First Impression: Comes highly recommended.
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.
200words review: Laura Lam has created a truly amazing world in Pantomime. Micah’s life within the R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is mesmerizing. The descriptions are balanced so well, you can picture what Laura Lam wants you to see but there is enough room for your own imagination. Every time Micah walked the circus grounds I felt I was following right behind, in some darker version of Cirque Du Soleil – I loved it.
Of the two narrators I thought Gene was more entertaining and definitely more likable. Gene is vibrant and alive whereas Micah comes across a little bland, especially against the backdrop of the Circus of Magic. Laura Lam does this for a reason but without giving away the big secret of Pantomime I can’t explain it. And there is no way I’m spoiling that because it was one of the many things that made Pantomime a unique and wonderful read.
There were moments while reading that I felt Pantomime dragged a little. Were the almost 400 pages needed for the first book? Maybe not, but while I didn’t love every moment of the story Pantomime has turned into one of those rare book-gems that I can’t stop thinking about.