The Key to Circus-Mom Highway by Allyson Rice is an entertaining adventure following three siblings traveling to Florida to collect their inheritance. The catch? This inheritance comes from a mother they did not know they had! Along the way, they are given the sad tale of their mother and the trauma she went through before deciding to give them up. The only way I can sum up this novel is by saying that Allyson Rice has given us one hell of an adventure, mixing dramatic trauma events with fantastic humor that makes every page of this book exciting.
Only a few books easily mix two extremes of drama and humor. The book almost feels like a movie with its emotional ups and downs and the various plots that all come together in a theatrical climax. However, despite the often silly humor and circumstances, the characters in this story are genuine and entirely relatable. If you have ever had a disgruntled family relationship, you will undoubtedly understand once you pick up this book. The conversations and jokes made between family members could happen, even if some of the events are exaggerated for entertainment.
Now this book takes place in the modern-day United States, though the author still took part in some exciting worldbuilding by giving us exciting homes, shops, and side characters. Even these side characters feel exciting to learn about as Rice gives us humorous introductions to each one. While, for the most part, these paragraphs of amusing tidbits have nothing to do with the story, they certainly keep the fun aspects of the story going, even as particularly dark subjects come up.
The Key to Circus-Mom Highway is a must-read if you want a book that stands out. I will be rereading it as soon as I have time.
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