Book Reviews of The Phantom of the Opera

The Phantom of the Opera
The Phantom of the Opera
Author: Gaston Leroux
ISBN-13: 9780440227748
ISBN-10: 0440227747
Publication Date: 9/8/1998
Pages: 336
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating:
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 11

4.1 stars, based on 11 ratings
Publisher: Laurel Leaf
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

26 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 328 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This is the original novel. (Befor the Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical) This love story is a gothic tale of obsession,---leading to madness. the author's descriptions of the Paris Opera House are creepy and at the end, you can't help but wonder if this is a true story!
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 2292 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I love the musical but had never read this book before. So I downloaded it to my Kindle for free. The formatting was okay on the Kindle version but all of the color plates were missing with an insert stating (color plate here). Overall the story itself was wonderful and really added to my understanding of the musical.

I think just about everyone should be familiar with this story. It is the story of an Opera Ghost who is mentoring Christine Daae to become a great opera singer. Of course when the Opera Ghost's wishes are not met by the new managers who run the opera house a series of disasters befall the opera company. Christine becomes increasingly entangled with the Opera Ghost and her childhood sweetheart, Raoul, tries his best to save her.

The book starts out a bit slow. It is told from the point of view of an investigator who is trying to piece together the whole story behind the Phantom of the Opera. Things really pick up as the Opera Ghost starts to torment people and Christine and Raoul start their false engagement.

My favorite part was the last third of the book when Raoul and the Persian are trying to navigate the area beneath the theater.

This book fills out some major parts of the story that you don't get in the musical. There is a lot more background on Raoul and Christine's childhood. More time is spent explaining the past of the Opera Ghost, Eric, and what made him the way he is. At the very end the investigator details how all of the ghostly things that happened in the story were done. Also the scenes under the opera house are much more vicious, involving a incredibly unique torture chamber, threats to flatten a few blocks of Paris, and more.

I was surprised at how engaging the writing style was. This was not a tough book to read at all, it was incredibly engaging and easy to read. There is a sly sense of humor in parts of the book and I found myself laughing out loud a couple times. I really enjoyed it.

My only complaint (and my husband's complaint) is that I kept humming parts of the musical as I read the book! If you are a fan of The Phantom and the Opera musical definitely check out this book; it makes parts of the musical make a lot more sense. It is much more interesting and creative and engaging than the musical too! The first third of the book is kind of slow but if you can make it though that, the rest of the book is definitely worth it!
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Completely different from what you expect from the movies and plays, but really good story.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 18 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I think pretty much everyone knows this story. I'll just say that if all you know of it is from either seeing the show on Broadway or from watching the movie, there is a LOT more to it. Great book, but you're in for a surprise if not prepared for lots of changes.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on
Helpful Score: 1
I was pretty disappointed in this book. I was given information from the "swapper" that this was a book written from another character's point of view within the play. It actually is a fact finding book more than anything... If you are wanting to dive head first into the entire history of the Phantom, this book is for you definitely and I would give it two thumbs up. However if like myself, you want it simply for entertainment purposes, please pass on this novel due to you probably will wish you wouldn't have spent your credits such as I have done and so wasted.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Loved it!!
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on
Helpful Score: 1
Webber took the premise of Phantom and made a beautiful musical but there is much more to the story and it's quite different. If you love the musical, the book is a must read.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 43 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
So awsome!!! :)
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 29 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Barnes & Noble black-background, gold-lettered hardcover edition. Very classy dustjacket with a small picture of a gargoyle on front, with gold bordering. Beautiful on the bookshelf! Excellent book, well-written, mysterious, definitely deserves to be a classic.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 81 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I loved this book it was so much better than the movie.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on
Helpful Score: 1
One of the best books I've evr read! It was romantic, suspenseful and well written. The things that Erik did were so magnificent that it's sad that if he looked like a normal human being he would have been a modern genius. I only wish I could of heard Erik's masterpeice before it was destroyed.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 19 more book reviews
The original novel that inspired the Broadway musical.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 33 more book reviews
This book was really exciting. For some reason, I always imagined that it would be thick and difficult, but after getting a song from one the movie stuck in my head, I decided to have a go at reading the book.

The read wasn't very difficult, and the story was very well told. It was easy to emphasize with the characters. I actually found myself feeling scared during some parts as well. The imagery was wonderful, and even though I was familiar with the story, I still found myself surprised.

I loved seeing the story from the point of view of a historian looking back and piecing together what really happened. It was also interesting that the focus was on Raoul, and his thoughts, feelings & reactions, and not on Christine. That added to the suspense, something would happen to Christine and the reader wouldn't find out until she went and told Raoul, which would sometimes be several chapters later.

Also, the introduction from Gaston Leroux was a great touch. I know some editions of this book have different intros, but try to get the one with Gaston. I loved feeling like it was all real (as he stated), and it was great to be left wondering if it all did happen, or if this was Leroux's Fargo-esque joke to the world. I've gone on discussion boards and people still debate whether or not it was all real or a big joke.

This is a really great book, and worth a read. Definitely a unique story.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 158 more book reviews
Filled with the color and theatrical spectacle of the Paris Opera House in the nineteenth century, and the ageless fascination of love transformed into murderous obsession, this classic work of mystery and suspense remains a riveting journey into the dark regions of the human heart. The tale begins as an investigation into the strange stories of an "opera ghost," legendary for making the performers at this great Paris art emporium apprehensive when they sit alone in their dressing rooms or walk alone in the building's labyrinthine corridors. Some even think they've seen the ghost in evening clothes moving in the shadows. But it isn't until the triumphant performance of sensual Christine Daae -- and her startling disappearance -- that a sense of dread begins to pervade the dim backstage areas and subterranean passages of the glorious opera house. In an ever-increasing pattern of fear and violence, the Phantom of the Opera begins to strike, but always with the beautiful young singer at the center of his macabre desires. A story that has captured the imagination of audiences in adaptations throughout the century, Phantom continues to thrill audiences to this date as an unparalleled work of sheer entertainment.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 7 more book reviews
I'm not sure why Wolf thought this deserved a new title.

This is basically just a very nice edition of the original novel with an introduction and copious footnotes on historical background of the building, events, persons, plays/songs/etc. mentioned and literary allusions.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 27 more book reviews
I am huge fan of the musical, which is the reason I read this book. It really made me appreciate the show even more, because it let me see how well the story translated into a a musical production, and gave me insight as to how and why the composer and directors chose which parts of the story to tell in song form, which parts to change, and how to represent the characters. For instance, one of my favorite scenes in the musical is the first appearance of the phantom behind Christine's mirror, when he seduces her into following him. Reading this scene in the book, I very much enjoyed Leroux's descriptions of the phantom's overpowering and astoundingly beautiful voice, which compels Christine to obey him. It really makes you appreciate how the actors have to transmit this idea of a voice so mysterious and alluring to the audience.

Even if you aren't reading it for a better appreciation of the musical, it's still a great story. I found the descriptions of the backstage of the opera house very interesting, and the characters are well-developed. It's even better if you're willing to put effort into analyzing it; if you read into it enough, you really do get a glimpse of the dark recesses of Erik's obsessions.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 6 more book reviews
This book was much better than the musical. The plot is different than both the musical and the movie, but it was very enjoyable and an easy read.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 9 more book reviews
Very Very good. I read this in 8th grade, and I still remember it being a good book.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 32 more book reviews
I really liked how the story was written - as Mr. Leroux reporting the facts with interviews with the people who actually lived the events. I thought the tale of the Opera Ghost was most interesting and I'm still deciding whether I am terrified or pity the ghost.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on
Translated from the French version, the author tells how he became convinced that the opera ghost really existed.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 40 more book reviews
<3

I love this book... need I say more?
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 27 more book reviews
I am huge fan of the musical, which is the reason I read this book. It really made me appreciate the show even more, because it let me see how well the story translated into a a musical production, and gave me insight as to how and why the composer and directors chose which parts of the story to tell in song form, which parts to change, and how to represent the characters. For instance, one of my favorite scenes in the musical is the first appearance of the phantom behind Christine's mirror, when he seduces her into following him. Reading this scene in the book, I very much enjoyed Leroux's descriptions of the phantom's overpowering and astoundingly beautiful voice, which compels Christine to obey him. It really makes you appreciate how the actors have to transmit this idea of a voice so mysterious and alluring to the audience.

Even if you aren't reading it for a better appreciation of the musical, it's still a great story. I found the descriptions of the backstage of the opera house very interesting, and the characters are well-developed. It's even better if you're willing to put effort into analyzing it; if you read into it enough, you really do get a glimpse of the dark recesses of Erik's obsessions.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 68 more book reviews
A must-read.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 19 more book reviews
The Phantom of the Opera is a great classic! Both mysterious and endearing, it's a great read.
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 72 more book reviews
One of the worst books I have ever read. Hated it...
reviewed The Phantom of the Opera on + 29 more book reviews
This was a great book! I really enjoyed it! I had a few questions from the musical/movie, so I read the book and they were answered!
I can definaely relate to the humming the tunes from the movie. I watched the movie a couple of weeks ago and I still have the songs stuck in my head.....