Sunday, July 8, 2012

FREAKS LIKE US by Susan Vaught

ARC eBook courtesy of
Release date: 9-4-12

Jason "Freak" Milwaukee and his friends ride the short bus.  They call themselves the Alphabets.  They've all been diagnosed with conditions like ADD, ADHD, OCD, ODD, or in Freak's case, schizophrenia.

Freak, Drip, and Sunshine have known each other since before elementary school.  They are now in high school and have learned to cope through behavior therapy and medication.  They put up with a lot in their daily lives, but at least they have each other.

On the way to their bus one afternoon, Freak and Drip once again witness a couple of bullies from their special ed classroom picking on Sunshine.  Sunshine is a selective mute so she suffers in silence as the two bullies attack her with taunts and suggestive slurs.  Freak and Drip hover over her protectively, and when they arrive at their drop off point, Freak considers walking her home, but she insists she's fine.

The next thing Freak knows Sunshine is gone!  Her mother calls asking if she is with Freak or if he has seen her because she never came home after school. 

The cops and soon the FBI are involved.  Freak's schizophrenia and Drip's ADHD complicate the questioning process, and it seems both are being considered suspects.  Freak tries to quiet the voices in his head so he can be helpful in the search, but he fears it might be too late to save his best friend.

Susan Vaught's FREAKS LIKE US give voice to those suffering from conditions most of us don't truly understand.  She takes readers into the mind of Jason "Freak" so they can sense his frustration as he tries to communicate what he knows but is afraid to reveal.  Presented in an hourly format of less than twenty-four hours, readers will be on the edge of their seats from start to finish.

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