**spoiler alert** I wrote this review on one of my personal blogs, mostly thinking about recommendations to my students.
I finished reading RoseBlood b**spoiler alert** I wrote this review on one of my personal blogs, mostly thinking about recommendations to my students.
I finished reading RoseBlood by A. G. Howard, and like too many of my evenings I stayed up very late to finish it. This is the first book I have read by Howard, but I have seen quite a few of her books in the "teen" section at my local book store.
RoseBlood is a continuation of sorts of The Phantom of the Opera, posing a few "what ifs;" What if the Opera Ghost was still alive? And if so, how could he have lived for so long?
As mentioned in my lost post, the story focuses on Rune and her gift/curse of music. RoseBlood Academy, a private opera art school outside of Paris, France, is the former opera house said to be the true inspiration for The Phantom of the Opera. There, Rune is suppose to be able to gain control of her gift, but it is not an easy things to do. Rune is drawn into a world behind the scenes of the opera house by a mysterious boy by the name of Thorn. Part of the story is told from his point of view and he lives below the opera house with a mysterious father-figure. Both know the old tunnels, traps, and tricks of the famed Opera Ghost, and they have some sort of plan for Rune. However, Talon and Rune have a connection that threatens the carefully laid plans of the man who wishes to control them both.
My favorite part of the book honestly was the idea that Eric was still alive, that the story could continue. I have loved The Phantom of the Opera since I was 13 and read the book the first time. I always wanted to know what happened to the Phantom and could not accept the end of the original novel for some reason. I know the main characters were Rune and Thorn, who were both interesting characters and whose story lines I did quite enjoy, but my love always returns to the Opera Ghost. I loved the idea of the preternatural life of the Phantom and the idea the Howard comes up with I find quite fascinating - and in the hopes of avoiding further spoilers I will not mention it here.
However, I was also disappointed in the writing style of the book. It started really strong and caught my attention, even if some teenagers would find it rather slow. Certain aspects of the story seemed 'glossed' over, especially at the end. The supernatural element is introduced quite late in the story, and then it rushed to the end. There was also the troubling issue of Rune's friends she made at RoseBlood. I really liked the characters, and they showed an amazing amount of patience with Rune, but at the end they were just shuffled off to the background and, in my opinion, trivialized removing the impact they had on the earlier part of the story.
I would still recommend this book to my students to read. In fact, I have loaned my copy to one of my freshman students because I thought she might enjoy it....more
I first read this story in Trigger Warnings, and I loved it. I really enjoy how Gaiman shows that characters can break classical archetypes and make tI first read this story in Trigger Warnings, and I loved it. I really enjoy how Gaiman shows that characters can break classical archetypes and make their own decisions.
The Queen does not have to marry the prince - she can be a hero, the cursed princess is not who you would assume it to be, beauty is deceiving - and the story is beautifully illustrated by Chris Riddell.
Like a lot of Gaiman's stories, this is a story about choices, and what I love the most is the characters chose to be true to themselves, not some preconceived notion of who they 'should' be....more