Nov 14, 2012
#TheList, No. 703: Cirque du Freak: A Living Nightmare
The plot is interesting and I'm sure the rest of the series is as well. There's suspense, a circus of "freaks," a vampire, different takes on vampire mythology, and spiders. But I'll be honest; I was not a fan of this book. However, I think if about half of the exclamation points were removed, I would give it another shot. Seriously, it felt like every other sentence was pocked with an exclamation point. Maybe it's intended to sound like a child excitedly shouting his story at you, you know in that way that only a five year old who's talking about taking in the mail can accomplish. But to me, it just makes events that should be dark and spooky, more like a fun pony ride. "I saw the coffin!...I was scared!...I couldn't believe it!" Those aren't actually quotes, but they could be.
Punctuation problems aside, I think 5th and 6th graders would really enjoy this book/series. To be stereotypical for a moment, it has all the elements that would get a boy to pick up a book. Okay, stereotypical moment complete. This book is also excellent to recommend to children interested in vampires, but whom you want to keep away from Twilight.