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OBS BOOK REVIEWS: EYES LIKE STARS BY LISA MANTCHEV

by Dawn, November 17, 2010

Eyes Like Stars by Lisa Mantchev

Brought to you by OBS staff member Annabell Cadiz

Synopsis: All her world’s a stage.

Enter Stage Right
Beatrice Shakespeare Smith (Bertie): Our heroine.

Nate: A dashing pirate who will do anything to protect Bertie.

Cobweb, Moth, Mustardseed, and Peaseblossom: Four tiny, mischievous fairies, and Bertie’s loyal sidekicks.

Ariel: A seductive air spirit. Disaster follows in his wake, but Bertie simply cannot resist him.

Welcome to the Theatre Illuminata, where the characters of every play ever written can be found behind the curtain. The actors are bound to the Theatre by The Book, an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of the actors, but they are her family. And she is about to lose them all because The Book has been threatened, and along with it the Theatre. It’s the only home Bertie has ever known, and she has to find a way to save it. But first, there’s the small problem of two handsome men, both vying for her attention. The course of true love never did run smooth . . .”

I originally was simply interested in reading Eyes Like Stars. I had a feeling the book was going to be geared more toward children’s writing than young adult. But come to find out, Eyes Like Stars is geared for any age! I FELL IN LOVE with this book! Author Lisa Mantchev is a wonderful writer!

The setting is ridden with havoc and beauty and magic. The descriptions never feel dragged out or overdone. You can picture every character and every scene without a problem. I never felt like the setting was lacking or missing. Eyes Like Stars was very well written. Lisa Mantchev is in complete control of her story and characters. She brings them to life in a laid back and casual manner. There isn’t a moment you feel as if she’s trying to force a character onto you or an idea. The entire book flows perfectly. You will be delighted with silly jokes and learn of Shakespearean references and travel through a tasty love triangle!

I usually get annoyed with love triangles. So many have been done throughout books, makes you wish for a newer version of a love triangle and Lisa Mantchev delivers just that in Eyes Like Stars. Bertie has two love interest: Nate, a pirate from The Little Mermaid who only ever has one line, and Ariel, the air spirit from The Tempest.  Nate is the brawn: strong, trustworthy, dependable. Ariel is the brains: cunning, charming, and clever. Like Berite, I would find it extremely difficult to choose between either one! Nate cracks me up and Ariel makes me want to kiss him and punch him in the face. They are both so scrumptious and irresistible!

For those of you who have never read Shakespeare or have long forgotten, no need to rush out to buy a study guide. Lisa Mantchev throws you right into the Shakespearean world and guides you through it via the characters. I found a deeper appreciation for Shakespeare through reading Eyes Like Stars, something I definitely didn’t think would happen.

Eyes Like Stars is a beautiful example of how great young adult fiction can be when the right author comes along. You will find yourself laughing as Bertie’s tiny fairies friends play out their pranks, yelling at Nate and Ariel as they each try to win Bertie, and feel as if you have grown smarter from all the Shakespeare lessons (lol). Eyes Like Stars is an easy read and will have you running to the store to buy the sequel (Perchance to Dream–which wonderfully enough is out in stores now!)

Go buy Eyes Like Stars! Trust me when I say you will FALL IN LOVE with Bertie and her world!

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