Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Retelling
Expected Publication January 10th 2017 by Harry N. Abrams
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In this modern day spin on Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide. Hoping creative direction will help her, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera.
At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn—an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks. As the two discover an otherworldly connection and a soul-deep romance blossoms, Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light and he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known.
| Ugh. I do not want to give this book a 1 star rating, but I did and let me explain WHY.
This was a highly anticipated book by me, because on top of my fascination for all things Wonderland [and yes, yes I did foam at the mouth over the Splintered series minus a few flaws with it.] So why wouldn’t I also foam at the mouth when a retelling of one of my childhood favorites comes to light? About a girl who is cursed with a voice of the angels and what she is capable of?
And then… her counterpart, her phantom who has been mentored by the actual phantom! Slips into the story, in a historical, faraway place in France.
It sounds interesting, the cover is beautiful, but but but… it literally took me almost two months to finish it, because nothing really happens to begin with. I mean, sure some things happen, but it’s mostly touching on the historical aspect of the story which is nice, but it also takes away from the actual story that Howard is trying to tell. Instead of getting me invested in the story I’m stuck on tangents of the past and the angst is through the roof on both parts.
Things become weird as the book draws on and it comes to light just what Rune is and who Thorn is and what he is capable of, as well.
It had the potential to be a really unique take on Phantom of the Opera, but it was lost on me. I think I would have been keen on Thorn if I was allowed to be invested IN the characters. The constant draw away from them made it difficult. I was more than halfway through the book when I wondered the story was actually heading. I’d put it down and make myself continue to read it.
I think the story would have been better if the historical aspect [the original phantom,] was a backdrop to the actual story instead of an invasive story that seemed to overshadow the REAL story. Still, that doesn’t solve the strange, strange quality to this tale. The unbelievable supernatural aspect that just seemed too far fetched and over the top. Ah, well!
Are you a fan of phantom of the opera? Did you see the movie or musical? Have you read the book? Chat with me below.