a stellar series following the exploits of Odo, Sephie, and the rest of the gang. A visit to a flower show leads the crew to another time entirely, where the secrets of 1749 uncover a desperate plea for help. Odo and the crew must combine all of their unusual powers for this final escapade if they are to survive the deadly approach of the Children of Ice, controlled by a great and terrible force.

Tom Hoffman has always delivered incredible content in his highly engaging series and I’m sad to see the series end but it was a fantastic way to do it. The stakes have never been higher and the mysteries have never been trickier to unravel than this last adventure, and the titular Children of Ice are terrifying to behold through Hoffman’s lens of creative, cinematic, and multisensory description. It was also emotional to see the conclusion of Sephie’s journey as I’ve always been attached to her and her abilities. Her intellect is celebrated and foregrounded in this story in particular. Overall, I would not hesitate to recommend that fans of the series get their hands on The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice immediately, and newcomers to Hoffman’s magical writing should start Odo’s adventures as soon as they can.

Heather Stockard

Teenage superheroes Odie, Sephie, Silas, and Emmy are preparing to graduate from high school and go off to college. In the midst of worrying about scholarships and trying to set up campus tours, they find themselves drawn into yet another adventure. An ancient sampler leads them to Solis, a mysterious alien girl with incredible powers, who was raised in the 18th century. Odo and his friends rescue her and bring her to their own time where they work to find out where she’s from and why she was sent to live on Earth. Their investigation leads them to a distant world held hostage by powerful automatons called Ice Children. Like Solis, they can control heat and cold, but they have used their powers to freeze entire cities, killing thousands and plunging the entire planet into chaos. Odo and the Odd Squad must help Solis discover why the Ice Children are destroying her homeworld and how to stop them before it's too late.

The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice is the fifth and final book of Tom Hoffman’s Translucent Boy series. It takes readers on one last fantastical journey with Odo and his delightfully odd band of teenage heroes. In addition to the quirky humor and colorful, imaginative characters and settings found in all of The Translucent Boy books, Hoffman has introduced slightly more mature themes of self-discovery, love, and change. If you have read the other books in this series, you won’t want to miss the exciting and touching conclusion.

Liz Konkel

The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice by Tom Hoffman is the fifth book in the Translucent Boy series. Odo and his best friend Sephie take a surprising trip that allows them to encounter Jonathan Morse who has helped them in the past. They make a shocking discovery that dates back to 1749 and an alien that may have left behind a jumbled message for help. Embarking on an epic adventure, Odo and his friends meet a mysterious girl named Solis and begin a dangerous journey to help save her world. Helping Solis will require facing off against a dangerous foe and uncovering the origins of the Children of Ice.

This is the final installment of the series which finds Odo and Sephie facing the prospect of their future with excitement as they prepare to enter university. Their coming-of-age journey is reaching its end but the adventure is far from over with the introduction of Solis. Her story has a poignancy to it that delivers a subtle commentary. Her unusual appearance causes fear and snap judgment among the villagers. Her introduction catalyzes Odo and the Odd Squad’s last adventure, starting with a discovery at a flower show. Unique powers are a central part of the story and add a superhero element with ghosts seen by Silas, Emmy’s dream body, Sephie’s abilities with brainwaves, and, of course, Odo’s translucent powers.

Tom Hoffman incorporates various science fiction elements such as journeying to another world, an evil robot, form-shifting aliens, and humanoids. These elements create a unique journey that is fun from the beginning with increasingly zany storylines and unexpected adventures. The tone is lighthearted with a serious underbelly that is revealed in the individual stories of the characters since the series began. The ending has a satisfying conclusion. Hoffman’s usual eccentric style is seen in The Transcluent Boy and the Children of Ice which cleverly blends superhero-like abilities, science fiction, humor, and wit to deliver another fun installment.

Essien Asian

Odo Whitely was not happy when his mother scuttled his plans of taking a tour of what may be his future university so that he can help Mrs. Beasley with her flowers. While he is at the flower show, he bumps into his friends Silas, Emmy, and Sephie who tagged along with him. They realize that their special rings have led all of them to the flower show for the sole purpose of setting off on another interstellar adventure. What they do not know is this particular assignment will need all their gifts as the Odd Squad prepares to do battle in a faraway galaxy. The outcome may well determine the fate of the Earth in Tom Hoffman's The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice.

The final book in The Translucent Boy series covers itself in glory with an exciting finale. It is not every author that can balance fantasy with science fiction but Tom Hoffman achieves this with a touch of class. Attention to detail is evident in every aspect of this captivating story with his colorful and precise description of planetary structures and the unique beings inhabiting them. The trees of Suvon are an ideal example of this. The conversations between the characters are lively and filled with more than enough comedic relief to lighten what turns out to be a serious story. Even the growing romantic subplot between Odo and Sephie has its share of light-hearted humor. The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice is a novel in a class of its own. This is one work I am certain science fiction purists will take a liking to.

Asher Syed

The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice by Tom Hoffman is the fifth book and the conclusion to the fantasy series The Translucent Boy. The story revolves around a rag-tag team of teenagers who have certainly accomplished more than their high school careers and ages might suggest. Odo, Sephie, Emmy, and Silas are at the precipice of the next chapter of their lives but are once again interrupted by the need for them to save the world. A lovely bit of embroidery delivers the group to a climate-controlling female alien named Solis, who they liberate and bring back into their own timeline. They ultimately discover details about Solis and her domicile world, which has been ravaged by massacre and roundly frozen by mechanized occupiers called Ice Children.

I'm so sad that The Translucent Boy series has ended, but what a fantastic way to go! Tom Hoffman delivers an exceptional finale with The Translucent Boy and the Children of Ice and, as is expected from the quill of a skilled author, it really hits the mark. The writing is simple and this makes the story accessible in a genre that has the potential to be hard to follow. Solis is a fantastic character and there is one scene in particular where she is fighting a Child of Ice and the description of her use of power is absolutely gorgeous. “Solis lowered her arms, her eyes on the green-eyed bioform, now glowing with a blazing white light, the ice around her melting.” While all of Hoffman's TTB novels have been good, I felt like the energy and landscape of this book eclipsed the prior four. It was as visually stunning as a story can be, and a perfectly fitting conclusion to the series. Very highly recommended.