Pantomime by Laura Lam
Series: Micah Grey #1
My rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Genre: YA Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Release Date: February 5th 2013
Synopsis: 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.
My thoughts: Pantomime has two main characters: Iphigenia Laurus and Micah Grey. The Summer chapters(the present) told through the eyes of Micah and the Spring chapters(the past) told through the eyes of Gene. Gene is a girl who is not happy with her current life and Micah is a boy who had just joined the circus which is place he feels like he truly belongs. They have a lot of things in common. One of those things being a big secret.
I thought Gene and Micah are very interesting characters. Their journey to find their self-identity was filled with obstacles and I really felt for them. Their secret is revealed fairly early in the book. The secret will surprise a lot of people but if one if able to pay close attention to the writing and find the clues they will be able to guess it before the big reveal. I was very impressed with the secret though. It was strange and sad. I have only encountered a couple of books where something like that was used. Lam was very brave to include it in her book and I believe it worked amazingly well with the story. I can’t talk much about the characters or the romance without spoiling anything so I am going to stop here.
The atmosphere of the story is amazing. I loved how the circus was written as a very joyful but also sad place. The circus act scenes were very vivid. I could picture myself sitting with the audience. The fantasy element in Pantomime was very subtle as it is mostly shown in the myths that are told in the world of Pantomime. I really want to learn more about the world that Micah and Gene’s stories take place in.
The ending was really exciting. There was so much happening that I could not stop reading. So many things are discovered in the last chapters and it made me really excited. I can hardly wait for the next installments.
My only complaint is that there were some parts that I felt were a bit boring. This is only a minor flaw and it does not take much away from the story.
Pantomime was a great book. Filled with beautiful atmosphere, great writing, amazing characters, and a circus(because everything is always better with a circus). This was an amazing debut.
*An advanced copy was given to me by the publisher via Netgalley