Monday, 7 January 2013

Pantomime by Laura Lam

About the book
Pantomime is the debut young adult novel by Laura Lam. It will be published by Strange Chemistry on 5th February (Kindle edition) and 7th February (Paperback edition) 2013 and the book is 320 pages long.

Synopsis (Taken from
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.

What I thought
Pantomime was one of those books that instantly interested me. The plot synopsis sounded amazing and something completely different and exciting compared to everything else I have been reading recently.

The book begins with young Micah Grey trying to join the circus. The setting is completely magical and mesmerising, especially in the descriptions about what goes on under the big top. The world of the circus is initially what got me hooked to Pantomime, after liking The Night Circus, although these books are very different. The actual world that Laura Lam has created is very different from our own, with cities being dissimilar to each other and having a whole range of characters living there. The ways of life in each city is different and in the circus, are people from all over, giving us an eclectic mix of characters.

Although the circus setting and world created were fantastic, the protagonist was even better. As a young runaway, Micah is trying to find a place in the world. For some of the book, the chapters alternate between circus life and where Micah came from. The alternating chapters make it possible to really realise the situation that Micah is in and why the initial need to run away was there. I really loved Micah as a character as there was so much to relate to.

Pantomime has a massive twist which makes writing a review quite difficult. One wrong word could give away the whole story and this is a twist that you are definitely going to want to discover for yourself. This massive twist is what sets this book apart from other young adult novels and what makes it so unique and exciting. Laura Lam has found a gap in the young adult market and filled it perfectly, showing that authors can take risks and people will love them even more for it.

This is one of those books which keeps you thinking about it for hours, or more like days, after you finish reading it. It was also a book that I instantly wanted to read again, which is something I haven’t felt for such a long time now. I seriously cannot get enough of this book and if there is one young adult book you’re going to buy this year, this should be it!

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