Sunday, March 14, 2010

Magic Under Glass, Jaclyn Dolamore

Nimira is a music-hall girl used to dancing for pennies. So when wealthy sorcerer Hollin Parry hires her to sing acompaniment to a mysterious piano-playing automaton, Nimira believes it will be the start of a better life. In Parry's world, long-buried secrets are about to stir. Unsettling rumors begin to swirl about ghosts, a madwoman roaming the halls, and Parry's involvement with a league of sorcerers who torture fairies for sport. When Nimira discovers that the spirit of a dashing fairy gentleman is trapped within the automaton, she is determined to break the curse. But even as the two fall into a love that seems hopeless, breaking the curse becomes a perilous race against time. Because it's not just the future of these star-crossed lovers that's at stake, but the fate of the entire magical world.

I bought this book after hearing about it during the whole cover dustup. And I am so glad I did. It is a great story with so many clever elements woven throughout. I need to stop saying this about every single book but yet again the UK cover wins for me. Especially after reading the story. I like that Erris is included in the art as well. And in the end I'm not a huge fan of covers featuring photos anyway.

I loved the gothic novel feel this book has especially the homage to Jane Eyre with the whole crazy wife in the attic. I liked the references to Rebecca as well with the Mrs. Danvers like housekeeper stalking the forbidden wing of the estate and being menacing. So much fun stuff.

I also really enjoyed reading about the automaton. I hadn't really read the whole synopsis of the book so I was honestly surprised and intrigued by the whole plot line with Erris. It also reminded me a lot of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, which I also thought was really well done.

I really liked this line, "late at night I dreamed of things I scoffed at by the light of day" (p.2) and this one made me laugh, "... fairies are born of the dirt beneath our feet."
"What does that mean? Do fairy babies grow like carrots?" (p.49) That seems like an Anne Geddes portrait waiting to happen.

So in summary, this is an awesome book! My only complaint is that it ended before I was ready to move on. Please let there be a sequel!

Here is a fun interview with Jaclyn Dolamore on The Hiding Spot. She sounds like such an interesting person. I love all these sketches that she did for the characters. And the book trailer is cool too. She is clearly an artsy kind of person.

And the trailer had me thinking about the Musee Mechanique which I have not visited in years. Maybe they have a piano playing fairy prince on display.

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