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A Reader of Fictions: Piano Black - The Seatbelts

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Piano Black - The Seatbelts

Magic Under Glass
Magic Under Glass, Book 1

Author: Jaclyn Dolamore
Pages: 225
Publisher: Bloomsbury

Brief Summary:
Nimira works in a music hall as a trouser girl, scraping together just enough pennies to stay alive. So much for earning a fortune like she planned when she left her home country of Tiansher for Lorinar. Her luck seems like it might finally be changing when sorcerer Hollin Parry offers her a job after having seen one of her performances. He wants her to sing to accompany a piano-playing automaton he acquired. Thrilled at first, both at the prospect of a better life and at Parry's attentions to her, she begins to realize that there are a lot of dark secrets in Parry's House. The automaton which was rumored to be haunted turns out to be a fairy trapped inside a clockwork body; she must find a way to set him free, hopefully while finding a purpose for herself.

The opening chapters did not interest me immediately, and I feared that I would not care much for this book or the sequel. Then Nimira went to Parry's house and suddenly, without noticing the change, I realized that I was reading voraciously, completely wrapped up in the story Dolamore created. From that point, she didn't let me go.

Nimira is not the typical strong heroine, nor is she a shrinking violet. She lacks in physical strength and she cries several times. Still, she is a powerful girl to be reckoned with. When the chips are down, she does not let fear stop her. She fights for those she loves and for herself.

Okay, who would have thought that an author could make this work so well? I mean, Erris can't say anything but "Mmm," and can communicate solely by piano. His movements are similarly limited. Yet, Dolamore manages to make him come across as a real, dynamic character with a personality, rather than a static one. Wow. Just wow.

The inside flap compares Magic Under Glass to Libba Bray and Charlotte Bronte. My initial reaction to this was skepticism. I definitely didn't see the Bronte at all. When I found it, my like for the book became even stronger. This was pretty much the deciding factor for loving this book over merely liking it.

This book has everything. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoyed Cinder or A Long, Long Sleep, other recent favorites. I am so incredibly excited to read Magic Under Stone.

Rating: 4.5/5

Note: I love this song for this book, because I like to imagine that this is what the automaton's piano sounds like, very different from the fairy music. :-p

Note 2: I prefer this cover, because it's the same girl who's on the cover for book two, who looks way more like Nimira than the girl on the cover of the edition I read.

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Blogger Sarah Elizabeth said...

I hadn't heard of this book before today but it sounds like it really captured you! I love books that have magic and faeries, and I can't quite believe that a character in a book can't say more than 'umm', but I guess it's the prose not the conversation that carries a story along. Think I will check this one out!

May 9, 2012 at 10:49 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Yeah, poor guy, right? He's stuck in that clockwork body, so he can't move. He's lucky he can make any sound! But he still manages to have personality. That is some skill.

May 9, 2012 at 10:51 AM  
Anonymous Christina K. said...

Oh this one sounds awesome! I love the magician aspect and how it's part steampunk. I love how communication is so unique in this:)

May 9, 2012 at 12:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't heard much about Magic Under Glass, but I would love to read it!

May 10, 2012 at 6:14 PM  
Blogger Leah said...

This is the first time I've heard of this series but it sounds interesting! I like the whole "classic" feel of the setting. Reminded me a little about Phantom of the Opera, only with more magic and with a different story. OKay, so it's not really like Phantom at all. Haha. But it seriously reminded me of it. :)

I like the second cover better, too. Pretty!

May 17, 2012 at 5:36 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Hahaha, I love this comment. Yeah, I'm not seeing the Phantom connection, but I've not read Phantom, only seen the movie, so I won't say it's not there!

May 17, 2012 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Tanja - Tanychy said...

I haven't read this book...but it sounds interesting!
Great review!! :)

May 18, 2012 at 9:16 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I had never heard of this series before, it sounds really interesting! Thanks for reviewing it!

May 21, 2012 at 7:33 PM  
Blogger tjmetz said...

Thanks for the introduction to a new series, it sounds great!

May 22, 2012 at 8:53 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

I had not heard of this book before finding your site..sounds like i might need to check it out.

May 23, 2012 at 5:29 PM  
Blogger Sonia said...

I have recently purchased this book and am looking forward to reading this. I prefer the paperback cover with white blackground, a couple and a piano. Have you seen that? Great review! :-)

May 23, 2012 at 10:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This sounds amazing! Thank you so much for the great review. :)

May 24, 2012 at 6:54 AM  
Blogger Janita said...

I've never heard of this book before, but now I want to read it!

May 24, 2012 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

I have seen that one, and it's very cute for sure. I probably do like it best, but it doesn't match book two, at least not yet. If they released a matching one, I would like that best definitely!

May 24, 2012 at 10:59 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

All of you, the series is well worth checking out! Thanks for the compliments!

May 24, 2012 at 11:00 AM  

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