January 20, 2022

#BookReview: Phantom Heart (Phantom Heart #1) by Kelly Creagh






Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Stephanie Armand doesn’t believe in ghosts or spirits. Despite her six-year-old sister, Charlie, insisting a masked figure is hiding in her closet, and the rumors at school, Stephanie isn’t convinced her father’s latest renovation project–a crumbling Victorian mansion–houses the soul of a monster. 

So when the very charming (and paranormal obsessed) Lucas Cheney takes an interest in both Stephanie and her notorious home, the supernatural and romantic activity escalates to an all-time high. And that doesn’t even take into account the dashing, British-accented eighteen-year-old boy, Erik, who’s taken up residence in Stephanie’s nightly dreams. A boy who may have something to do with the man in the mask, and the strange occurrences taking place at Moldavia.

A steamy YA romance with Twilight vibes, inspired by Gaston Leroux’s classic The Phantom of the Opera



Goodreads
Amazon

Rating: 4 Stars
My Review: This retelling was wonderful and full of twists and secrets and romance.  I loved the feel of the story and the setting and this retelling is one of the best I've read. 











From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—Seventeen-year-old skeptic Stephanie Armand refuses to believe the stories that Moldavia, the Victorian estate her father is renovating, is haunted. Even when her younger sister claims to have spoken to the masked man in her closet who has lights for eyes. And even when Lucas Cheney, leader of an amateur team of paranormal investigators, takes an interest in the property, and in Stephanie herself. But then, there are strange occurrences. First, Erik, a charming British boy, steps out of another time period and into Stephanie's dreams—the same Erik who Stephanie connects to a tragedy that happened at Moldavia involving an occult gathering, a curse, and numerous casualties. Then, a seemingly malevolent entity makes its presence known. It seems that there is some truth behind the legend, and behind the mask. Creagh's supernatural gothic romance is a fresh, updated take on Gaston Leroux's classic novel, The Phantom of the Opera. The world of the novel is hauntingly beautiful and evocative of the familiar tale. The plot is intriguing and the prose well-paced; however, the story's central love triangle feels contrived and the explanation of the curse, though inventive, is underdeveloped. The true delight comes with the characters, particularly the eccentric team of teenage ghost hunters, who bring both exuberance and comic relief to an otherwise dark narrative. Overall, the novel is an enjoyable read, filled with secrets, twists, and a surprising amount of heart. Most characters' races aren't stated. VERDICT Fans of steamy supernatural romances should be first in line for this one.—Amanda Harding, Elmwood Elem. Sch., Wauconda, IL

Review

Praise for Phantom Heart:

“With decadent prose, charming characters, and immersive world-building, Kelly Creagh deftly dances between a cursed past and a half-light present, transporting the reader through spaces and time on the wings of broken chords and bright melodies. At turns a haunting horror and a star-crossed romance, Phantom Heart emerges—as gothically stunning as a rose unfurling blood-red petals in winter’s stark white gloom—to reveal the beauty masked behind the macabre, and the rhapsody hidden beneath the silence.”--A.G. Howard, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Splintered series

“Riveting and mysterious . . . a Phantom of the Opera–style love story that kept me reading!”—Katie McGarry, author of Pushing the Limits

“This modern take on a classic tale of obsession and redemption will captivate fans of gothic, and the story’s humor and romantic tension will keep them turning pages to the end.”--Sonia Gensler, award-winning author of Ghostlight

"Creagh’s supernatural gothic romance is a fresh, updated take on Gaston Leroux’s classic novel, The Phantom of the Opera. The world of the novel is hauntingly beautiful and evocative of the familiar tale. The plot is intriguing and the prose well-paced . . . The true ­delight comes with the characters, particularly the eccentric team of teenage ghost hunters, who bring both exuberance and comic relief to an otherwise dark narrative. Overall, the novel is an enjoyable read, filled with secrets, twists, and a surprising amount of heart . . .  Fans of steamy supernatural romances should be first in line for this one."--SLJ

"Hand to readers who adore a juicy love triangle with gothic flair."--Booklist

"Romantic dream sequences are lush and swoon-y."--Kirkus Reviews









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