Friday, May 14, 2010
Review - Magic Under Glass by Jaclyn Dolamore
Bookdepository / Amazon UK / Amazon US
Librarything / Goodreads
Rating: 2 stars
Summary: 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.
Thoughts: I was really disappointed with Magic Under Glass. It had been on my wishlist for so long, and when I got a copy I was really eager to dive in.
There was just so much I wanted to love - an interesting, fantastical world filled with magic, faeries and complex social divisions. Unfortunately, there is nothing here that is all that special. The universe is basically Regency England with faery foreigners and a bit of magic thrown in for the hell of it.
And the characters? Extremely one-dimensional. Leading lady Nimira felt more like a plot tool than an actual character - moving from scene to scene for the sake of it. Her love interest, Erris, was as mechanical as his automaton exterior - and needless to say their "tragic" love felt forced and unrealistic.
Magic Under Glass was supposed to be a lovely wholewheat-brown-bread guaranteed good read. But it was the literary equivalent of white bread. Very disappointing.
Bottom line? Magic Under Glass is an old-school faery tale - lots of plot, no character. I didn't think it was a bad book, it was a bland book.