Nocturne by Cheryl Mahoney

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What I Loved:

I love a retelling! I especially like one that comes from a story I love so much. I’ve seen Phantom of the Opera on multiple occasions, I’ve read the book multiple times, and now…my first retelling! Nocturne was a wonderful retelling that really pulled me into the story.

How I Felt:

Nocturne tells the Phantom of the Opera tale, but from the perspective of Meg Giry, a dancer and friend of Christine Daaé. I really enjoyed that this new character was added to the story. I liked her perspective and her investigative mind.

The story’s beginning had me completely pulled in. I love it when a book grabs you from the start, and this one did! Meg is lost in the depths of the Opera trying to get to dance class. I loved the way the author made me feel Meg’s emotions through this. I felt her fear and concern over being late to class, and then of being lost. Cheryl Mahoney’s writing grabbed me emotionally again and again throughout the story. She has a great way of making the reader feel what is happening!

The pace of the book was really good. There area few slow points, but overall, it was a story that flowed from one event to the next making me fly through the 357 pages.

The characters were true to the original story, yet had their own differences that made the book unique. Erik, the Phantom of the Opera, has such a love of his music. His character is mysterious and secretive, and yet there’s something that drew me to him. I really enjoyed Meg’s character. She is friends with Christine, but she really wants to be able to stand out on her own, not on the coattails of Christine’s success.

Overall, I really enjoyed this retelling! I liked the twists and turns that the story had, and the characters were wonderful!

To Read or Not To Read:

I would recommend Nocturne for readers that enjoy a story with mystery, romance, and wonderful characters! If you enjoy Phantom of the Opera, you’ll enjoy reading this version!

Where to Find This Book:

Nocturne by Cheryl Mahoney is available at these sites.

Goodreads | Amazon Kindle | Amazon


Set against the backdrop of 1880s Paris and the stunning Opera Garnier, The Guardian of the Opera: Nocturne brings you the familiar tale from a different direction. Meg Giry met the Phantom once when she was twelve years old, a new ballet dancer lost in the Opera’s maze. Years later, when an Angel of Music offers singing lessons to her best friend Christine Daaé, Meg is sure she knows what’s actually happening. But as strange events unfold and the pieces stop adding up, Meg has to wonder if she truly understands the Phantom—or Christine.

Erik is a man of many talents and many masks, and the one covering his face may be the least concealing. The opera house is his kingdom and his refuge, where he stalks through the shadows as the Phantom of the Opera, watching over all that occurs. He never intended to fall in love; when he does, it launches him into a new symphony he’s certain can only end in heartbreak.

Just the Facts:

Nocturne by Cheryl Mahoney
Series: The Guardian of the Opera, Book 1
Genre: YA / Retelling
Page Count: 357 pages
Publisher: Stonehenge Circle Press
Pub Date: June 5, 2020

Cheryl Mahoney lives in California and dreams of other worlds. She is the author of the Beyond the Tales quartet, retelling familiar fairy tales, but subverting expectations with different points of view and new twists to the tales. She is also a co-author of The Servants and the Beast, and its companion piece, After the Sparkles Settled. Cheryl loves exploring new worlds in the past, the future or fairyland, and builds her stories around characters finding their way through those worlds–especially characters overlooked or underestimated by the people around them.

She has been blogging since 2010 at Tales of the Marvelous ( Her weekly Writing Wednesday posts provide updates about her current writing, including excerpts. She also posts regularly with book and movie reviews, and reflections on reading. She has been a member of Stonehenge Writers since 2012, and has completed NaNoWriMo seven times.

Cheryl has looked for faeries in Kensington Gardens in London and for the Phantom at the Opera Garnier in Paris. She considers Tamora Pierce’s Song of the Lioness Quartet to be life-changing and Terry Pratchett books to be the best cure for gloomy days.


I was provided an advanced reader’s copy of this book for free. I am leaving my review voluntarily.

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