Review: Freeks by Amanda Hocking

Freeks by Amanda Hocking

(A huge thanks to Pan Macmillan India for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.)

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 bodes 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.

I must say that while the protagonist is Mara, my favourite character from the book is Roxie. She's spunky and sweet and her pyrokinetic powers are wicked cool! I found her the most well written of all the characters and thoroughly enjoyed her friendship with Mara.

Mara is an interesting character. She’s been with the travelling circus since she was a toddler and longs for a more permanent home. This causes her to have a fascination with houses. I enjoyed how she was a strong heroine and was definitely not a damsel in distress. There was one thing about her that I didn’t like. She mentions that she has flings and romances with guys while she’s travelling and most times leaves before they find out who she is. That is so not cool.

Gabe is quite a charming gentleman with a bad boy streak and I enjoyed reading about him. He has an air of mystery around him that thickens as the plot moves forward.

One thing that turned me off was the insta-love between Mara and Gabe. It was way too fast and so sudden. I think the story would have worked wonderfully even if Mara and Gabe had been friends or maybe crushes.

I LOVED, absolutely LOVED the diverse people who are a part of the travelling circus. While the diversity itself isn’t a huge part of the story, I quite enjoyed it.

The plot has it all – mystery, horror and romance. Despite a few predictable twists, I quite enjoyed how the plot turned out. The plot made sure that the book was absolutely un-putdownable. The circus background and the deliciously creepy setting adds so much character to the plot and really makes it ‘work’. I did feel the ending was a bit rushed but somehow it kind of worked for the book.

The writing is fast paced and simple. It was neither overtly descriptive nor was it boring. I think part of what kept me turning the pages hungrily was the simple but wonderful writing. I must mention here that I’ve read Switched and Wake by the author and somehow didn’t connect with the writing but I found the writing to be so much more better in Freeks. Also I absolutely loved the Tarot card art in the book that added to the creepy quality of the story.

- The plot
- The creepy atmosphere
- The diversity
- Roxie
- The writing
- The circus setting

- The insta love
- The fact that the ending was rushed

Freeks is a quick and exciting read with an eerie atmospheric setting that fits the plot. It has it's small flaws but ultimately makes for a wonderful read filled with interesting and diverse characters.



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