This one’s been written about and sung and danced about and even immortalised by Scooby Doo. And still, in my opinion, nothing could do the original justice.
Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera is simply beyond brilliant and I can’t even begin to pay homage to the imagination it takes to write something like that!
It’s an oft-told tale by now, the story of the Phantom who haunted the Opera, the one who must be paid meticulously and always feared; the one who enamoured Christine Daaé and sought to immortalise her in his own warped world.
The story left me awed in so many ways that the revisit did not lessen in the least. His framing of the character of the Phantom – from the myth to the man behind the mask, and the eerie portrayal of the story of Daaé, the not-so brilliant opera star, who met her “God” and suddenly astounded everybody with her talent and then her disappearance. And then the eventual hunt for her that leads her rescuers and the readers into parts of the Opera house they could not have imagined.
Perhaps, to readers today some of it might not read entirely new but remember that Leroux wrote The Phantom in the early 1900’s when it was pretty much uncharted territory. It is said that Leroux actually sat with an architectural plan of the Paris Opera House when he wrote the book, unsurprising once you’ve actually read it.
If you’re any sort of story lover The Phantom of the Opera is one you just cannot afford to miss! I’d rate it much higher than a 5/5!!