Monday, September 5, 2011
All Beatrice Shakespeare Smith has ever wanted is a true family of her own. And she’s close to reuniting her parents when her father disappears. Now Bertie must deal with a vengeful sea goddess and a mysterious queen as she tries to keep her family – and the Theatre Illuminata – from crumbling. To complicate it all, Bertie is torn between her two loves, Ariel and Nate.
Beth says 5 Stars…
First and foremost, I LOVE THIS SERIES. Sorry, but I had to get that out there. It really is one of the most fun and quirky set of books published for young adults recently. The wit and heart (along with the originality) that drew me to Eyes Like Stars remained a constant force, making me chuckle and cry alternatively. This closing act definitely brought it home in more ways than one, with things both predicted and out of left field in the best possible way. I loved that the Theater itself returned to prominence as it feels like an anchor to the books. I actually read this one on a plane, which I think truly testifies to how good the novel is. I completely forgot where I actually was and instead found myself transported to Bertie’s magical world. The plot utterly pulled me in and kept me entertained. I finished it in one sitting, that’s how much I enjoyed it! I will say that this definitely doesn’t stand alone and really relies on the other novels in the series. I personally think that’s a good thing because it made me become invested in the story. I honestly cared what about happened to the characters and how the novel ended.
Oh the characters… all I can say is that parting is such sweet sorrow as far as they’re concerned. Bertie still had her spunk, but showed immense vulnerability in this book. However, her fragility fell on the side of endearing because she became broken, easy as it may have been. Even through all of the tests, trials, and pie, she never completely lost herself and managed to discover her identity without whining about it. The fairies continually delighted me with their antics and loving devotion to Bertie and cakes, cupcakes, puddings… where was I? The interplay between them kept me in stitches without seeming forced. Then we come to the wonderful strapping gentlemen, who spiced up the book. They serve to highlight each other’s strengths and weaknesses as well as Bertie’s. Dependable Nate and tempestuous Ariel both ended up in the best places they could have, which made saying goodbye a touch more bearable.
I’m going to continue recommending this series of books to people looking for something a little different. They’re wonderful, magical, comedic, tragic, and really everything a set of novels should be. If you haven’t read these books you really must, because they’re simply fantastic. I give Lisa Machev a standing ovation for daring to create a wonderful series in the face of Twilight and for bringing these characters to life. As sad as I am to see the curtain close on this cast, I know that they’ve provided me with enough fun and laughter to last through many re-readings.