Cover Image: Freaks

Freaks

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Member Reviews

Readers who are looking for another gritty, contemporary superhero story will find it in this. The writing is accessible, descriptive, and action packed.
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Freaks is centered around four friends who are ruthlessly harassed by three bullies. To release some frustrations they decide to larp out casting a spell against their tormenters, but they end up opening up a portal to a different world and something comes through it. Along with that they find themselves with super powers.

This book felt just like a coming of age/super hero origin story and I absolutely loved it. I loved all of the nerdy references and the fight scenes were really well written and easy to follow. I really liked how it showed everyone's different point of views including the monster. I also felt like the characters were fleshed out well and had different personalities.
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A group of four teenagers that are tired of being bullied band together and mistakenly unleash an ancient evil on their town. They gained special power during the release and I enjoyed learning what they were and how to use them along with the characters. I also liked the friendships they formed and that they took responsibility for their actions. A solid ya read.
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I received this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Copy provided by Imbrifex Audio. 

Freaks is about four high school friends who suffer daily humiliation at the hands of three bullies. When the friends accidentally open a portal to another dimension, they unintentionally allow terrifying, other-worldly creatures to invade their small Arkansas town. Discovering that they are now endowed with strange superpowers, the four teens dub themselves “Freaks,” the very name their tormentors used to ridicule them. The Freaks must fight to save the lives of family and friends now in mortal peril and thwart a secret government task force that appears to be hunting them.

The writing style, dialogue, characters were all very juvenile. The plot was very straightforward and there was no mystery to what was happening, so, basically all tell and no show. The plot was a bit lacking and the characters had no real depth to them, they felt like cardboard cutouts. They all talk the exact same and have no personality so I would often forget who was talking to who since none of them have defining traits. The last thing I felt was that it was so cheesy to call someone a geek for liking comics. This is suppose to be set in modern times and no one in modern times is calling someone a geek or freak for liking comics. I am aware this is part one to a series but there wasn't anything that had me hooked to want to continue on to the next. I will probably not be reading the next book.
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I didn't really love this one, but I could see that some of my students would.  To me, the bullying felt too cliché, like...I work in a high school, and I know it's not as bad as this.  That being said, the premise was fun, and the main characters were really likeable.  I could see my teens really digging this book.
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TW: bullying, racism, abuse, toxic friendships, gory scenes 

*****SPOILERS***** 
About the book:Four high-school friends suffer daily humiliation at the hands of three bullies. When the friends accidentally open a portal to another dimension, they unintentionally allow terrifying, other-worldly creatures to invade their small Arkansas town. Discovering that they are now endowed with strange superpowers, the four teens dub themselves “Freaks,” the very name their tormentors used to ridicule them. The Freaks must fight to save the lives of family and friends now in mortal peril and thwart a secret government task force that appears to be hunting them.
Release Date: March 1st, 2022
Genre: YA - Fantasy 
Pages: 288
Rating: 

What I Liked:
1. Fast past
2. Bullying is pretty realistic
3. The teenagers weren't annoying 

What I Didn't Like:
1. Some scenes dragged on at times
2. Some scenes read as confusing 

Overall Thoughts:

I seriously thought this book was a fun ride. I felt like being a teenager and being tormented everyday by the popular kids was spot on. I was also bullied in school for years and years so I get it.

I felt like the writing style was good and I was engaged as a reader, curious about what was going to happen to them.

I loved the whole mutant changes that happen with them. What bullied kid doesn't dream of becoming so powerful they can crush the people that picked on them? Duh I do. If I had these powers and I was in high school yeah I'd become the villain.

There were even a couple of moments where the book shocked me... The scene where dudes mom is ripped apart is both gross and surprising. Did not see that happening! 

Final Thoughts: I'm eager to see what happens to them in the next book. Very fun time and fun characters. 

Recommend For:
• Revenge stories
• Xmen fans
• YA books
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Wow this is a giant no thank you. I received an audio copy of this from NetGalley and oh boy is it something else. There’s so much that I found absolutely ridiculous and problematic in this book. It’s just not for me. 

⭐️⭐️ because the narrator was great.
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Did not finish the book. Stopped at 10%.
The writing was so boring, that I couldn't make it past the kid's introductions. I didn't make it that far but the reasons some of the kids were bullied were so plain and boring. The voice acting wasn't very pleasant to listen to and the accents used to differentiate between the characters were horrible
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I started this audiobook a few months back, but almost immediately DNFed it. Having come back to it, I am glad I finished it, but it still wasn't the best. 

Honestly, I think this one would be much better as a physical read and not an audiobook. The narrator's overdone Southern accent really got to me after awhile, but it did slack off just a bit throughout. 

The story started off very slow, but after the kids did their LARPing game and got their powers, everything ramped up. That's when I became more invested. Everything still seemed a bit haphazard and clunky as far as the story went, but I could definitely see the potential. Personally, I think it would have done MUCH better as a TV show concept instead of a full book. This could very easily make a fun and engaging series, but as a book? Eh. The concept is good and there, but the execution was a bit lacking. 

Christian became one of my favorite perspectives, and her abilities later on in the story really put her in the spotlight to pretty much shoulder the bulk of keeping plans in motion. Micah...Ugh. I know the kid had gone through hell and back dealing with bullies his whole life, but the whole revenge at all cost chip on my shoulder bit got very old, very fast. All of his other friends had faced equal or worst mistreatment, and they still found it in themselves to try and do good and be better people. It was very difficult to be on his side when he just seemed like he was out for blood all the time. 

The otherworldly demon creature was a great touch and really helped drive the creep factor! It was also a cool Stephen King callback when the creature talked about how fear "seasoned the meat" and made it taste better. 

Overall, it's not a bad read and I may attempt the second one. But I probably wouldn't pick it up again or necessarily recommend it as my top choice of YA thriller/sci-fi stories.
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I thought the Narrator's voice was pretty cool. I don't really listen to a lot of audiobooks. So I don't really know what else to say about the Narrator. I wouldn't mind hearing their voice on other audiobooks.
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•	Supernatural
•	Thriller
•	Young Adult/New Adult

Four kids are endlessly bullied by kids at school, but especially by the group B3. One day at Micah’s house, they open a portal to another dimension and let out scary monsters that start to enter their town and gain supernatural powers. Will they use their powers to protect the town and possibly be captured by the government agents? Will they use their new powers to take revenge on their bullies?

There wasn’t a whole lot of depth. I found myself really predicting the next move. I really think if we could understand the characters more and separated their narratives, that would’ve helped. With the exception of Micah, Kenneth, and the creature, I couldn’t really tell who was who. I think this book has a lot of potential and maybe the next one makes it all make sense. The narrator, P.J. Morgan, was one of the best I’ve ever listened to. She really helped me separate the characters and was amazing at building suspense. 

#Freaks #NetGalley #ImbrifexAudio #PJMorgan #BrettRiley #AudioArc #ARC

<i>Thank you to NetGalley, Imbrifex Audio, Brett Riley and P.J. Morgan for the Audio ARC in exchange for an honest review.<i>
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0 stars for the narration.

I'm sorry. I couldn't listen to this book. The narration is really.. bad. It was a struggle to get through even 15%. The tone was very melancholy and strange. 

The text version is much more enjoyable. I'd recommend that instead.
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I really liked this first installment in a new series called "Freaks". The MCs are four "freaks" in a high school, who after using some dark magic to throw off their tormentors, a bunch of alien creatures come in to this world. Along with those kids, one of their tormentors was there when the creatures came out. All five of them get superpowers, which after several people in the town get brutally murdered, they join forces to kill the alien being who's ravaging their town.  But there are more creatures out there.  The narration was really well done as well. I want to thank the author, the publisher, and Netgalley for giving me a copy of the audiobook in return for an honest review.
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(Thank you to NetGalley and Imbrifex Audio for a copy of this audiobook in exchange for my honest feedback) 

Four friends, relentlessly bullied, LARP (live-action role play) for fun with robes and a book found in an uncle's belongings. When a chant read from the book unlocks a portal to another dimension, all hell breaks loose.

Sudden superpowers, demons, murder, fight scenes, it's a fun book to listen to. It's like an Avengers origin story, if they all got powers on the day they also unleashed their own villain. The audiobook is like a comic book being read out loud. 

It's not deep, it doesn't delve too much into the past or the psyches of the characters. Everything is very "surface level" if you will. All in all, it's a decent little superhero story that checks all the boxes you expect!
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Honestly, I got about 30% of the way in the book and had abandon it. Based on the summary, the story had lots of potential but feel short. I felt like it kept lacking something and just wasn't really capturing my attention.
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I only made it a few chapters (like halfway through chapter 4) and I'm not gonna keep going. The antisemitism and sexual assault that's already happening, I'm not gonna subject myself to more.
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Here we follow a group of misfits as they try to survive life and school while being the constant target of a group of bullies. Then one day they discover some books and cloaks that an uncle left behind and end up releasing an evil monster into their town while giving themselves and one of their bullies super powers. The group initially intends to torment their tormentors with their powers, but when the monster is discovered and kills one of the bullies they know they must unite to save their town and each other. Fast and action packed fight scenes, true moments of honesty from the perspective of a bullied youth who wishes harm on his tormentors and his friends fighting to keep him good. A great read.
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This book was enjoyable not the best I read this year but definitely not the worse. I was hoping for more and it never came
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There is nothing actually wrong with this book. It is perfectly serviceable... and as a middle-grade power fantasy with some horror elements, it is fine. The problem is that it does feel as if the plot and characters have been done before (in better ways). A story like this needs a hook, and unfortunately, this story failed at that mostly because it felt too familiar to hook me. The characters felt like archetypes rather than fleshed-out beings in this world, the plot felt a bit recycled from a couple of popular TV shows and the world-building felt all over the place. Having said all that, the actual writing was good and pacey, I wasn't bored reading this and even though I wasn't surprised, I also wasn't disappointed. It all adds up to a fairly run-of-the-mill story about the nerdy kids and superpowers that I wouldn't recommend over so many other great books, but wouldn't discourage anyone from reading if they really wanted to.

As for the audio, I don't know if it was a directorial decision or a stylistic choice from the narrator, but the whole book was narrated in a strange cadence that detracted rather than enhanced. There were very few character differences in terms of how the narrator read the parts and with a big cast like this, it would have helped. There wasn't anything egregiously bad, but there could have been many ways to improve on the performance.
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I appreciate the story that the writer is trying to tell, and I think I would have had an easier time if I had had the physical copy of the book compared to the Audio Book. I found the narrator's voice to be distracting, especially when she would use Southern or different accents than her own.
I love the story and the build up of the book. I plan on moving on to the next book in the series, just in physical form.
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