Title: All the Little Bones (Circus Hearts #1)
Author: Ellie Marney
Published: September 2018
Publisher: Bearded Lady Press
Readership: Young Adult #loveozya
Genre: Dark Romance
RRP: $4.99 AUD
I received a copy of All the Little Bones from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
A teenage trapeze artist and an apprentice strongman on the run from a terrible crime…
Seventeen-year-old Sorsha Neary’s life is changed in one night when she defends herself behind the vans of her family circus troupe. Now Sorsha and apprentice strongman Colm Mackay are travelling south, to evade the fallout and escape the long arm of the law. All they have in their favour is talent, an old promise, and slim acquaintance with the crew members and performers of their new home, Klatsch’s Karnival. But the question for Sorsha and Colm isn’t if the police will catch up with them, but when…
Dark YA romance with a criminal twist, from the award-winning author of Every Breath and White Night.
CIRCUS HEARTS – Step. Right. Up.
I have been waiting for All the Little Bones ever since Ellie Marney hinted at it way back when and it didn’t disappoint. It’s no secret that I adore her writing – the stories and the characters always strike a chord with me – but when I heard that she was writing a series of stories set against the backdrop of a circus/carnival I was especially excited, because I seem to have developed a taste for that kind of setting.
All the Little Bones begins right in the middle of Sorsha Neary’s story – she’s driving south, away from her home carnival, because of a terrible crime that slowly unravels with the story itself. There’s a deep amount of guilt that Sorsha feels, but the truth, of course, reveals that not everything is as it seems. Having lived her entire life with her family troupe, Sorsha is a little different to Ellie’s other female protagonists in that she’s not necessarily experienced the world in the same way, and her struggle to find a place amongst Klatch’s Karnival, and all the new people she meets there is really interesting to follow.
Likewise, Colm, her ‘getaway driver’ (so to speak) is also displaced, purely by chance, and has to carve out his own path – possibly deviating from what he was previously on track to do, which provides no small amount of heartache for both him and Sorsha.
And then, of course, there’s the romance, which – while not entirely forbidden – is not advised and yet it’s so damn good. It provides complications where needed in the story and relief when the characters need it most, too. Very few people write YA romance as well as Ellie Marney.
Overall, I loved it and I can’t wait to read the follow-up story. This was an easy 5 out of 5 stars for me.
All the Little Bones is currently available as an ebook, and will be released as a physical book later in the year.