The book The Night Library at Sternendach is a vampire opera told in verse. The dark story puts a romantic twist on the classic vampire genre, each line mimicking an opera libretto. The cast of characters is listed along with the voice and description assigned to each part – I found myself wondering which actor would play each part.
The story reads as a mixture of Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera, revolving around the library at Castle Sternendach, the Graf’s home.
This grand opera has it all: Love, jealousy, urgency, loss. I heard the vocals and saw the choreography of the Graf, Grafin, Timoch, and Kunigunde. Oma terrified me, and Eva’s strength emboldened me.
The dance of words played in my mind’s eye with each new verse. All I needed was Andrew Lloyd Webber to write the music. I’ve already cast the show for him, if he’ll but ask..
The magic of this book is that each reader will have a different take, create a different cast as they read it. If you are concerned about reading in verse, allay your fears. The verse does not diminish understanding. The verse, beautiful and lilting, calls Kudos for Jessica Levai. She crafted rhymes for the entire book, yet avoided a “Dr. Suess does Vampire” feel.
The Graf worked his magic with the verse – I was mesmerized, even more than Kunigunde! I am a huge fan of the vampire genre. I love the mystery and intrigue surrounding the creatures of the night. I also love to read and write poetry. I won’t reveal the story with a hint of spoilers. All I’ll say is that I found the book hard to put down, so much so that I read the entire book in one sitting. Then, I read it again. The Graf and his Library had me singing the praises of this rendition of what brilliantly sidestepped the potential replay of many other vampiric tales.
To all those who love the vampire genre, this is a must read. For those who love an enchanting story, you will also enjoy this book. If Andrew Lloyd Webber is looking for another idea for a play, this Vampiric Opera would be a fantastic venture. The staging, the lights, the feeling will have the audience reeling. Save me a seat at the Night Library of Sternendach!
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Sue Cook lives in Freeport, Illinois with her husband Randy and two dogs. Her passions include assistance dogs, rescue dogs, music, acting, theater, poetry, and Doctor Who. She’s been in both film and theater and is a regular cast member of the podcast Doctor Who’s Line is it….Anyway? Sue is an advocate for the use of Service Dogs to assist their disabled handlers to maintain their independence. Quigley’s Quest, her first children’s book, addresses how a dog becomes a Service Dog.