by Laura Bickle
What is it about:
For fans of Stranger Things and the works of Neil Gaiman, Pawned is a Young Adult novel that blends dark fantasy adventure and noir — on the New Jersey boardwalk.
You can hock almost anything at my family’s pawn shop…even your own soul.
You think running a pawn shop full of cursed objects with your dad and grandpops is cool? Try it for a week and get back to me. Now try picking up any random object and seeing its creeptastic history play out right before your eyes — yup, that’s my little “gift.” It’s my job to sort out what’s haunted and hexed from what’s not, and do my best to keep all of us — including Bert, our ice-cream-truck-driving-lizard demon — employed.
So it wasn’t all sunshine, roses, and possessed samurai swords even before grandpops’ heart attack — but now things are garden-gnome levels of bad. Dad made a deal with the wrong end of the dark side to save grandpops’ life, putting my whole family smack dab between the forces of evil and our friendly local blow-your-pawn-shop-to-smithereens mobsters. And Lily next door…I shouldn’t even be thinking about Lily.
All I ever wanted was to get out of this crap town and away from my messed-up family, and instead it looks like I’m gonna have to use every scrap of magic in this joint or there won’t be any family left to leave behind…
What did I think of it:
As soon as I heard about this book I pre-ordered it! I mean: 'ice-cream-truck-driving-lizard demon'! Even if it wasn't by one of my favorite authors I wouldn't have been able to resist that! (Also: he looks like a T-Rex!)
Then Laura offered me an ARC and I was in heaven!
This is such a cool and fun read.
Raz is fed up with being different and with having to help his family with the pawnshop. Especially using his gift on the items coming in is something he really doesn't like. And when you read how it affects him, you can understand how he feels.
Then nasty things start happening, and Raz is in the middle of it, whether he wants to or not. As he uncovers secrets, fights for his life and the life of others, he will have some important decisions to make and lines to draw.
Raz is a great character, and I felt for him. I really wanted to bust some skulls for him, I'll confess. I was rooting for him, cursing others on his behalf, and hoping he would find a way out of trouble. I also loved Bert, the demon who looked lie a mini T-Rex. He may be a demon, but it was clear he had grown attache to Raz and his family. He made me wish for my own mini T-Rex demon who'll have my back.
The story was suspenseful, and full of action, betrayal, and strange events. I had to keep reading to find out if Raz and his family would survive. The ending is satisfying, but leaves enough open that I'll be hoping for a sequel, because I want more!
You bet I'll be rereading and that I'll get my trotters on a print version of this book.
Why should you read it:
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