Freaks by Kieran Larwood


Written by Kieran Larwood

9+ readers   All Shortlists and Winners   Debuts of the Month   11+ readers   
Download an extract Share this book

Selected by our Editorial Experts

April 2012 Debut of the Month and Winner of The Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition 2011.

The Times Children's Fiction Competition logo

This well-written and action-packed debut is even being considered the new Harry Potter for its originality but we'd say X-Men meets Oliver Twist with a whiff of Lemony Snicket thrown in is a more accurate placement. It's a terrific romp of an adventure set in Victorian London and featuring a band of talented misfits, who at night are a Victorian sideshow, but by day they are a band of crime fighters who put their extraordinarily special talents to good use by solving the monstrous mysteries that surround their every move in grimy London.

Meet Sheba, the wolf girl; Sister Moon who is faster than the eye can see and Monkeyboy, the human stink bomb. Be an early adopter and read Freaks before it becomes a bestseller!

A message from Barry Cunningham, Publisher of Freaks: I loved the way this book smells! You can practically inhale the strange aromas of stinky streets, rotting rivers and slimy villains. You will find your nose twitching as the story of the most amazing misfit crime fighters unfurls in your hands. Freaks is the worthy winner of this year's Times/Chicken House new writers' competition. Kieran Larwood has created one of the best new stories of the year!

You can find out how to enter the Times/Chicken House new writers' competition - now open - by clicking here.

Previous winners are:

Threads - Sophia Bennett

Muncle Trogg - Janet Foxley

Flood Child - Emily Diamand

Win books 1 & 2 in the Rory Branagan (Detective) Series!

To mark the publication of the second book in the Rory Branagan (Detective) series, we are giving away books 1 & 2 to to THREE lucky winners!

To have a chance of winning one of these great prizes, click the button below. Please note that this draw is open only for UK residents and is free to enter, multiple entries from the same email address will only be counted once. Draw closes on 9 July 2018. The winners will be notified by 16 July 2018.

Good luck!

Enter prize draw Draw closes: 09/07/2018


Freaks by Kieran Larwood

The Freaks are a band of misfits, trapped in a nightly Victorian sideshow but by day they are something entirely different.


“the most original central characters…it rose to the top.” - Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson, a judge of The Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition

“A really exciting debut full of mystery, adventure and dark humour” - The Bookseller

About the Author

Kieran Larwood

Kieran Larwood is the author of Freaks and was the winner of the Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition 2011.

Kieran is one of only two male Reception class teachers on the Isle of Wight.

His days mainly consist of singing nursery rhymes, tying shoelaces, trying to locate who has had an ‘accident’ by sense of smell alone, and vast, endless mountains of paperwork.

Kieran graduated from Southampton University with a degree in English and also did a foundation year at Falmouth College of Art. Ever since he first read The Hobbit at age six, he has been passionate about stories and storytelling.

Kieran lives with his family on the Isle of Wight. It is his dream to write full time and leave the ‘accidents’ to someone else.

An interview with Kieran Larwood:

More books by this author

Loading similar books...

Other Formats

Book Info




Kieran Larwood
More books by Kieran Larwood

Author's Website


Chicken House Ltd

Publication date

5th April 2012




I am so pleased to have signed my kids up as they are reading a much wider range of books and even choosing books out of their comfort zone.

Angela East

I have told all my friends, family & teachers to see for themselves just how great the site is. Without fail, they are hugely impressed.

Alexander Boxall – age 11

It’s a community united by a passion for books and promoting the best there is in children’s literature.

Sam Bateman and family

It’s so easy to find the right book for your child. Such an easy-to-use, yet in-depth website. 100% reliable.

Pippa, Jack, Liam & Matthew Wils

Writing reviews help the children with their literacy skills and we always read the books together which gives us good quality family time!

Cat Bisland (on behalf of the Bi

I love finding new books to read. My mummy and me look at the new ones coming out. I have written reviews of some of them!

Jessica Cobbin – age 7

Lovereading is just a convenient way to find new books and hear others opinions on them.

Sarah Murray – age 15

I love Lovereading because I often never know what to read and this helps you find a good book. I have recommended this to many people.

Shannon-Louise Masters – age 15

Lovereading 4 schools