Thursday, January 21, 2010

Book Review: Magic Under Glass by Jaclyn Dolamore

Nimira is a music-hall performer forced to dance for pennies to an audience of leering drunks. When wealthy sorcerer Hollin Parry hires her to do a special act - singing accompaniment to an exquisite piano-playing automaton, Nimira believes it is the start of a new life. In Parry's world, however, buried secrets stir. Unsettling below-stairs rumours abound about ghosts, a mad woman roaming the halls, and of Parry's involvement in a gang of ruthless sorcerers who torture fairies for sport. When Nimira discovers the spirit of a dashing young fairy gentleman is trapped inside the automaton's stiff limbs, waiting for someone to break the curse and set him free, the two fall in love. But it is a love set against a dreadful race against time to save the entire fairy realm, which is in mortal peril.

At the start of the story, Nim is working for next to nothing in a run-down theater that's frequented by unsavory men. After she's invited to sing for the wealthy sorcerer Hollin Parry, her life drastically changes. She's given nice clothes, good food, and even a maid, Linza, to wait on her. I really like Nim as a character. She was courageous, and she was determined to find out the truth behind the automaton, and how Hollin came to own him.

I really enjoyed the book, particularly Hollin's story. While the book was obviously focused on Nim, I was suspicious of Hollin at the start. Without giving too much away about his character, I wasn't sure what his true intentions were until I learned more about his history, and how magic hadn't always helped him.

I do wish that the story had been longer. Once I got to the last 50 pages, I was wondering how the story was going to wrap itself up so quickly. While I think that Dolamore did a good job tying up most of the loose ends, I did wish that the story had been a little longer. On the other hand, it did leave room open for a sequel.

Magic Under Glass
By Jaclyn Dolamore
Published by Bloomsbury
240 Pages
Rating: B+

*Update: One of the comments informed me that Bloomsbury has withdrawn the cover. I think that shows the power of readers, who pointed out that the character in the book is described as "dark skinned", but the cover didn't fit that description.

6 comments:

MissAttitude said...

Thanks for this review. I've read similar things on other reviews, good book but if only it were a little longer.

I actually want to read this book after the whole cover controversary, it's made me even more curious to read it and I'm excited for the new cover :)

Book Monster said...

Wow, this book doesn't come out till February? In my Country it's already out, but the book store is out of stock or hasn't received any yet. I so want to read this, it looks so good!!

Lizzy said...

Book Monster - I think it actually is out now...I think Goodreads just misinformed me haha.

MissAttitude - Thanks for letting me know that they withdrew the cover. I actually hadn't heard about that yet.

The Book Owl said...

Good review! I look forward to seeing the new cover.

Faye said...

Great review!loved this book! I wonder what the new cover will look like..hmm

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Cool review. I hadn't heard the update about the cover. Very cool!

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