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Review – Cirque du Freak

Assessment focuses: AF1–8

Context

Pupils were asked to write a review of a book they had read for a class anthology of book reviews to be shared with other classes. Pupil I chose to write about Cirque du Freak by Darren Shan. Pupils wrote a first draft and then commented on each other's work before writing up a final version for publication.

Pupil's work

Book review written by Darren Shan on a book of mystery

Assessment of a book review written by Darren Shan   Summary: Darren Shan writes review on a book Cirque Du Freak. Cirque Du Freak is a book of mystery, menace and suitable for 9-13 year old boys.               Cirque Du Freak   By Darren Shan   Cirque Du Freak is a book of mystery, menace and madmen and with more twists and turns than the spaghetti junction, this book is not one to be missed….   Darren Shan is just a normal 13-year old school boy when he gets caught up in the exciting yet frightening realms of the Cirque Du Freak. Becoming' mates with the acts, treading a very thin line with one in particular and finding out that the people you trust the most can be the least honest. Darren has a lot on his plate.   It all starts with the flyer that was to change Darren's life forever. It was advertising a freak circus, which he and Steve (his best friend) was soon to visit. Midnight struck and they were in their seats, ready for the big event. And it came and went. A few hours later, the show had finished but one person stayed behind. Darren had to stay to see all the action so hid on the Haunted Bacony. What he didn't realize was that, that was the worst mistake of his life.   Continuing his whirlwind adventure Darren steals a priceless item and ends up in a bit of a bother. His friend is in a serious danger and the only way anyone can save his life is, if Darren gives up his. Will he do the right thing? Will Steve recover? Will Darren's world ever be the same again? Find out in the first book of the eleven book saga by Darren Shan.   The story is really genuine, well written piece. Twist and turns you don’t expect. Crop-up all the time the characters are really detailed and you honestly have no clue how it's going to end. It does get slow at one point but as soon as the main plot line kicks in, it's absolutely fine. I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for the cracking reed.   The characters were convincing, yet Darren could have been better at times. As soon as you get involved in his family business and secrets though, you feel attach to him in a strange way. They were all likable, all rounded but all slightly odd characters. Like they knew something we didn't but the details did come later. I enjoyed Mr Tall the most in the book despite being a tad creepy. He was so deep, yet so freaky at the same time. It was fantastic! I enjoyed the plot a lot at a time, but probably wouldn't choose this book out of personal preference. The story would appeal a lot more to boys I think, and many would probably carry on to read the whole series.   Despite it being friction GOLD, it is not the kind of thing girl would go for. But still it was a great, captivating story and the plot was thick with content and fabulous ideas. Overall a fantastic piece of writing from Mr. Darren Shan.   One part in particular that I didn't enjoy and thought was rather unconvincing though, was when Darren's friend Steve tested him to see if he was dead of not. I mean, like any 13-year old would have litmus paper in their back pocket!   Despite that downturn I feel the circle description was just AMAZING. I don't it could have been any better I loved every word!   I would recommend this book to 9-13 year old boys, in need of a juicy story. Look out for the film as well as coming soon, sometime later this year find this book in any good book shop at a reasonable price of ₤5.99.