Stefanie Cole The Phantom Returns

ISBN 13: 9780979076848

The Phantom Returns

3.47 avg rating
( 55 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780979076848: The Phantom Returns

A swirl of a black cape, a single red rose, a glimpse of a face she thought never to see again the story begins like all stories of true love with passion, confusion, and fate playing a hand. Vicomtesse Christine de Chagny, once known as the beautiful ingénue Christine Daae of the Paris Opera House, has stepped into her husband s world of titled nobility. Newly-wed to Raoul de Chagny, the allure of a fresh beginning promises to dispel the young couple s disturbing memories of a cursed Opera House and the Phantom who haunted it. Yet, a past so unresolved cannot stay silent. The Phantom returns, no longer a broken ghost, but a riveting man. With his usual audacious style, he beguiles and beckons, daring Christine to complete her journey from naïve girl to courageous woman. How far will any man go to achieve his heart s desire?

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About the Author:

Author, Stefanie Cole exchanged one climate for another moving from the chilly north to sunnier south. Though she misses her fall weather and snow, Stefanie enjoys waking up all year round to walk and plot in the warm weather it exercises both her body and mind! The Phantom Returns is her first published novel, but not the last!

Review:

Given the fact that I'm enough of an obsessed Phantom "phreak" to read anything Phantom-related, I was pleasantly surprised when I stumbled upon the gem known as "The Phantom Returns". I'll admit, I was skeptical, thinking that this would be another half-hearted attempt to give a new dimension to some of my favorite characters.
Skepticism soon gave way to fascination within paragraphs of the opening line. Here's why:  My biggest beef with writers in this genre is they try to bring new life to characters that I love. In doing so, they slaughter integral parts of who the characters are. Not so with Stefanie Cole she does nothing to tamper with who Erik, Christine, and Raoul are. If anything, she intensifies and magnifies them, drawing upon foundations laid in the musical and movie adaptation.  
As for dialogue...more than once, I found myself looking over my shoulder to see if Erik had whispered his line into my ear. There's enough snappy wit to keep it interesting, and enough period syntax to keep it within the realm of historical fiction.  Cole's talent doesn't end with characterization and dialogue, however--it also extends into prose and imagery. The moments are few and far between when you don't know exactly the way the ballroom or dining hall looks, or have trouble picturing a full skirt sweeping along a hardwood floor.  That's not to say that this book is utterly flawless--but what masterpiece is? Of all the books I've read that have tried to give the Phantom of the Opera a more satisfactory conclusion, this one ranks among my favorites, and has definitely earned its place on my bookshelf. Unparalleled Delight! --Adriela in Nebraska

From first sentence to last, Stefanie Cole takes the reader on a spectacular journey through what might have happened at the end of the latest movie version of The Phantom of the Opera . She paints a vivid picture that draws the reader into the world of Christine, Raoul, and Erik (aka: the Phantom) after the infamous chandelier crash. From there, the lives of these beloved characters are followed as they learn and struggle to find peace and acceptance after their harrowing ordeal in the Phantom s lair. The ending is a masterfully orchestrated rollercoaster ride that surprises and leaves the reader breathless. In the realm of phan fiction, Stefanie Cole has no equal. Her writing style pulls you in and carries you along. This book would be a welcome addition to any phan's library. But, be careful you may find yourself unable to put it down. --Jen, New York

Rarely do I give five stars to anything. In this case, I had to make the exception. An excellent story by a writer who knows her craft is rare in the sequel world. This one does and does it beautifully. I m not usually much on sequels since most are written by phans who have no talent for writing nor do they understand the characters. They simply want to put on paper their own ending, turning the character of Christine into a Mary-Sue and leaving the other characters as cardboard cutouts, there to do the bidding of the MS Christine. Such is not the case with this novel. Based much on the most recent movie, the author has extended the story in a way that brings these characters to life. Each one stays true to the original at the beginning but their growth is both believable and palpable. Christine, though showing great promise at the end of the original, has no reason to continue that promise of growth and lapses back into her little girl world until Erik. Erik has fought his own demons with the help of an old man. A man who shares the same unfortunate disfigurement and has learned to accept and live with it; his encouragement propels Erik to take his friends advice and fight for the one thing he has ever loved. His Christine. The plot twists are generous but fitting and you ll find no plot holes in this story. Ms. Cole s prose flows well, her writing level is far beyond what one would normally expect in a sequel of this sort and because of that, her ability to draw one in and mesmerize, will keep book in hand from start to finish. I could not put it down. --Thea, Chicago

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