Monday, 9 January 2017

Book Review: Freeks by Amanda Hocking

Title: Freeks
Author: Amanda Hocking
Author Info: Website|Facebook|Twitter|Instagram
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Source: NetGalley
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: 3rd January 2017
Rating: 4 stars

Tell Me About It
Welcome to Gideon Davorin’s Traveling Sideshow, where necromancy, magical visions, and pyrokinesis are more than just part of the act…

Mara has always longed for a normal life in a normal town where no one has the ability to levitate or predict the future. Instead, she roams from place to place, cleaning the tiger cage while her friends perform supernatural feats every night.

When the struggling sideshow is miraculously offered the money they need if they set up camp in Caudry, Louisiana, Mara meets local-boy Gabe…and a normal life has never been more appealing.

But before long, performers begin disappearing and bodies are found mauled by an invisible beast. Mara realizes that there’s a sinister presence lurking in the town with its sights set on getting rid of the sideshow freeks. In order to unravel the truth before the attacker kills everyone Mara holds dear, she has seven days to take control of a power she didn’t know she was capable of—one that could change her future forever.
My Thoughts
When I fist saw the cover of Freeks I knew I had to read it, and then when I saw the author was Amanda Hocking I couldn't request it fast enough. I've only read Amanda's Trylle and Kanin Chronicles books and really enjoyed them, so going into Freeks I knew what to expect from Amanda, but not what to expect from this new book, that is completely in the opposite direction of the above mentioned series.

The protagonist of the book is Mara, who travels with ;Gideon Davorin's Traveling Sideshow with her Mum. During her time she has made a few friends, and the whole show feels more like a big family rather than a group of friends travelling together. One thing the quickly caught my attention about this book was the different abilities that each person has, from telekenisis, to healing, strength, and necromancy. The show has traveled to Caudry for work, thanks to an old friend getting them the job. They need the money to be able to continue travelling, and working, or they won't have a penny to thier names. When they finally arrive at Caudry things aren't as they expected, with missing friends, strange goings on, and some seriously dodgy people, will the show make the money they desperately need before it's too late.

Freeks was a book that I devoured and I fell into the world the minute I began reading. I loved the added touch of tarot cards spaced between chapters, which is a connection to Mara's Mum. I liked that no person had the same ability, those who have them had different ones, that work well together when needed. There were also 'normal' people in the show, but these aren't shunned, and neither are the ones with abilities. They work together a a great team, filling in where needed, even if it takes three 'normals' to move a door, they do it. I like that each new chapter brings a new piece to the puzzle, or a new twist to the story that I did not expect, which kept me wondering right up to the very last few chapters what was going to happen.

Final Verdict
Freeks was a book that I really enjoyed, and my expectations about Amanda's writing were blown away with this. I liked the progression of the story itself, and how the plot slowly unravels. My only issue is that it's a standalone. I would love to follow Gideon Davorin's Traveling Sideshow in another adventure in another town.

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