Year of the Beasts – Cecil Castellucci and Nate Powell

 Synopsis from Goodreads.

Every summer the trucks roll in, bringing the carnival and its infinite possibilities to town. This year Tessa and her younger sister Lulu are un-chaperoned and want to be first in line to experience the rides, the food . . . and the boys. Except this summer, jealousy will invade their relationship for the first time, setting in motion a course of events that can only end in tragedy, putting everyone’s love and friendship to the test.  Alternating chapters of prose and comics are interwoven in this extraordinary novel that will break your heart and crack it wide open at the same time.




I wish I had some kind of superpower that allowed me to touch a book and get a feel of how much it was going to destroy me.
[Also, wouldn’t that make an incredibly geeky fantastic TV programme that only I would watch?]
Because I thought that this book was going to be a sweet book about first kisses and sisters and lovely things.
And it was.
But it was also the kind of book that punches you in the gut.
Multiple times.
And then just as you’ve got your breath back?
That’s it slapping you in the face.

I’m kind of tempted to leave this review there because that’s basically how I’m still feeling about this book and I finished it a good few days ago. But I like the sound of my fingers tippy-tapping against my keyboard.

This book is so clever. I didn’t really understand the connection between the two alternating chapters (one is written in prose and the next is a graphic novel) , and I can understand why people wouldn’t really like the style, but it didn’t bother me at all especially when the pictures looked like this.

Gorgeous, right?

And the thing about this book is that I can’t even say that there was a huge twist. Because it was right there in front of me from the beginning.
But that’s all I’m saying.
This book was genius and I’m still feeling a little wobbly with surprise at the turn of events.

I picked up this book because I was feeling sorry for myself and wanted a gentle book that was the equivalent of a literary cuddle. Instead I got a punch in the face and a broken heart and it was excellent.

I received a copy of this book from the publishers via Netgalley.

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