I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Freeks by Amanda Hocking
Published by St. Martin’s Griffin on January 3, 2017
Genres: Paranormal, Performing Arts, Urban
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.
Freeks (yes it is spelled wrong on purpose, it explains in the story) by Amanda Hocking is a fun read about a young women who travels with a carnival. This particular carnival is loaded with people who have special abilities, such as the acrobats who can levitate and a necromancer fortune teller. Mara is one of only a handful of non-supernatural people and her mother is the necromancer.
They set up shop in a small town Caudry, Louisiana and that’s where it gets interesting. Strange things begin to happen, the carnival people are disappearing and getting hurt by an unknown entity. In addition to this worrisome development, there is a boy, because of course there is.
He is from a local family and Mara really likes him but doesn’t want to tell him she travels with the carnival. So she is trying to hid one part of her life half the time and then defend them the other half. It shouldn’t have worked, but it did.
I enjoyed the plot of Freeks and liked that it was a different type of supernatural read. It was set in 1987 so I loved the shout outs to 80’s music and culture strewn throughout. Amanda Hocking is not an author I have read a lot from. I have read her Trylle series and while I read the whole series, nothing really stood out to me. She has grown tremendously as a writer and it clearly shows.
She was able to mix many disparate elements and have them all work well and play off of each other. The pacing was very fast as the book encompasses just 10 days. The world built was very real as were the emotions. I liked the majority of the characters but would have liked a little bit more bulk to the supporting cast. I didn’t feel as if I knew them as well as I had wished.
When all was said and read, I really enjoyed Freeks and finished it in just under two hours so it is a quick read. While a few bits could have used more fleshing out and the instalove was super present, the detailed supernatural elements and the unique setting made me not mind those small issues. Now I need to go read some more of Hocking‘s books, as I feel I have been missing out.
Guest review contributed by 125 Pages. Laura is an addict. She reads 5-8 books a week. In addition to writing her own book reviews, she frequents other book review and blogger sites for just that little bit more.