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Unique and Disappointing (Charlatan's Boy by Jonathan Rogers)

I was interested in this book mainly because I wanted to read a fiction book through the Waterbrook/Multnomah bloggers program. Thanks to Waterbrook/Multnomah for providing this book to review. I was however sorely disappointed after reading the work. The main character, Grady is an orphan who has be taken in by a man named Professor Floyd. Floyd is not really a professor at all, but a man given over to senationalism and money making schemes. He starts a show called the He-Feechie show in which Grady hides in a container covered all over with various materials, hiding his human skin and then causes a ruckus. Throughout the book, Floyd gets interested in phrenology, card playing, and other various games to make a quick buck. I sort of felt sympathetic at one point for Grady because he was shown such abuse by Floyd. At one point in the book, Grady was labeled the ugliest boy in the world and was put up to show others his ugliness. Rogers does go onto to sympathize with Grady's character and how it heart it emotionally, even to the point that Grady knew he wasn't the ugliest chap alive.

The book has many twists and turns but is rather pointless in its overall aim. I found myself having to plough through this book in a rather slow and tedious manner. The crazy schemes that Floyd created seemed to lack any real point other than a way to make money. Lastly, I thought there was some character development with Grady in the book but he seemed to be too caught up with Floyd's view of him in the end. Maybe I am just not too interested in young adult literature but I found this book to be rather dull and boring.

Thanks to Waterbrook/Multnomah for the review copy.


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