Thursday, May 6, 2010

Review : Perchance to Dream (Théâtre Illuminata, #2)

Synopsis: Act Two, Scene One

Growing up in the enchanted Thèâtre Illuminata, Beatrice Shakespeare Smith learned everything about every play ever written. She knew the Players and their parts, but she didn’t know that she, too, had magic. Now, she is the Mistress of Revels, the Teller of Tales, and determined to follow her stars. She is ready for the outside world.


But the outside world soon proves more topsy-turvy than any stage production. Bertie can make things happen by writing them, but outside the protective walls of the Thèâtre, nothing goes as planned. And her magic cannot help her make a decision between—

Nate: Her suave and swashbuckling pirate, now in mortal peril.

Ariel: A brooding, yet seductive, air spirit whose true motives remain unclear.

When Nate is kidnapped and taken prisoner by the Sea Goddess, only Bertie can free him. She and her fairy sidekicks embark on a journey aboard the Thèâtre’s caravan, using Bertie’s word magic to guide them. Along the way, they collect a sneak-thief, who has in his possession something most valuable, and meet The Mysterious Stranger, Bertie’s father—and the creator of the scrimshaw medallion. Bertie’s dreams are haunted by Nate, whose love for Bertie is keeping him alive, but in the daytime, it’s Ariel who is tantalizingly close, and the one she is falling for. Who does Bertie love the most? And will her magic be powerful enough to save her once she enters the Sea Goddess’s lair?

Thoughts: What can I say about Perchance to Dream? From the time the curtain opens to the time it sets, Perchance to Dream takes you on this adventure you don't want to miss. If you liked Eyes Like Stars, you'll love Perchance to Dream.

So, I've been killing myself for days trying to figure out how to write a non-spoilery review. All I want to do is fan girl on and on about how much I enjoyed Perchance to Dream. The way Lisa writes makes you feel like your sitting in an audience, watching the best play of your life. You'll feel emotional attachments to characters, fall in love and laugh your butt off all in one reading.

First off, you have all the characters in Eyes Like Stars, tossed in with a few new ones. While the story revolves around Bertie, I find myself more attached to the secondary characters rather than the heroine. Don't get me wrong, Bertie's great. She's a strong woman (stronger than she probably knows) who continues to grow throughout the course of the book. But my personal favorites? Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Moth, and Mustardseed (aka the fairies from A Midsummer Night's Dream). They're HILARIOUS! Needless to say, they definitely keep the story interesting. Never a dull moment when those fairies take the stage.

Now, the epic question : Team Ariel or Team Nate. Any book wouldn't be the same without the epic love triangle. Personally, I'm Team Ariel. Who doesn't love the guy who's a jerk to everyone except Bertie, aka his lady love? I certainly do. Talk about making a girl feel special! Perchance to Dream does not disappoint when it comes to the Ariel department. Many times did a "squee" or two...or three leave my very happy heart. And don't worry Nate fans. Though he's taken prisoner for a good chunk of the book, you'll still get enough Nate to satisfy your needs.

Perchance to Dream is it's very unpredictable. Just when you think you've got it all figured out, Lisa throws in a surprise or two that'll make your head spin. And the ending? ACK! Do we really have to wait a year for book 3? Torture!

So in the end, did I enjoy Perchance to Dream? Oh yeah. I loved it more than Eyes Like Stars. I rarely ever like a sequel more than the first book, but in this case it's no contest! Lisa's writing is just so different than other authors. It's the beautiful, refreshing and interesting kind of different. Will all people enjoy it? Probably not. Much like writings in verse, it's an acquired taste. To everyone who has yet to read Eyes Like Stars, check it out. And for those who have, GRAB your copy of Perchance to Dream the instant it hits shelves in June!

*Special thanks to Lisa Mantchev and Feiwel and Friends for sending me an arc of Perchance to Dream. Be sure to check out Lisa's blog here where you can keep up with all things Théâtre Illuminata.


  1. Ah! I had quit Eyes Like Stars early on, but if my Lena loves the books so, I think I shall have to give them another try.

  2. Lena, You killed me with this review. Almost literally. Reminding me it's coming out in June, ouch...that hurt. I was trying to forget. Great review! I'm with you on Team Ariel!

  3. @Tiger- I know the writing is different, but once you get used to it, there's a great story in there!

    @Alia- I'd loan you my arc if I could. You'll love it. TEAM ARIEL, FTW!


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