Pantomime By Laura Lam A Review

Pantomime by Laura Lam


Pantomime by Laura Lam

Title: Pantomime

Author: Laura Lam

Publication Date: February 5, 2013

Publisher: Strange Chemistry

Source: Netgalley

Challenge: 2013 Debut Author Challenge



R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. Nestled among the glowing blue Penglass—remnants of a mysterious civilization long gone—are wonders beyond the wildest imagination. It’s a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It’s a place where anyone can hide.

Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist’s apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.

But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada.


Caution, the review below does contain spoilers.

Pantomime by Laura Lam tells the story of Gene, a noble who is born as a hermaphrodite and her life is spent being told how to behave and shuttled to countless doctors and specialists. The chapters alternate between Gene, in the past, and Micah, in the future, and tell the story of how Micah ends up a circus performer in R.H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic. The alternating stories gives the reader a feel for the dichotomy that is living without a clear identity. Gene is suffocating living as a girl and when she learns of her parents forced medical intervention, she knows she can no longer live this life.

Pantomime by Laura Lam captures the magic of the circus through Micah as someone who watches and later becomes a performer. There is a magic that starts to shatter the longer Micah stays. The impressive ringmaster is nothing more than a drunk and the magic is old technology that is all an illusion. At times, there are glimpses of real magic, such as a projection seemingly speaking to Micah, that no one else can hear, but we only really scratch the surface here. I wish there was more meat to the what is Micah/Gene and where he came from, than we get in Pantomime.

Pantomime by Laura Lam is very well-written and for anyone who is fan of the circus, they will be charmed by the descriptions here. The feel is fantastical and very light like the aerialist that Micah becomes. For me, it could be a bit slow at times but the ending certainly made up for that. Overall, Pantomime by Laura Lam is a lovely debut that I would recommend reading. It has a very different feel than many Young Adult books and leaves the reader with lots to think about.


What You Will Find

  • Magic and Beauty
  • Dealing with difficult issues
  • Strong lead
  • Tragedy
  • Finding yourself
      The cover image and summary are from



Debut Author Challenge 2013 Goal Post


I am so excited about my first official challenge as a brand new book blogger! The Debut Author Challenge is hosted by Tara from Hobbitsies. The goal is to read at least twelve (or more) 2013 author debuts over the course of the year. There are prizes, an ARC tour, and lots of fun in the goodreads group if you are interested in joining.

I am apt to jump into challenges head first but I want to be able to actually accomplish this one. So as a preliminary goal, I plan on at going for the minimum number of 12 books for this challenge. I reserve the right to up that number if I see fit (and I probably will because it is only November and I have a long list of these debuts I really want to read.)

2013 Debuts I Really Want To Read

Prophecy by Ellen OhNobody But Us by Kristin HalbrookOCD A Love Story by Corey Ann Haydu

Prophecy (The Dragon King Chronicles #1) by Ellen Oh

Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook

OCD A Love Story by Corey Ann Haydu


Uses For Boys by Erica Lorraine ScheidtThe S Word by Chelsea PitcherHow My Summer Went Up In Flames by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski

Uses For Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt

The S-Word by Chelsea Pitcher

How My Summer Went Up In Flames by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski


Jinx by Sage BlackwoodStarglass by Phoebe NorthBlaze by Laurie Boyle Crompton

The Summer I Became A Nerd by Leah Rae Miller

Jinx by Sage Blackwood

Starglass by Phoebe North

Blaze (Or Love In A Time Of Supervillains) by Laurie Boyle Crompton


Me, Him, Them, And It by Caela CarterAltered by Jennifer RushBeing Henry David by Cal Armistead

Me, Him, Them, And It by Caela Carter

Altered (Altered #1) by Jennifer Rush

Being Henry David by Cal Armistead


The Reece Malcolm List by Amy SpaldingCity Of A Thousand Dolls by Miriam ForsterTaken by Erin Bowman

The Reece Malcolm List by Amy Spalding

City Of A Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster

Taken (Taken #1) by Erin Bowman


The Madman's Daughter by Megan ShepherdThe Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LabanThe Archived by Victoria Schwab

The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd

The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LeBan

The Archived by Victoria Schwab


Infinite Sky by C.J. FloodPantomime by Laura LamThe Culling by Steven Dos Santos

Infinite Sky by C.J. Flood

Pantomime by Laura Lam

The Culling (The Torch Keeper #1) by Steven Dos Santos 


My Life After Now by Jessica VerdiNantucket Blue by Leila HowardThe End Games by T. Michael Martin

My Life After Now by Jessica Verdi

Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland

The End Games by T. Michael Martin

After You by Jessica Corra


Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke

Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea (Between #1) by April Genevieve Tucholke


Any of these make your list?

All cover images taken from goodreads.