Thursday, April 1, 2010

Book review: "The Phantom of The Opera" - Gaston Leroux

As promissed, in this post I'm writing about "the Phantom of The Opera" which I finished reading a few days ago.

"A haunting tale of suspense and intrigue set in nineteenth-century Paris.
As Monsieurs Richard and Moncharmin prepare to take over as acting managers of the Opera House, they discover their predecessors have bequeathed them the 'Opera Ghost'. A separate memeorandum-book has been set aside for his various whims, including extravagant financial needs. Heedless of the numerous warnings to comply with these strange demands the managers shrug it all off as a practical joke taken too far. Then a sequence of eerie coincindences and tragic events follow, culminating in the suden disappearence of the beautiful prima donna Christine Daaé in mid-performance.

Tortured by the pangs of unrequited love, the mysterious figure linving beneath the Opera House has been awaiting his chance to strike - and once he does, he is deadly..."


I really, trully enjoyed reading this book and I found it really entertaining. I've seen the movie as well and I think it's great but you cannot compare the book with the movie. The storyline is quite different in the book and much more complex and detailed. The Opera Ghost is a very interesting character and he is extremely smart which makes the story so captivating. The tricks 'he' plays on the opera people and the way he knows every little corner/door/room of the Opera House by heart amazes me. It's funny how he's believed to be the "bad guy" but I still can't see him like that because after all he has all the reasons to get revenge...I guess 'he' just doesn't like people or things getting in the way of his plans, for 'he' wishes to have what every man wishes: a normal life and wife who loves him, by his side. The final part of the book was the most interesting in my opinion because I really liked the description of the "Torture Chamber" created by the Opera Ghost where the "Rosy Hours of Mazenderan" used to take place....That must be the most creative thing ever!
All in all it is a great story and I honestly recommend it to you. :)


And some quotes that I like:

"By pitying him the other night, the night of the masked ball. When you went to your dressing-room, did you not say, 'Poor Erik?' Well, Christine, there was a poor Raoul who overheard you."

"Mademoiselle, I have the honor to ask for your hand.
- Why, you have both of them already, my dear betrothed!...Oh, Raoul, how happy we shall be!...We must play at being engaged all day long."

"So she disappeared in the middle of the performance? he reapeated.
- Yes, she was carried off in the Prison Act, at the moment when she was invoking the aid of the angels; but I doubt if she was carried off by an angel."

"A ghost, he said, who on the same evening, carries off an opera-singer and steals twenty-thousand francs is a ghost who must have his hands very full!"

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