26 Sep 2017


BACK COVER BLURB: Orphan Ray has been separated from his sister. The only clue to finding her is a lodestone left to him by his father before he vanished. The lodestone tugs Ray towards a medicine show train bursting with astounding characters.

But something dark is following the train. Something that wants to steal people's spirits. How long before Ray realises it? And can he and his new friends do anything to stop it?

FIRST SENTENCE {CHAPTER 1: THE ORPHAN TRAIN}: The age of trains had come.

MEMORABLE RANDOM MOMENT{PAGE 77}: Ray raised an eyebrow. 'Did you just speak to your snake?'

'So?' Marisol lifted the fat viper, caressing him like a pet Pomeranian.

SOURCE: Ex-library stock.

READ FOR: The 17th of 24 books read for the Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2017.

MY THOUGHTS: Fun, action packed, a terrific ensemble of superheroes; both male and female and African-American (not much represented in this genre in my experience), wonderful world building, the type of book that makes you want to read up on the legend that inspire the story. 

American folklore meets steampunk, a sideshow peopled by the unexpected (the majority of them children of former 'Ramblers'), an ancient evil, the re-building of a monstrous machine fed by ... Aah! That would be telling, you'll have to read the book for yourself. 

Seriously though, if the thought of Hoodoo (Folk Magic), a siren, a pirate queen and the like, of what would happen if the legend of John Henry wasn't, well, just a story - to say nothing of all of the other elements (the rise of the railways, alienation, friendship, acceptance etc) that go to make this one of my favourite reads of 2017 - piques your interest then chances are you are in for a real treat.

* The first book in a trilogy (I'm delighted to have finally managed to get hold of the other two books). Largely published as The Nine Hundred Pound Hammer. As I cannot find a link on Amazon.co.uk to the book no matter its title, today I'm including a link to it on the GoddReads page. TT


Kelly said...

Not exactly my preferred reading, but you certainly make a good case for this one. It sounds quite interesting!

You're doing quite well scaling Mount TBR. Good job.

Suko said...

I'm glad you enjoyed this YA book so much, Tracy. I think I would enjoy it as well. Wonderful review!

Brian Joseph said...

This book sounds like a lot of fun. Your description reminds me a little but of Something Wicked This Way Comes. carnivals and related entertainment is so often the premise of great stories.

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a book which I would
appreciate very much and your enthusiastic
and excellent review definitely convinced
me to add it to my list.

Melliane said...

it's the first time I hear about this one but it looks good!

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

This sounds cute and something I'd read before I give it as a pressie. I really think I know some kids who would love it.

Bonnie said...

Hi Tracy! I have been visiting my old blog and find you are still at it. I'm thinking of returning to blogging but in the meantime you can find me on FB. Cheers, Bonnie Silva (Diamonds and Daisies)

Tracy Terry said...

Hello Bonnie, Still here at Pen and Paper. I'm so glad you are thinking of making a return to blogging.

I have tried looking you up on FaceBook but there are several people with your name and I obviously haven't connected with you yet.

Literary Feline said...

This sounds like a lot of fun. I glad you were able to find the other two books in the trilogy. Hopefully they will be just as good!