Written by Gita Trelease
Review written by Diana Iozzia / Bookworm Banter
This magical debut novel for Gita Trelease is nothing less of enchanting. We are thrust into the secret magical world of Paris, France, leading up to the revolution. We follow Camille, her sister, Sophie, her brother, Allain, and a number of excellent characters as they folly through this fantastically-paced, exciting fantasy. The target audience is for young adults, but my God, I think anyone could enjoy this novel.
This novel is reminiscent of many great fantasies and classics, having small pieces of the great “Harry Potter”, “Les Misérables”, the “His Dark Materials” series, “A Series of Unfortunate Events”, “Fantastic Beasts”, “Moulin Rouge”, “The Miniaturist”, and more. I do think there is something for everyone in this book.
Camille can practice magic in three forms: one to transform objects magically, one to breathe magic into objects, and one to make her appearance beautiful. The Glamoire is the ‘perfection’ magic, but it takes a dark toll on those who use it, aging them and sickening them dramatically. Camille has recognized how her magic can help her win riches at the Versailles gambling halls. As she perfects herself with the Glamoire, she disguises herself as a beautiful baroness.
This dark side of her parallels to the light romance she has with Lazare, a hot air balloon aeronaut. In addition, she starts to suspect and find out that he is not hiding all of the truth, as she does as well. An evil magician begins to unfold, a dark villain for this story. He’s young. He’s beautiful. He’s mystifying and horrifying. He’s one of the best characters in this story. Ambition fuels him, and I think that’s one of the best types of villains.
I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys magical stories, even if they are not your favorite type of fantasy. This novel has its downfalls, certainly, but the upsides are fantastic. There are not many things I disliked about this story, but I have to mention them. I did not like the incorporation of real-life people to enhance the story. We have some appearances, but I do not think they add to the story. In addition, although this book is great, it is very long. There are not many bits that seem endless or tiring, but if you begin this novel, prepare yourself for a lot of time spent. To continue, some of the characters could have been fleshed out a bit more, but I would really like to read a sequel, to continue in this novel.
In conclusion, I really loved this story. This was absolutely brilliant, and I will attempt to recommend this to everyone I speak to. This was absolutely a favorite, and I cannot wait to read more by Gita Trelease.
Disclaimer: I received a free advanced reader’s edition of this novel in exchange for my reading and writing a review. I was also a part of the Instagram Blog Tour.