Thursday, January 23, 2014

Book Review - Pantomime by Laura Lam

Pantomime by Laura Lam

Completed: January 12, 2014
Length: 392 Pages

Synopsis from Goodreads:
R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. Nestled among the glowing blue Penglass—remnants of a mysterious civilisation long gone—are wonders beyond the wildest imagination. It’s a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It’s a place where anyone can hide.
Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist’s apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.
But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada.
I am in a bit of a 'reading slowdown' at the moment... It is partly because this is the last book I really invested time into... Meaning I read it in one sitting and loved it!

I have decided to keep using this format. It makes me more likely to blog about the books I read. I borrowed it from Dewey, the founder of the 24-Hour Readathon, years ago.

Fiction or Non-Fiction? Genre? It's Young Adult Fantasy, so fiction.

What lead you to pick up this book? Memory. We were discussing books that Kobo coupons worked on and she mentioned she was going to be getting the sequel, Shadowplay. I had seen both books mentioned; but just never got around to getting them. I also have Shadowplay and figure I should just read it since I am not accomplishing much else!

Summarize the Plot: Man, this is one of those books that I hate to summarize because there are so many possible spoilers. I hate spoilers and I don't want to ruin anything for anyone, so I will just stick with the description I provided above.

What Did you Like Most about this Book? Oh, man... Everything. I have a strange fascination with books that are centred around circuses. I have several books on my TBR that deal with them. I have this strange auto-buy when it comes to them. That's mostly why I had planned to get Pantomime sooner rather than later. As I was reading it I discovered I had no idea what the book was even about prior to getting it. This is nothing new for me! Anyway, I loved the characters. They were all written so well that even if you hated them, they were alive for you. I enjoyed the setting. In a way this is historical fiction, but it is just based on the old circus days. It's a new world and there is a lot more going on than meets the eyes. This is one of those books that I almost forgot was fantasy because so much of what happens is believable. The fantasy elements are written in so well and most of the story is based around things that could have really happened.

What did you like least? Nothing really jumps out at me.

What did you think of the writing style? It flowed. As I said I read this in one afternoon. Sometimes writing can ruin even a story you are loving, but Lam did a very good job. She writes memorably and it is not one of the e-books that had a ton of mistakes in it.

What did you think of the main character? The story is actually told from Iphigenia Laurus (Gene) and Micah Grey's point of view. Gene is a débutante from a good family. Micah Grey is a young orphan looking for a new start. Gene is uncomfortable with the corsets and lace. She would prefer to just be a boy like her brother and skip all the courting and parties. Micah stumbles upon a chance to join a circus and soon finds himself soaring high above the ground. The two story-lines work very well. Even though their apparent backgrounds are very different, you can't help feeling for both of them. These are the sort of characters that will stay with you long after you finish the book.

What did you think of the ending? I liked the ending. If there was not another book, it wouldn't be terrible. There was no huge-cliffhangers. There are some questions, but nothing that would be agonizing to wait for answers for. That being said, I am glad there is a sequel to answer some of those questions.

I loved this book, folks. Go buy it if you haven't all ready!


  1. Sounds so good, and I love the cover. I don't read much YA, but maybe I should change that.

  2. I heard really good things about this one, around its publication, I really should look at reading it sometime.

  3. Knowing what the basic plot is, you've written this really well, no spoilers at all :) I wasn't interested originally but when I read the summaries readers had written I decided it was for me. And the circus is appealing - it's hard not to think of how good The Night Circus is and to not want to read all other books!

  4. I love reading your posts about books you love. :) Probably not a book for me though--don't know why, but circuses just don't do a thing for me.

  5. I love this cover. And you definitely have me intrigued now - because I need another book to read! ;)

  6. book is on my list to read... reassured to know it is so very good!

    tweeted, but Bk 2 SHADOWPLAY was just released (it sounds good, too!)

    ~L (omphaloskepsis)

  7. I'm not a fantasy person so this probably isn't for me.

  8. I love this format! Keep it up. Thanks for bringing this book to our attention!

  9. I want to read this! I am not a fan of circuses but I think they are great setting for books. All kinds of suspense and creepy characters :)

    Great review!

  10. sounds pretty good, Kailana :) I know that you convinced Ames to buy it...guess you convinced me too LOL

  11. I'm planning on reading more young adult novels this year so I definitely would like to try this one. I like books with a circus theme as well but I don't read enough of them! Adding this one to my TBR list right now :)

  12. This does sound good, Kelly! I am not overly fond of circus related books, but then the ones I've read that touch on the subject I've enjoyed. And I certainly loved Night Circus. Anyway. I will will to look for this one.

  13. I'm so glad you loved this! I'll look forward to your thoughts on SHADOWPLAY, too; I'm about three quarters of the way through it myself.

  14. Yay! I'm so glad you loved this one! I have Shadowplay as well, I'm hoping to get to it soon, maybe in March. Looking forward to seeing what happens to Mica.


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