Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Showtime by Chloe Kayne

Showtime by Chloe Kayne
Releases: September 1, 2012
Where I got my copy: Author, for review

"The grandeur of the traveling circus is at its peak in the early 1920s when sixteen-year-old Laila Vilonia is searching for an escape from her bleak future. Behind the gates of the legendary Marvelle Circus, she is thrust into a mysterious world she never knew existed—a paradise populated with outcasts. It’s in this glamorous new home that Laila sparks a controversial romance with notorious sideshow performer, "The Disappearing Man," and learns just how dangerous her new life can be.

Touring the picturesque eastern coast of America, Laila’s immersed in friendship, vaudeville, festivals, sequins, and serial killers. But behind the curtain, a sadistic plan is brewing that will crack the very foundation upon which she’s become so dependent."

My thoughts:
We've all felt it. That itch to get away. In Chloe Kayne's Showtime, main character Laila actually has the courage to do so. But not in any small sense, mind you. Oh, no. This girl joins a traveling circus as part of her quest to get away from a horrible family life.
  Set in the pre-depression year of 1918, Kayne introduces us to a world shrouded in talent, mystery, and the undulating, relentlessness of circus performers.
  But under all the glam and glitz, lies a cache of secrets, lies, and murder. (And that's all I have to say about that. Sorry. I watched Forrest Gump last night with my ma...)
  Anyways, now to my favorite part of reviewing...Character profiles!
   Laila Vilonia was a very likable character. She gives readers a fresh new voice to read about, and c'mon. Her background is enough to make even me feel sorry for her. Now, some people frown upon pity. But I find that my own pity towards a character makes me think of them as more tangible and real. Laila gave me a sense of...not pity really, but a bit of shame towards her past. I wanted to see her grow and succeed in a life away from home (does this make sense? Dude, I dunno. But I'm trying to make sense here!).
  Her new band of friends included a cast that is as easily relatable and likable as Laila herself. Kayne throws in enough drama and tears that makes these friendships seem to be stronger than the short amount of time that they've known one another.
  Oh, and don't let me forget the always mysterious "Disappearing Man"! As if that title isn't enough to clue you in, the love interest in Showtime, Dex, is one hella hard character to like. I say this with absolute fondness, btw. Dex is hard to like because of a few things a) we never really learn too much about him, b) Laila seems to be iffy about her own feelings towards him c) he is considered dangerous by everyone else in the book, and d) I'm totally Team James.
  Team James, you ask? Sierra, is there another love triangle? NO, dear reader, there is not! Thank the lord on that, but I just legit loved James more because he cuddled with tiger cubs (aw!!), wasn't gay, and is cast as a total hottie. Also, there is probably no chance of him ever being in a love triangle with Laila and Dex. But still.
  Loved the story, loved the characters, and just to make this a little more interesting for ya, I'm including my FAVE little quote (said by my favorite man, James, on page 105 of my uncorrected proof):
  "You're here because you had no other choice," ... "You don't join the circus to fulfill your own dreams."
  Simply enchanting, is it not?
  Can't wait for more from this author!
   (4/5 stars)

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