The Best Reader + theatre

Eyes Like Stars — Lisa Mantchev

I'm very happy to again welcome Cassandra, from the Happy Book Lovers Blog, as this week's Guest Reviewer.


Eyes Like Stars — Lisa Mantchev


"All her world’s a stage.

Bertie Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater. She’s not an orphan, but she has no parents. She knows every part, but she has no lines of her own. That is, until now.
Enter Stage Right."
All her world's a stage.

Seventeen-year-old Beatrice (Bertie) Shakespeare Smith has spent her whole life within the walls of the Theatre Illuminata, a majestic and magical playhouse with thousands of players at the ready. Bertie was a foundling, discovered at the theater door, but management has now wearied of harboring the irreverent, unrestrained, occasionally downright destructive young woman she has become. She must prove-in four days-that she can make an invaluable contribution to the theater or be forever banished.

Mantchev seamlessly blends the chaotic with the traditional plays of the theatre, like molding Hamlet into an Egyptian setting, and morphing Bertie from a child into a cannon-firing tango-dancing girl ready to ward off the Stage Manager. She also expertly created a world in which I would die to live in, with sets constantly changing on stage to fit moods and topics of characters and their conversations.

It also held my interest, changing topics quickly but fluidly, so as not to confuse one too badly. I was lost at first, as there was minimal explaining that the players couldn't actually leave the theater, but once I found that out, I couldn't put the book down.

I also fell in love with the vividly striking Ariel, who played the villain for a while, always trying to manipulate Bertie into falling madly in love with him. I sure was. I adored his personality, and I felt as though when he stared at Bertie, his eyes penetrated me. It was eerie.


Thank you so much Cassandra. You have been such an amazing resource to my mission for literacy.

Please make sure to visit Cassandra at Happy Book Lovers Blog.

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Eyes Like Stars — Lisa Mantchev + theatre