The Mandevilles’ Marvelous Marvels by J.E. Miller

Janie and Andrew are two friends moving from town to town, as and when they make enough money, on their way to Fimaldi Hunu where they’re determined that they’ll find everything they’re looking for. Along their journey they hear about an audition for a circus – that just so happens to cover travel costs.

This peaks Janie’s interest and it doesn’t take much to convince Andrew to try out. Helpful seeing as they both have hobbies that align perfectly; Janie is an aerialist and Andrew is a musician with an engineering feat in mind.

The two decide that this could be a good plan, at least until the troop gets to Fimaldi Hunu.

Janie and Andrew audition in traditional reality tv talent show style and breathe easier, the hard part is over right?

Wrong. Very wrong. The ring leader runs a tight ship and doesn’t want any less than perfection from their acts.

One false move and you’re left in the current city to fend for yourself.

Luckily the rest of the crew are a bit friendlier and less threatening, with a variety of talents… and secrets. Their next location has some mysteries of it’s own that the troop uncover, while they try to mind their own business and maintain the ideals expected of them, but life has it’s own plans.

Try as they might to stay on task, they get pulled in deeper and deeper.

This is the first book in a series and it feels like we have only just scratched the surface of what there is to uncover.

I found the first portion of the book to be a bit slow and it was hard to get into. At times the speech didn’t seem to flow very naturally, the characters talked a bit too properly. I wasn’t a fan of the descriptions of the acts, I could picture them just fine, but they fell flat for me. I was much more interested in the plot and finding out what secrets Janie and Andrew would discover next.

The book really picked up after the first few chapters and that’s when I really got into it. There are many twists and turns in this book, just when you think you know what the story is about another plot twist is revealed. There are so many mysteries and secrets to dig up, I loved reading about them and wished there were more before it had come to an end.

The characters have some excellent back stories, and I’m a sucker for a good back story. I wish we got to see more of them too, but I’m sure they’ll be in the later instalments and it’ll be interesting to see what J.E. Miller has up her sleeve for us then.

*I was gifted a digital copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Maryland girl currently living in the UK. Practicing self care one book and mug at a time.

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