Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan

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Book 1

 Novel Summation:
Darren goes to a banned freak show with his best mate Steve. Its the wonderfully gothic Cirque Du Freak where weird, frightening half human/half animals appear and interact terrifyingly with the audience. Darren, a spider lover falls in love with Madam Octa; an enormous tarantula owned by Mr Crepsley. Darren determines to steal the spider so that he can train it to perform amazing deeds. But his daring theft goes horribly wrong. The spider bites Steve and Darren has to sell his soul to Mr Crepsley a member of the  vampire clan to get the antidote.

My Thoughts:

I liked this book a lot. It was well written, interesting, and fun. Im having a hard time writting my thoughts because it was mearly a taste of what is to come in the saga. As book 1 of a 12 book saga, we are introduced to the Cirque du Freak troupe. A group of random “people” with incredibly abilities. Also, we are introduced to the existence of vampires. The main character is Darren Shan. An average boy with a weird liking for spider. I for one can’t comprehend the liking of spiders since I am terrified. But, his love for spiders is what sense the problems in the book into motion. He may seem like a coward at times but when in the end he pulls through. He makes the ultimate sacrifice, his humanity to save his friend. In the process he becomes a vampire’s assistant. Another character we are introduced to is Steve Leonard. An aggressive, angry boy who is Darren’s best friend. At the end of the book Steve makes a vow which will most likely have a great affect on the events in the other books. We are introduced briefly to members of the Cirque du Freak, a travelling freak show. Each member is rather interesting. The book is easy to read and compells you to learn more of the fate of Darren Shan and the others. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a good fiction book.

Future Books:

This book is a part of the Darren Shan saga which consists of 12 books. Book 2 is entitled The Vampires Assistant and is followed by Tunnels of Blood, Vampire Mountain, Trails of Death, The Vampire Prince, Hunters of Dusk, Allies of the Night, Killers of the Dawn, The Lake of Souls, Lord of the Shadows, and Sons of Destiny. 

The book is also a manga series called Cirque du Freak.

Movie Connections:

This first three books of the series was made into a movie entitled Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant. It stars Chris Massoglia as Darren Shan, John C. Reilly as Larten Crepsley, and Josh Hutcherson as Steve Leonard. It will be released on DVD in Canada on February 23, 2010.

I saw this movie and it was okay. A lot of it was different from the books and it seemed like the also possibly revealed things that don’t happen until later in the series. I thought the actor choice for Crepsley was excellent, Steve was good, Daren was okay, I expected Evra to be younger, and Gavner was alright but not my choice. If you have read the books you might not enjoy the movie but it is alright.

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