Friday, May 14, 2010

Review - Magic Under Glass by Jaclyn Dolamore

Magic Under Glass by Jaclyn Dolamore
Bookdepository / Amazon UK / Amazon US
Librarything / Goodreads

Rating: 2 stars
Pages: 240

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.


  1. Oops, I don't think I want to read this anymore, your review sounds honest and real. Thanks for the review, I can take it off my TBR list :D

  2. @Kirthi - Unfortunately, there are some books out there that just aren't worth the time... and this is one of them. I'm sure your aching TBR pile is happy about it though!

  3. Sorry you didn't enjoy this one. I heard about it mostly for its cover controversy, but I'm not sure I'll read it.

  4. I liked Hollin the best. I think he had the most potential for character depth. I agree with you about Erris. I wasn't feeling their relationship at all because he was just so, meh.



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