From the Master of Horror comes the first gripping book in the twelve book New York Times bestselling Saga of Darren Shan. Start the tale from the beginning in the book that inspired the feature film The Vampire's Assistant and petrified devoted fans worldwide.
A young boy named Darren Shan and his best friend, Steve, get tickets to the Cirque Du Freak, a wonderfully gothic freak show featuring weird, frightening half human/half animals who interact terrifyingly with the audience. In the midst of the excitement, true terror raises its head when Steve recognizes that one of the performers-- Mr. Crepsley-- is a vampire!
Stever remains after the show finishes to confront the vampire-- but his motives are surprising! In the shadows of a crumbling theater, a horrified Darren eavesdrops on his friend and the vampire, and is witness to a monstrous, disturbing plea. As if by destiny, Darren is pulled to Mr. Crepsley and what follows is his horrifying descent into the dark and bloody world of vampires.
This is the beginning of Darren's story.
With strong sales overseas and a movie deal in the works, book one in The Saga of Darren Shan series is poised to capture a wide audience of series horror readers. After a rather slow buildup, a boy with the same name as the author sneaks out with best friend Steve to an illicit freak show, and his life becomes entangled with a vampire spider-wrangler, Mr. Crepsley. "This is a true story," writes Shan. "In real life, bad things happen. People die. Fights are lost. Evil often wins." The scenario is compelling, and the author mines the exploitative history of early 20th-century sideshows to create an artfully macabre "Cirque du Freak." But Darren's actions are often undermotivated: "I can't explain why Madam Octa meant so much to me, or why I was placing my life in such danger to have her. Looking back, I'm no longer sure what drove me on." Also his intermittent attraction to and repulsion by the vampire is never fully explored. His behavior may be explained in the sequel, The Vampire's Assistant (due in Sept.), but the open ending leaves so many loose ends that readers may leave more frustrated than intrigued, especially since the characters' wooden dialogue drains them of personality ("I'm upset," says Steve. "It hurt, what Mr. Crepsley said, and you ignoring me at school... If you break up our friendship, I don't know what I'll do"). Readers interested in boys becoming vampires would be better served by M.T. Anderson's Thirsty and those fascinated with freaks by Iain Lawrence's Ghost Boy. Ages 10-up.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Best series ever!
I hated reading when I was younger, but after reading this series, I LOVE reading books all the time! I recommend for any age!
The movie was boring, but the book is so great! Some parts of the series were horribly depressing, but the end always left me hungry for more.
Best book saga ever!!!!!! You must read this heart stoping saga. It will have you biting your nails saying no no it can't be,jumping up and down saying yes yes!!!! And possibly crying. So many twists and turns ups and down you will never get bored. Trust me you won't be able to put these books down. Wonderful ending in Sons of Destiny that will make you cry(but in a good way) you have to read them all. I would recommend them to everyone.