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(Donovan Circus #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  508 ratings  ·  117 reviews
Even in a world of freaks, being a Firestarter is considered a dangerous Gift.

Lucy was born with the ability to create and control fire. She longs to leave the human world for one filled with Earthshakers, Transporters, and Chameleons, to name a few. When she rejoins the circus, it’s everything she hoped it could be - new friends, a potential love interest or two, and a pl

Kindle Edition, 297 pages
Published April 18th 2012
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Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  508 ratings  ·  117 reviews

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Start your review of Gifted (Donovan Circus, #1)
So, the truth behind circus performers is finally revealed and Liz Long has done an amazing job bringing this high tension, YA fantasy to life! GIFTED is filled with fabulous characters, a little young romance, danger, and a deadly mystery to unravel.

Lucy thought it would be like going home, to somewhere she would belong, be accepted and not have to hide her gift after tragedy struck and she was a teen alone in the world. The biggest problem seems to be her talent, she is a Firestarter and feare
This was pretty good, not quite my thing and I won't go on to the next book. Nonetheless, a well written novel. ...more
OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG READ THIS READ THIS RIGHT NOW! DOOOO IT! IF YOU AREN'T READING THIS BOOK YOU ARE MISSING OUT! .... so now that i had ...wait no i got a little more in me.. REEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAADDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD IIIIIIITTTTTTTT! okay so now that i am done gushing and having my little freak out on how awesome this book was i will tell you alllll the many many many many many many many many many many reasons why it was so AWESOME!

Okay so first and for most the plot! oh how i lo
Mandy (I Read Indie) Anderson
Lucy has now lost both her mother and her father so she is running away to the circus. The Donovan Circus is full of Gifted people and Lucy feels that may be the only place she will truly belong. With the gift of being a Firestarter, it may be a little harder fitting in, especially being a female Firestarter, which is rare. Returning to the circus life is anything but easy though. She must earn the trust of the other members and work her way up. Thankfully she is not the only new person starting ...more
Courtney Cole
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I love (LOVE) finding awesome new authors and Liz Long is certainly one to watch.

Gifted is Liz Long's debut novel and I have to say, what a promising debut!! Gifted is well thought out, has likeable characters (I love Lucy), (<-- No, I am not plugging the old sitcom right there, although I do love 'I love Lucy' too) and the pacing is great.

At the very beginning, I was afraid that it was going to turn into a slow book, which I personally don't like. However, I was pleasantly surprised when the pa
Jul 23, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks, own-it
I was immediately engaged as we are introduced to the circus and the world of the gifted through Lucy. Unfortunately this introduction phase went on a little too long and my interested flagged a little but don't despair. Things picked up soon as Lucy and her new friends go for a night on the town and from then on the story and action flowed nicely. Lucy is likable. The stupid love triangle less so. It is not a real love triangle because you have nice guy fire starter Keegan whom Lucy has a coupl ...more
May 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
What it's about:

Gifted is the story of Lucy Sullivan, a young woman grieving the semi-recent loss of both her parents. The book opens as she contacts Sheffield Donovan, owner and Ringmaster of the Donovan Circus, to ask if she can join up. Lucy was raised in the circus until her parents left to have a normal life. Now that her parents are gone, Lucy is anxious to re-enter a world where she can feel comfortable, accepted, and understood. She's never felt truly at home in the world outside the cir
Jennifer (Bad Bird Reads)
From http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....

At a Glance
I had so much fun reading this book. It got better and better with each page. Gifted has an original concept that makes you sit up and take notice.

The Good
Here's the Story...
Lucy is finally home. Going back to the circus after the death of both her parents seems like the perfect idea. It's a place where she can be herself once again. No more hiding her fiery gift. She will finally fit in among people like her, the gifted. Just as her life
Raquel Evans
Nov 06, 2018 marked it as dnf
Shelves: young-adult
I gave it a chapter, but despite being about a circus full of superpowers, I was bored. The writing was a touch on the stilted side, but not terrible— I could have put up with it if I’d cared about the story.
Jo Michaels
Apr 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who love books about paranormal abilities
I grabbed a paperback copy of Gifted on Amazon after watching copies fly off a table at a book signing conference. There was this innate need inside me to find out what secrets were hidden on the pages. Full disclosure: I'm a total geek over X-Men. Total. Geek. I used to play the video game at the arcade (Storm was my favorite character to play as), I own all the movies, and I love supernatural ability stories--I'm also a huge Heroes fan. Why did I bother telling you all that? Because if you lov ...more
Apr 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Before I review, you must know something about me. I have a whole collection of books I've started reading and never finished. My attention span is quite short, so if a book doesn't suck me into the story almost immediately, I move on to something else. Life is too short to read bad books.

I was captivated in the first few pages. The story doesn't start off slow and ease you into this supernatural world. It assumes you're an intelligent reader who can figure it out as the story moves along. I lov
Thomas Rydder
Dec 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Let me first say I received this book free, in exchange for a fair and honest review:

I'll resist the temptation to repeat the comparisons that some others have made to this book and "X-Men". Not because the similarities aren't there, I'd just rather go down my own path. Many of the main characters in this book do have powers - and they're just as cool as those possessed by the X crew - but there the comparison ends. Wolverine et al seek to rid the world of the bad guys - the folks in "Gifted" a
Veronica Morfi
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
Lucy is gifted, like so many others in the world with a special power, hers is fire. Lucy is a firestarter, someone who can create and control fire. Soon after the death of both her parents she decides it's time to return to the place she spent part of her childhood, the Donovan Circus. There gifted people, mixed with a few actual humans, put on an amazing show to entertain the masses. Lucy will make new friends and start to feel like she belongs again, but before the good feeling can sink in so ...more
Lenore Kosinski
May 20, 2015 rated it liked it
3.5 stars -- LOVED the uniqueness of the world that Ms. Long gives us. Seriously, why aren't there more books set in circuses? Definitely a cool premise, and was executed well with a lot of description to make you feel like you could really imagine it. Strangely enough, I almost felt like there was too much made for a slower beginning. So while I appreciated having a vivid picture, I kept wanting something to happen a lot sooner than it did.

Lucy was intriguing. I didn't always g
Summer Lane
Jun 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Lucy is a firestarter. What does that mean? It means that she can control fire and manipulate it to do her bidding...whatever that might be. After her parents die, she joins the Donovan Circus, an organization that is full of talented individuals called the 'Gifted.' They're basically people with superpowers who make a living as circus freaks. Mind readers, runners, earthshakers, you got it. But when people start showing up charbroiled to a crisp (AKA dead), all fingers point to Lucy, the newcom ...more
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the third book I have read that involved a circus of some form or another and really, I don't know why I don't read more of them. I have loved every single one of them.

And while they have all been different reads, they have all been just as fabulous and unique as this one was.

I really enjoyed the paranormal aspect in this novel. The characters, the family feel of the circus, the mystery behind the deaths, the details. Everything was just very well done.

I am so sorry it has taken me so l
Marcy Kennedy
Jun 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
I enjoyed the unique premise of a whole community of "gifted" hiding in plain sight as circus performers. The plot pulled me in right away as Lucy Sullivan joins the circus after the deaths of her parents. Although she grew up in this circus, her family left for a "normal" life and her father forbid Lucy from practicing her Firestarter gift. The story's suspense revolves around Lucy learning why her family left and who is causing the accidents and murders at the circus.

After a strong beginning,
Tana Schiewer
Jan 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to admit that I am a little surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! I've never been a fan of the circus theme, so I think under normal circumstances I wouldn't have bought this book; however, I met the author at a conference and after talking with her about the book (and other things!) I decided to give it a try. I'm so glad I did!

I truly believe Liz Long is an author to watch. Not only is Gifted a very interesting and engaging story, but Long's writing is terrific. She strikes the per
Aug 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a tale of twists and turns. While some of it can be predictable, it is a thrilling tale. Lucy came of as being whiney and weak in the beginning, but as the story progressed she became a stronger character ready to lead her army of gifted. I liked the blend of different powers that was done well. interesting, ready for the next one.
Patricia Burleson
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing

This is a very good book. It has strong characters and the main character is great you can see everything as you read as if you were there. There is action, magic, mystery, friendships and love. So grab it and enjoy reading a great book.
Nov 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-my-kindle
I have found a new series to love

I love the circus, and this series is perfect. The details all felt authentic, like I was on the grounds with the crew. Lucy is a wonderful character and I can't wait to see what happens next!
Ethan Gregory
Jun 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
FULL REVIEW CAN BE FOUND AT http://oneguysguidetogoodreads.blogsp...

My Thoughts on Gifted:

As I type this I have JUST finished Gifted and have so much to say I can't hardly get it all down in time. Let me just say this: I am completely and utterly speechless. I love paranormal, I love New Adult fiction, and I LOVE anything circus themed but holy-hell Batman, I was NOT expecting that read to effect me the way it did. Woah. Seriously. If I was to do a Top 5 Reads of 2014 (that weren't necessarily
Sarah {Literary Meanderings}

♥ Find my reviews on Blogger ~ Reviews by Bookish Sarah

- - -

Gifted is the story of 23-year-old Lucy Sullivan. After the death of both of her parents, Lucy makes her way back to the only family she has left - the Gifted folks of Donovan Circus. Lucy was raised in the circus until her parents decided to leave so that Lucy could live a “normal” life.

As a Firestarter, someone who can create and control fire, Lucy has never felt like she could be her true self outside of the circus. It's a constant
Jennifer Alvarez
Nov 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Lucy is leaving one chapter of her life for a new one. Being raised in a circus was the most amazing life for Lucy. Then her parents took her away to live a “normal” life for a while. After they passed away, Lucy could only think to be surrounded by those like her. With her new life being threatened, she must step up to her potential. This was an exciting story. Would most definitely love to read more. Very well done.
Oct 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed it!

It's my first book of this author and I found it to have a really good story. Unique ideas with the characters add to that. It's written well, but in a couple of places it ran a bit slow for me, but since that's my only real issue here I'd say that I can live with it! The characters are very unique, and I look forward to reading more of their stories. Go ahead, check it out!
Ron  Brown
Oct 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Interesting story

This is an interesting story. I look forward to reading the other books in the series when I get the chance.
Kristen Schrader (Wenke)
The exposition was shoe-horned into every conversation. Lots of talking, little action until the end.
May 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Lucy Sullivan was special. "Gifted". She possessed the supernatural ability to create and control fire. She spent the first several years of her life as part of The Donovon Circus, alongside her parents. Lucy's father was delighted that his daughter had inherited had inherited his gift of of being a Firestarter. He even said that his proudest moment was when Lucy, as a toddler, first discovered her gift by burning up the sofa. When Lucy was 12, however, her parents decided to retire fro
Lindsey DeLost
Reminded me a bit of Brandon Sanderson's Calamity series in some parts. I bought the 4 book series for 99 cents so I'll keep going ...more
Oct 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Fun Under the Big Top
It's been twelve years since Lucy Sullivan's parents left Donovan Circus and took her to live in the human world. Her parents are gone now, both dead before their time, and Lucy wants to return to her roots...and her own kind. Donovan Circus, one of the few places in the world that shelter and provide for gifted supernaturals like Lucy, is the only place where she can embrace what she really is: a Firestarter.

She's fitting back into the circus life well enough, making friend
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Liz Long is a USA Today bestselling author of YA and urban fantasy, most recently The Brighton Duology. She is a magazine editor in Roanoke, VA, and when not writing, can be found drinking happy hour prosecco, attempting hand lettering, or cuddling her dog, Fisher. She is the Director of the Roanoke Regional Writers Conference and the annual Roanoke Author Invasion, as well as a public speaker, co ...more

Other books in the series

Donovan Circus (5 books)
  • Burned (Donovan Circus, #2)
  • Hunted (Donovan Circus, #3)
  • Ignited (Donovan Circus #4)
  • Torched (Donovan Circus #5)

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