Review: "Menagerie" (Menagerie #1) by Rachel Vincent

Menagerie by Rachel Vincent
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary from Goodeads

When Delilah Marlow visits a famous traveling carnival, Metzger's Menagerie, she is an ordinary woman in a not-quite-ordinary world. But under the macabre circus black-top, she discovers a fierce, sharp-clawed creature lurking just beneath her human veneer. Captured and put on exhibition, Delilah in her black swan burlesque costume is stripped of her worldly possessions, including her own name, as she's forced to "perform" in town after town.

But there is breathtaking beauty behind the seamy and grotesque reality of the carnival. Gallagher, her handler, is as kind as he is cryptic and strong. The other "attractions" — mermaids, minotaurs, gryphons and kelpies — are strange, yes, but they share a bond forged by the brutal realities of captivity. And as Delilah struggles for her freedom, and for her fellow menagerie, she'll discover a strength and a purpose she never knew existed.

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 I was very surprised by this year's releases for Rachel Vincent. Knowing her through her Soulscreamers series (even though I haven't read the books yet) I liked her recent release, "The stars never rise".

A circus in present America within a society from a typical Urban Fantasy setting. After a horrific incident from the 80's the cryptids, aka supernatural and mythical creatures, are hunted from the humans and have lost any possible rights to freedom.

When Delilah visits the circus, and after a horrible accident she becomes part of it, then begins a fight to understand and save the cryptids with the help of Gallagher, the handler of the creatures.

I like anything that combines the supernatural with the circus. The POVs were a little unsettling but I did like the multiple views of the story. The descriptions of the cryptics, their species and how Deli interacted with them showed the discriminations and how easily the human mind fears the different.

There is a base for romance although you have to search really well to find it and I hope to see it developed in the next book. It's a good read with potential. :)

About the author:

A resident of Oklahoma, Rachel Vincent has a BA in English and an overactive imagination, and consistently finds the latter to be more practical. She shares her workspace with two black cats (Kaci and Nyx) and her # 1 fan. Rachel is older than she looks-seriously-and younger than she feels, but remains convinced that for every day she spends writing, one more day will be added to her lifespan.