A traveling supernatural sideshow has just arrived in a sleepy Louisiana town, and Mara Beznik, daughter of the troupe’s fortune-teller, quickly becomes smitten with Gabe Alvarado, a wealthy local boy. But her family of misfits is falling prey, one by one, to a beast that is stalking the campsite, and a series of shadowy encounters and twists builds to a battle-driven reckoning. Mara and Gabe’s whirlwind, class-crossing romance plays an important role without drowning out other central relationships. Hocking (the Kanin Chronicles) takes time to examine Mara’s complex emotions regarding Gabe, her ramshackle life on the road, and her mother. Although Mara doesn’t seem to have the same gifts as her fellow travelers, she is strong, independent, and pragmatic—no damsel in distress. The story is set in 1987, allowing for playful nods to the pop culture and fashion of the day. Important questions about poverty and privilege are at the core of this standalone novel, and they’ll keep readers hooked just as much as the paranormal peril. Ages 12–up. Agent: Steven Axelrod, Axelrod Agency. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 10/24/2016 Release date: 01/03/2017 Genre: Children's
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