Book Critique - Masquerade

For reviews of other books in this anthology: Go here

Stars: 3 / 5

Recommendation: For those quick reads you are looking for in paranormal romance genre without any sequels or series to go through, this is a perfect book.

Masquerade is a 1994 novella by Amanda Ashley published as part of the anthology After Twilight along with novellas from two other authors - Christine Feehan and Ronda Thompson. This is the first of Amanda's novels with a vampire theme. It was originally published in the anthology The Topaz Man Presents Secrets of the Heart and later for After Twilight.

In the book credits on the first page, Amanda Ashley is credited as Madeline Baker. In fact Amanda Ashley is Madeline Baker's alter ego. While she wrote historical romances under Madeline Baker, she wrote books with vampire / paranormal theme under Amanda Ashley name. Quite a contrast in genre that she has for each of her names. 

This first book, Masquerade, is a mere 112 page novella yet it did bring out her love for Vampires and the epic musical The Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The current plot revolves around a 300 year old Vampire, Jason Blackthorne and his love towards a mortal, Leanne, who played a chorus role in the theater presentation of the famous Phantom of the Opera. A love that would not give any solace to either one yet they don’t deter to act on it. However how will the same love change their loves is what the rest of the plot is about.

It is very clear that Amanda (I am going to call the author Amanda as opposed to Madeline since that is what she wrote this book under) has definite affinity for the musical that she reiterates time and again in different scenes between Jason and Leanne. And also for Vampires. We see periodically that Jason and Leanne enjoy watching the famous Hollywood movies on vampires -  the 1979 horror comedy film Love at First Bite, the 1979 British-American horror film Dracula and the 1931 American vampire-horror film Dracula.

A simple and sweet tale of love and sacrifice which I felt finished faster than it needed to be. I don’t believe she had written a sequel to this book, but she did continue writing more of vampire themed romance novels. 

An easy and quick read that will entertain you just enough to finish it.

Spoiler Alerts:

1) Grammatical / Geographical / Location / Character / Historical Errors:

a. On Pg. 68, line 13, there is no need for the "the" at the beginning of the line.

b. On Pg. 85, line 22, there is no need for the "the" at the beginning of the line.


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