Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sunday Salon: Review: Eyes Like Stars

Eyes Like Stars coverTitle: Eyes Like Stars
Author: Lisa Mantchev
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Fantasy
Pub Date: July 2009, Feiwel & Friends
Hardcover, 352 pages


All her world’s a stage.

Bertie Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater.

She’s not an orphan, but she has no parents.

She knows every part, but she has no lines of her own.

That is, until now.

Enter Stage Right

NATE. Dashing pirate. Will do anything to protect Bertie.

COBWEB, MOTH, MUSTARD SEED, and PEASEBLOSSOM. Four tiny and incredibly annoying fairies. BERTIE’S sidekicks.

ARIEL. Seductive air spirit and Bertie’s weakness. The symbol of impending doom.

BERTIE. Our heroine.

Welcome to the Théâtre Illuminata, where the actors of every play ever written can be found behind the curtain. They were born to play their parts, and are bound to the Théâtre by The Book—an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of them, but they are her family—and she is about to lose them all and the only home she has ever known.

My Thoughts

Like many of you, I have read many raving reviews for Eyes Like Stars, and all I can say is that they are all absolutely true. I could probably go fangirl on you all in this review, but I will strive to maintain control over myself as I type. I loved this book; adored it, even. It is easily one of my top books, and perhaps even my TOP book for 2009, so far.

To me, Eyes Like Stars is so good because it is so unlike other books that are out there right now. It's a young adult fantasy without the typical paranormal element that is saturating the markets, except, of course, that is has every character from every play ever written. The premise and plot are so fresh and original that I found myself hooked from page one, despite the fact that I really don't have any theater background or knowledge. Thankfully, that's not at all necessary to enjoy the story Mantchev has written. If you don't love the characters, I would truly be surprised. Bertie (and all of her chaotic missteps) is just so wholly likable and her fairy sidekicks are an absolute riot. I found myself laughing at their antics and dialogues often. Not to mention, Mantchev has given a humanity to so many of the Shakespearean (and other) characters that you can almost find yourself believing they were real people. Naturally, Bertie has fallen for one of the characters: Nate, a pirate from The Little Mermaid.

Honestly, every time I sat down to read this book I think I had a smile on my face. It is simply a fun read that will call to you if you have to put it down. Will Bertie be able to overcome her tendency towards causing chaos and make a valuable contribution to the theater that will save her from being thrown out on the street? What will happen when yet another disaster occurs while she is trying to save her home and the only life she's known? Eyes Like Stars is the first in a series, and while it will certainly leave you wanting more, Mantchev gives you just enough to leave you satisfied by the end of the book. Yes, I am dying to know the fate of one of the characters (no spoilers, I promise) but at the same time I am completely satisfied knowing as much as I do so far. That being said, when's the next book coming out???

My rating: 5 stars

Other reviews of Eyes Like Stars:


  1. great review! I wasn't sure about this book because of the theater background, but I see now, that it doesn't matter!! I will be running out to get this book today I am sure!! Thanks for the review :)

  2. Fabulous review - you have me reaching for my credit card to buy it. I wanted to read this, now I am desperate to read it.

  3. Ooooh... I think I may have to add this one to my wishlist as well. You do realize that you're the cause of most of my books on my Amazon wishlist, right?

  4. Amber[ella] ~ I was definitely a little worried about it too, and in the end I definitely think that's part of what made the story.

    Scrap Girl & Keri ~ I hope that it's worth it in the end. Now I feel so much more pressure, haha :-) But if you decide to try it, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!!

  5. I really really want to read this! You are just one more reason to interest me!

  6. This book really sounds fantastic. I have to find a copy for me!

  7. Great review, I've heard heaps of good things about this one, glad to see you agreed!


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