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The Wanderers (The Wanderers #1)

3.4  ·  Rating details ·  151 Ratings  ·  57 Reviews
Flo lives an eccentric life—she travels with a popular circus in which the main acts star orphaned children with secret shape-shifting abilities. Once Flo turns sixteen, she must perform, but she’s not ready. While practicing jumping a flaming hurdle in a clearing beside the circus, she spots a dark figure in the trees and fears he saw her shift. The news sends the circus ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 1st 2015 by Sky Pony Press
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Community Reviews

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Paula M. of Her Book Thoughts!

The Wanderers isn't really what I expected and surprisingly, that's a good thing. What I didn't read was not I was expecting especially because it was Paranormal, a genre I usually don't read. I love that it was not heavy on the paranormal-y side and maybe that's just me but because of that, I enjoyed the book even more.

Kate Ormand's words slays!!!! Honestly, the way she writes is just pure stunning! Ormand never failed to transport me wherever her book was set. I can really feel the atmosphere
Robin (Bridge Four)
Aug 22, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
DNF @ 25%

So I tried I really did and I'm not sure if I'm just not in the right place and time for this or what but every time I picked this up my mind wandered off somewhere else. I just couldn't get into it at all.

I found Flo to be tedious. Maybe she gets better later but she is a Pony-Shifter in a traveling circus that in the first 20% of the book completely frets over jumping over flames in her first show.
A. Shifter so speed Healing right, who cares if you get burned???
B. Really??? You are sc
Richard Denney
Oct 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Really, really enjoyed this one! I love circuses and carnivals so this was just right up my alley. More thoughts to come. :)
Buddy read with Jessica & Robin (although neither of them actually finished the book which probably tells you as much as my review will!)

I had such incredibly high hopes for The Wanderers, first of all I loved the idea of a circus setting and then you add in that the circus performers are all shapeshifting children who are travelling the country while trying to avoid the Hunters who want to kill them and I was sure we were going to be in for an exciting adventure! Honestly this book should h
For a while now, I've been starving for some good YA circus fiction, so I imagine my excitement when I stumbled upon this one and that gorgeous cover. The blurb made me wary, though, because it seemed like the book would take a more paranormal romance kind of path, not to mention that it feels like someone should've reined in whoever wrote it because it gave far too much away from the plot. I was write on both accounts.

My biggest gripe with this novel is that the circus is only a plot device th
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
~ I received an arc of this book from Edelweiss, in exchange for a honest review ~

Actual rating: 2.6 stars

The synopsis of this book immediately caught me.
Circus + shapeshifters? This is more or less the picture that came to my mind:

However, The Wanderers is not as I imagined it to be. It has such potential and could have been a stunning reading. It can't make the most of the two powerful themes it is expected to blend, though.
You can't feel the vibrating, magical circus atmosphere, nor the compl
G.R. Mannering
Jun 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Such a fantastic, gripping book! I loved 'The Wanderers' by Kate Ormand.

With an evocative, majestical circus background and a feisty main female character, this book enchanted me completely. Flo was strong and sassy, yet sweet and kind too, and her friend/love-interest, Jett was irresistibly lovable and dreamy.

The 'magical abilities' of these characters were powerfully handled by Ormand and the pacing was perfect. This book made me smile, clutch it anxiously and melt with the 'feels'.

I would hi
Melissa Robles
Dec 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
*This review first appeared on Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers*

When I first heard about The Wanderers by Kate Ormand, I became completely enamored with the storyline. It’s not every day that you get to meet a main character who can shape-shift into a horse (and I LOVE horses–favorite childhood animal!). Then you get the beautiful cover which pretty ups your bookshelf and makes you want to pet it all day (totally did btw).

The Wanderers is the first book in a series about a shape-shi
Seriously, this book is a work of genius. Kate Ormand is amazing. This story is so beautiful and intricate with such vibrant characters. I'll write up my review tomorrow. SO excited! Definitely add this book to your to-read pile, because it's a masterpiece. Damn, my heart is still racing from the last few chapters! Kate Ormand deserves all of the stars in the cosmos for writing this book.
Rhea Dsouza
Jul 08, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
Okay. So. A circus made completely of shape shifters. And when I say shape shifters, I don’t only mean wolves. Beautiful story, complex characters you feel all the things for, and a love interest who is so ungh.

Seriously, people. What’s not to love?

The Wanderers begins with a shape shifter, Flo and her musings as she watches animals perform all kinds of tricks on stage. Unbeknownst to the audience, the “animals” are actually shifters, much smarter than normal animals, able to perform stuff that
Kelly Gunderman
Aug 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, edelweiss
Check out this and my other reviews on my blog, Here's to Happy Endings!

Although I’ve never really been a fan of books that involve circuses (I’ve only ever read Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen), I thought the idea for this one sounded pretty interesting (a circus made up of shape-shifters? That’s certainly different), and I instantly wanted to read it.

Turns out, it really is as fantastic as the synopsis makes it sound. It’s completely different, and I had no trouble getting into the story. I
Heather Duff
Jul 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
I loved Kate's first book Dark Days and when I heard she had a new book coming out, well it was a no brainer to grab a copy with my eager mitts.

The Wanderers follows a group of circus performers as they barely scrape together a living. They are performers with a difference though, they are shifters.

I have read a lot of books with shifters in them and it is such a novel idea to put them within the confines of a big top!

The story centres around Flo, a young girl just starting her performing career
Sep 08, 2015 rated it liked it
Actually a 3.5 star rating.

Check out my full review here:

I love the circus, I love shape shifters, I love YA. So when I got a message from the publisher asking me if I wanted to get an ARC in exchange for an honest review it of course I said yes. Dark Days, the other YA book by Kate Ormand, was a book that I very much enjoyed so I looked forward to reading this one.
So let's get started with the things that I loved about this book. I loved the circus, I lo
Rhian Ivory
Nov 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've been looking forward to reading The Wanderers ever since I heard the unique title and when I saw the beautiful and suggestive cover I knew that this book would appeal.
There's something magical and secret about a circus, behind the curtains is where I wanted to be as the reader, to find out what really goes on once the face paint has been removed and the lights have gone down and Kate Ormand didn't let me down.

The novel opens as Flo comes of age and has to perform under the big top in fron
Inah (The Bibliophile Confessions)
The concept of the story is definitely strange and new for me, which made me interested to read it in the first place. I have to say I was a bit alienated with the story but it was pretty interesting to read.

The Wanderers tells the story of Flo, a shapeshifter who transforms into a horse. She, along with other shifters, work in a circus where they perform shows every night as their animal counterparts. Their group has always been on the look out for Hunters but what they didn't know was that the
Sep 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was at Uni with Kate and she's a lovely person so I was worried about how I might review this book if I didn't like it. Well I really loved it. I enjoyed the way that the character of Flo developed from her first faltering circus performance to her gathering strength and self-belief. The shape-shifter circus is an original and intriguing idea that could certainly develop into a sequel or even a series. There are some moments of pure magic in this book and the book itself and the cover art are ...more
Emma Pass
Sep 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Flo is a shapeshifter, and part of a circus filled with others like her. She has just come of age and started to perform, managing to beat her nerves to take part in the show. But when a performance goes wrong, she uncovers a sinister plot that puts them all in danger. Can she escape and save herself, love interest Jett and the other shifters - the only family she has – or is this the final curtain for all of them?

I was already a big fan of Kate Ormand after her debut, DARK DAYS, was published,
Clare Doornbos
Jul 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
There's a new crop of werewolf books but, The Wanderers really stands out simply because it has a different perspective. Not all shape shifters are wolves, not all supernatural entities are inherently evil and even if you have special powers, grown-ups often lie to kids, "for their own good". I think this book needs a sequel.
Katya Becerra
So newsflash, I'm a total sucker for moody books in which it rains a lot:)

Is anyone surprised? No? Okay...:)

The Wanderers was a unique take on teen shifters: a gloomy, emotionally raw and evocative world of orphaned/homeless teens striving for a meaningful change and finding strength in community. Flo (the protagonist) and her to-the-point narration was a perfect match for this story. I quite loved it.
(Full disclosure: I received a free electronic ARC for review through Edelweiss.)

On a scale of one to ten, my level of excitement over The Wanderers scored around a seven or eight - not bad for an author I've never read before. So I was pretty bummed to find myself DNF'ing this one at the 41% mark.

I mean, just look at that ridiculous cover: lush and gorgeous and full of mystery! I know what they say about not judging a book, but the lovely circus artwork featured on the cover had me jonesing for
Feb 23, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars ⭐

I was semi-hesitant to pick up this book because I really didn’t know if a book about shape-shifters in a circus would really be my cup of tea but I was pleasantly surprised. Although in the beginning I was worried I would ultimately end up DNFing the book by the halfway point I found myself totally engrossed in the story and didn’t want to put it down until I knew how the story ended!

Not only did I enjoy it but I definitely want to pick up the second book in the series soon and see
Sophia (Bookwyrming Thoughts)
ARC copy provided by the publisher via Edelweiss
Original rating: 3.5 out of 5
This review and more can be found over at Bookwyrming Thoughts

Kate Ormand takes a unique twist in The Wanderers, following a group of nomad shapeshifters traveling under the guise of a circus. Flo has been part of the circus ever since she was young, but has always thought of what the world would be like if she were not a part of the circus. When she accidentally reveals what the circus really is publicly, shapeshifter
May 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: physical-copy
I really enjoyed The Wanderers. I dove into it without scrutinising the synopsis — the concept of 'shapeshifter circus' was hook enough — and so the whole story felt like a really fun rollercoaster ride. It went to places I didn't expect, and I loved that.

The Wanderers opens by slowly introducing us to Flo and the circus. Juicy nuggets of world-building, such as the story of 'Lydia and the Wolf', helped immerse me in the story. I enjoyed learning more about the shapeshifters' world alongside Flo
Jul 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Flo is a shape-shifter - she turns herself into a horse - and travels with a circus of shifters. Now that Flo is sixteen, it is time for her to start performing - but she doesn’t feel ready.

Flo worries so much about the possibility of hunters coming for her, that she messes up her routine. This gives the hunters a chance to make their move, and now the whole circus is in danger...

This book was so well-written and fast-paced, I was nearly late for work finishing chapters and wanting to go straigh
Lauren James
Apr 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
A completely fresh and original story about circus shapeshifters, on the run from hunters. Jett and Flo were an excellent couple, and SO touchy feely! A horse is such a refreshing choice for a shapeshifter, and it worked really well. I'm looking forward to the sequel in 2017.
bookslovereaders Steph
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Maya O
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The concept of the book was whimsical and entertaining and there were plenty of ups and downs to keep me on the edge of my toes, but the writing style seemed simplistic and bland. I really enjoyed the way the author dropped the reader straight into the story and the level of empathy she was able to produce for the protagonist(s). I wish Ormand played more with her sentence structure and used more elevated vocabulary to create a sophisticated atmosphere rather than the middle school fiction novel ...more
Ms. Heres
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, animals, orphans
A circus made up of shifters...all of them kids who shift into different animal forms. Lots of action and the fight to survive against all odds.
Amy Jane Alice
Feb 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-read-2018
Review originally posted on!

The Wanderers was a quick and fast paced read, and although it doesn’t cover a long period of time, there’s still plenty of action to propel the story forwards. There may have been a limited number of locations throughout the story but Ormand’s talent for descriptive writing made each scene and character so easy to visualise, making the story seem much bigger and play out like a film in my head.

Whilst this might technically be a YA read, there is a l
Quirky, exciting and packed with action, The Wanderers marks an intriguing new direction for one of UKYA’s most remarkable voices. Yet even with one foot in urban fantasy, one foot in contemporary, another in dystopia, and more still planted in action-adventure and sci-fi, this book is no beast. It’s a cleverly written and surprisingly slim story; it has just enough twists and turns to keep you reading – and a body count that could give Game of Thrones a run for its money.

This isn’t just any old
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Kate Ormand is YA author of DARK DAYS and shape-shifter circus series, THE WANDERERS (winner of the USA Best Book Awards in the young adult fiction category) and THE PACK. Kate lives in the UK with her family, her partner, and a cocker spaniel called Freddie. She graduated from university with a first class degree in Fine Art Painting. It was during this course that Kate discovered her love of rea ...more
More about Kate Ormand

Other books in the series

The Wanderers (2 books)
  • The Pack (The Wanderers, #2)
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