This is my third and what I hope to be my final time reading this monstrosity of a novel. I read it once when it first came out and swore I would never read it or another work by Frederick Forsyth ever again. Well I haven't read anything else by Forsyth. My second time reading this novel came with my masters thesis based on Phantom of the Opera, of course, and now this time to take notes and re read for this blog - needless to say you obviously know this book is landing a bad review. This book is 177 pages of poorly written horse poo, 177 pages is nothing for me to read but it is when the book is torturing me.
First let's start with the preface. Forsyth gives ALW a world of praise, and proceeds to try to discredit Leroux. How do you discredit the author of an original work? A work that is clearly fiction, a work that Leroux knows is fiction, how do you argue that the work should then be factual and that Leroux was wrong in order to set up for your piece of crap sequel. The awful sequel that inspired LND.
Now let's get on to the ridiculous book itself. Forsyth has no creativity whatsoever, even though he might think he's clever. He tells a jumpy story from the point of view of characters like Taffy Jones and Cholly Bloom *snicker* The story brings Erik to Coney Island, leading a multi million dollar corporation. Erik rejected from attending opera at the MET, pairs up with Oscar Hammerstein (not the same one who has worked with Rodgers on Broadway shows, but an earlier relative) to create another Opera House. Erik intends to bring Dame Nellie Melba to debut for his opera but upon learning from Madame Giry (before she died) that he has a son with Christine, he sends for Christine to come to New York and debut in the first opera. This sets off a series of events and by the end Christine ends up dead like she does in LND, except her death scene is merely a few sentences versus a whole song in which she takes forever to die.
Honestly if you don't have too for a blog, school report, out of curiosity or for any other reason I wouldn't bother with this book. Don't waste your money, don't waste your time. I have a copy but it was given to me, after reading it the first time through a library copy I checked out, I knew I wouldn't spend a dime on this piece of trash. Unfortunately a well meaning non phan gave it to me, thinking I like all things phantom. Check out the book from a library if you must read it, you can borrow my copy and never give it back if you wish, I have posted information if you wish to buy it through amazon despite my searing review but I wouldn't spend a penny.