Review! The Shrunken Head by Lauren Oliver and H.C. Chester

shrunkenheadThe Shrunken Head

Series: The Curiosity House (Book #1)

Co-written by Lauren Oliver and H.C. Chester

368 pages – ages 9+

Will be published by HarperCollins on September 29, 2015

Synopsis- In New York City, there is a building. The sign outside reads “Dumfrey’s Dime Museum”, and it has the “Largest Collection of Oddities, the Strangest Assortment of Freaks, and Novel and Astounding Exhibitions Comprising More Than One Thousand Curiosities from Every Portion of the Globe.” In it, lives the performers.

Orphans Sam, Philippa, and Thomas have been raised by Mr. Dumfrey, the owner, along with the other performers. Sam is extremely strong – so strong that he breaks things without even trying. Thomas is a contortionist – it’s like his bones turn to rubber. Philippa is a mentalist – a true one, who, at the least, can see the contents of your pocket. Then an orphan girl named Max shows up – she can throw a knife like nobody’s business, and she’ll make sure it’s not your business! When the Museum’s newest claim to fame is stolen, and people who interacted with it start turning up dead, the kids decide to take things into their own hands, especially when the police start barking up the wrong tree! Can they find the murderer before Mr. Dumfrey gets put into the slammer (on accusations of child-cruelty and possible murder)?

What I Thought- This was a thrilling book. It has a good murder mystery. The book has a rather dark tone to it, but that being said, I rather much enjoyed it and even though there are some heavy subjects in the book (murder) I found the story appropriate for a younger audience too. I think it is a credit to the authors. The characters are top-notch realistic. You really feel for them. It is really cool how the authors bring the story together after setting up the plot. At several points I thought that I knew who was behind it, but the authors added a good amount of twists and turns that I soon was guessing what I thought was true. It was a very fun read. I really enjoyed every minute with the characters, and am happy that there is at least one other book to look forward to.

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Categories: Age 9+

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20 replies

  1. Twists and turns are always fun. I just saw this book on Greg Pattridge’s blog today. Yay! Lots of love for Lauren Oliver and her co-author father. I love Lauren’s other MG books, so I’m sure I would like this too.

  2. Erik, This sounds like a great read with lots of intrigue. I love that it’s set in a sort of oddball kind of house, with oddball characters with interesting talents. Will add it to my list.

  3. Sounds intriguing with unique characters. You do such a great job of reviewing books like this. 😀

  4. Wow! A real interesting murder thriller with unusual characters making it kinda spooky too. Your review gave me the shivers… but in a good way. Thanks Erik.

  5. I wanna go to a place called Dumfrey’s Dime Museum!

  6. An interesting way to weave almost-super-hero-talents into the plot. Sounds great!

  7. Just in time for Halloween. Great review. My blog will be on hiatus from 2-18 Oct. So won’t be commenting.

  8. Wow Erik that sounds a blast! I’m not surprised it’s a Lauren Oliver.

  9. I’ve been wanting to read this for quite awhile, thanks for the review.

  10. Now that WordPress is accepting my comments I can say how much I love the cover. I just LOVE the cover. Sounds like an amazing book. Nice review, Eric.

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