Saturday, March 31, 2012

Review: Eyes Like Stars

Eyes Like Stars
(Théâtre Illuminata #1)
By Lisa Mantchev

Published: July 7th 2009 by Feiwel & Friends
Read from:  January 29 - February 08, 2012
Number of pages: 352
Source:  Public Library
Find it on:
goodreadsindie Bound

Summary: All her world’s a stage. Bertie Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater. She’s not an orphan, but she has no parents. She knows every part, but she has no lines of her own. That is, until now.

Enter Stage Right NATE. Dashing pirate. Will do anything to protect Bertie.

COBWEB, MOTH, MUSTARD SEED, and PEASEBLOSSOM. Four tiny and incredibly annoying fairies. BERTIE’S sidekicks.

ARIEL. Seductive air spirit and Bertie’s weakness. The symbol of impending doom.

BERTIE. Our heroine.

Welcome to the Théâtre Illuminata, where the actors of every play ever written can be found behind the curtain. They were born to play their parts, and are bound to the Théâtre by The Book — an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of them, but they are her family — and she is about to lose them all and the only home she has ever known. Lisa Mantchev has written a debut novel that is dramatic, romantic, and witty, with an irresistible and irreverent cast of characters who are sure to enchant the audience.

Open Curtain

I do not know for the life of me why I didn't pick this book up sooner! This book has been in the back of my mind on my to read list ever since I first saw it on the shelves when I worked at the bookstore. The cover art is simply stunning, and the tag line on the back "all her worlds a stage" should have gotten me to pick this book up much sooner than just now.

Our heroine, Beatrice Shakespeare Smith AKA: Bertie <- Great name!  lives in the Théâtre Illuminata, a playhouse in which the players are the characters (not actors playing them but THE actual characters) from every play ever written. <- how cool is that!? Bertie's side kicks Cobweb, Moth, Mustardseed and Peaseblossom from Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream, who are absolutely hysterical, I found myself laughing out loud at their antics more than once while I was reading.

I don't want to ruin the story for anyone so I won't go into any detail on the plot, but I will say the story is steeped in Theatrical lore and practice. There are plenty of The Bard's characters roaming the wings of the theatre for any fan of Shakespearean literature to appreciate. Anyone who has ever been involved in a theatrical production be it as an actor or crew will fully understand the banter between the scenic manager and the properties manager as well as the other non acting members of the company. And anyone who has ever sat in a theatre and witnessed magic happen as the curtains rise and fall will be completely under the spell of the Théâtre Illuminata. 


I could go on and simply gush about how much I loved this book (and the entire series for that mater) this book is one of my all time favorites (see the 6 "star" rating below, that rating is not given out lightly it's reserved for my absolute all time favorite books)

If you love fantasy books steeped in magic you will LOVE this book.  If you are a fan of Shakespearean literature you will LOVE this book.  If you have ever worked on a school play or any other theatre (be it on or back stage) you will LOVE this book.  If you have ever been struck by the true magic that is theatre you will LOVE this book!  Eyes Like stars is pure magic, a must read, so what are you waiting for?

The Rating:

6 "star" Favorite!

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