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Review: Beasts Of Extraordinary Circumstance

Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance

Title: Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance
Author: Ruth Emmie Lang
Genre: Magical Realism, Fiction
Page Count: 368
Published by: St. Martin’s Griffin
Date Published: December 4, 2018
You can find it here: Bookshop.org


When Weylyn Grey was five years old, his parents tragically died one snowy night in a car accident. Scared, he ran away into the forest where he was raised by a pack of wolves. For six years he survived alone with his pack until the day he met Mary.

Mary is besotted with Weylyn and his wolves, running away to live with the wolf family herself … until they are found. Now thrust into “society” and adopted by a wealthy minister and his judgemental family, Weylyn learns he isn’t like everyone else. He doesn’t fit in, he doesn’t talk right, he doesn’t like chairs, and he apparently can stop tornadoes.

Told from the perspective of those who have known him and been touched by his presence in their lives, Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance spans five decades of Weylyn’s fascinating, magical life. He may be weird but once he enters your life, you’ll wish he never leaves.


Let’s Talk … about this *simple* book:

From the simple lyrical prose, to the simple unassuming characters, this simple sweet story somehow came across anything but simple.

Containing numerous nods to classic fairytales from The Jungle Book, The Wizard Of Oz, and Charlotte’s Web, the story wraps itself around you in a very familiar way, feeling like an old classic, comforting story you’ve definitely read before.

The cozy, sweet feelings are further enhanced by an entirely loveable central character.

So Let’s Talk Heartfelt Characters:

Weylyn is one of those characters you just love from the get-go. He steals your heart and you can’t help but root for him and go a little mama lion on those who intend to do him harm. He is selfless and sweet, hopeful and observant, and just plain lovely.

While the story spans around fifty years of his life, we don’t hear from Weylyn himself until the near end of the book. Rather, it is told from the perspective of other surrounding characters such as Mary, his foster sister, a coworker from the logging company, etc. While I enjoyed Mary and his foster sister the most, I did find the side male characters voices tended to sound entirely the same. It would’ve been nicer to have a bit more individuality and a little more backstory of the magic, but this honestly never took away from my enjoyment on the whole and really just fit the character of Weylyn; the unexplained mystery that he is.

Simply, Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance is a hopeful, happy, sweet, at times melancholy, but overall joyful tale that combines everyday magic with fantastic magic, talking animals, and gentle love stories (animal, friendship, partner). It is weird and wonderful and will leave a smile on your face.

Overall Thoughts:

While nothing at all like I thought it would be, Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance blew me away. It is weird. It is charming. It is magical and hopeful and melancholy and sad and happy and … I just loved it. While characters did tend to take on a similar sounding voice, I just didn’t care. I was completely wrapped up in this magical little story that is a must for any contemporary lover wanting to branch out a little. It’s lyrical, simple prose had me feeling like I’ve heard this story before and I was thoroughly enchanted.

TBR Ranking: High

For Fans Of:

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