BY A CHARM AND A CURSE reminds me of THE NIGHT
CIRCUS with its magical circus feel. This fascinating
and exciting read makes it easy to get lost in a world of
adventure. Jaime Questell has a way of writing that is
enticing and easy to follow but will keep you guessing about
what will happen next. I was drawn into this story after the
first chapter and found it hard to put down.
The characters are well planned and highly developed which
mesh well with the story to create a truly extraordinary
account that will stay with you long after you read the last
page. You will enjoy reading along as Emma and Ben's
romance builds, all the ups and downs, drama, and humor they
share. The side characters are lively and vivid which help
to add to the circus feel of the novel.
What can I say about the setting other then it is perfect
for BY A CHARM AND A CURSE. There is all the lights and
mystery that surrounds the circus with the unknown that
comes with the dark of night. Being part of a traveling
circus, you never know what the next town has in store.
Never know what to expect or what mystery to unravel. This
makes it easy to get swept away into the world of the
unknown on a roller coaster of a ride that you are not sure
if or when it will end.
Overall, I enjoyed reading BY A CHARM AND A CURSE. Questell
has written a truly remarkable story that is full of
excitement, mystery, vivid characters, and a plot that will
stay with you. I cannot wait to read more from this author
and hope for a second book with these amazing characters.
Carnival Fantastic isn’t like other traveling circuses. It’s
bound by a charm, held together by a centuries-old curse,
that protects its members from ever growing older or getting
hurt. Emmaline King is drawn to the circus like a moth to a
flame…and unwittingly recruited into its folds by a
mysterious teen boy whose kiss is as cold as
Forced to travel through Texas as the new Girl in
the Box, Emmaline is completely trapped. Breaking the curse
seems like her only chance at freedom, but with no curse,
there’s no charm, either—dooming everyone who calls the
Carnival Fantastic home. Including the boy she’s afraid
she’s falling for.
Everything—including his life—could
end with just one kiss.
We follow the gathering crowds toward the ticket booth,
funneling into the entrance beneath pennants made of
sun-bleached calico, the patterns mere ghosts of their old
selves. We’re not even through the ticket gate and already I
can smell sawdust and burned sugar. Shrieks of terror and
joy stutter through the wind, mixing with the excited
chatter of those waiting in line. Hand- painted boards
taller than I am lead up to the ticket booth, each one
featuring a different performer. A knife thrower done in
stark black, white, and orange. Two golden girls standing
atop a spotted horse, no saddle or reins to hold them. A boy
and girl, near mirror reflections of the other, hovering
over a crystal ball, dark shadows creeping in around them.
The biggest belongs to a trio of tumblers who tangle their
limbs together until they’re one muscled mass of human
impossibility. The sign is a boast, a dare, a
promise—come and see these men and be amazed.