REVIEW #96: Pantomime (Pantomime #1) by Laura Lam

Title: Pantomime
Series:  Pantomime #1
Author: Laura Lam
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Release Date: February 5th 2013
Pages: Paperback,392 pages
Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:
R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. Nestled among the glowing blue Penglass—remnants of a mysterious civilisation long gone—are wonders beyond the wildest imagination. It’s a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It’s a place where anyone can hide.

Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist’s apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.

But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada.

I struggled with Pantomime from the first chapter. The narration/POV switches without any indication. I thought I was reading a story about Gene but the beginning was about the runaway, Micah. Not only does the POV switch randomly, some parts of the story are flashbacks making it a bit of a mess.

Once I was able to get used to the narration, I was ready to dive right into the magical world of the circus and the mystery of the magic that was long lost. But unfortunately that never happened. The story just dragged on. I held hope and finished it to the end. The last 50 pages were not bad, the action picked up, there was murder, lies, romance all crashing together but it just wasn't enough to save the story.

The magical aspects of the story seemed forced and lacked development and explanation. I wanted to know more about the magic held within the town, the glowing Penglass, and the Chimaera. The romance while less forced was quite complicated and not necessarily bad but it was not something I am very used to reading. Gene was a strong and resilient character that never gave up. The secondary characters were also well developed, bizarre in their own way and suited circus life perfectly.

Pantomime was sadly almost a DNF for me but I would have to give it 1.5 stars. Others may be more interested in reading this book but I do recommend checking out the spoilers below if you are torn about reading. (Just so you have a heads up about what you are reading.) The lengthy descriptions and drawn out scenes slowed down the already messy plot. The romance was a bit strange and the magic was underdeveloped. The circus setting and characters were one of a kind and earned the story one star.


I should have known I was getting myself into an interesting story when I picked up a story about the circus and Chimaera. Pantomime was nothing what I was expecting but again I did not really know what to expect. In full disclosure, the balancing act between Gene and Micah is a unique one. Gene and Micah are the same person. Iphigenia Laurus was born with both parts and has attraction for both guys and girls. 

Leah over at Uncorked Thoughts really enjoyed the story, so for a 4 star review check out Pantomime @Uncorked Thoughts



  1. I tend to like multiple POV's, but it's strange when you are lost between the characters. It also means that they don't have distinct voices? I hate it when the ending delivers all the interesting parts of the story. It's just not enough to make it a good book. I managed to stay way from the spoiler part, because I'm not entirely sure about this one. I might pick it up if I see a copy in the library :) Thanks for the honesty!


  2. I don't know what to think about the different points of view? I tend to like them, but I like them to be clear most of the time. I'm still kinda interested in this one for some reason though. I think this one might be a library or a barrow from a pal one though. Don't think I wanna spend all my monies on it...

  3. I have definitely been seeing mixed reviews for this book, so you don't have to feel bad! I'm really wary about picking this up because the narration doesn't sound too great. Everything just seems a bit like a jumbled mess in this book, eh? Perhaps I'll pick it up when I absolutely have nothing else to read. Thanks for your honest thoughts & opinions! Great review. :)

  4. Oh boy! I was really looking forward to reading this one, but your review has me a bit nervous to pick it up now. It sounds like it's got such great potential, so I might still be enticed to read it -- but it won't be as much of a priority as it was before.


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