“Roseblood”: Phantom’s Teen Tale

By Andrea Gribble ’18

The myth. The legend. The Opera Ghost. Whatever you want to call him, he lives.

There is no doubt that “The Phantom of the Opera” written by Gaston Leroux has left a forever mark on literature even after 100 years. “The Phantom of the Opera” tells the story of a musical-mastermind living in an Opera house who falls in love with a beautiful singer. Leroux’s work adapted into film and theater created award-winning productions fans adore. This classic has recently been rewritten in A. G. Howard’s 2017 release “Roseblood.”

“Roseblood” takes the timeless tale of “The Phantom of the Opera” and places it in a present time. In the book, a girl named Rune is affected by an internal power that cripples her when she sings opera. She needs the help of a boy named Thorn, who dresses like the phantom and can help Rune harness the power that has plagued her for years. However, there seems to be an interior motive that Rune doesn’t see.

After reading the original “The Phantom of the Opera” by Gaston Leroux, I can say it took me longer to finish than it should have. Teenagers shouldn’t avoid reading the original novel. However, the new take by A.G. Howard is refreshing and explicitly made for teens. Any teenager who wants to know the classic tale can read Howard’s version. It does seem helpful to at least know the story of “The Phantom of the Opera,” but it isn’t needed. Everything you need to know about the original story is shared in Howard’s version when needed.

I would rate this story 5/5. Howard waits to tell valuable information to readers until the end which creates suspense. Everything a reader wants to know is answered in a reasonable amount of time. At times, I wished more was explained at certain moments, but it was better that Howard withheld the information until she thought that her readers needed it. This makes her a better writer.

As far as young adult novels are concerned, this is high on my list of favorites. It’s highly suggested to all students “who hate to read.” As I always say, there is a book for everyone; you just need to find it.