|Author: Julia Golding|
Book Review By: Noureen K. Ajmal
The Diamond of Drury Lane
Once upon a time (this isn’t a summary, just keep reading) I bought a stack of new books. Ever since then, whenever I got tired of rereading rereads, I would open the cupboard where I kept them and search for one with an interesting cover. Through this method I have found certain favorites such as the Septimus Heap series and the Inkheart Trilogy.
A few weeks back I reached inside the cupboard to find a ‘new favorite’ and found a book with a bright orange cover, boasting of interesting tales. The moment I began reading The Diamond of Drury Lane, I knew that I had chosen the right book.
This story is about an orphaned theatre maid called Catherine Royal (Cat), who has to fight off a gang to get the Diamond, which is hidden in the theatre, to safety.
The Diamond of Drury Lane focused on the setting. As I read the book I would get sucked into the streets of London where Cat lives. Once, while I was on vacation in a forested area, I kept the book down because it felt so different from what was going on around me.
Even if I don’t think that the story focuses on characters as much as it does in the setting, I still marveled in the unique characters. For example, Pedro, a slave who escaped to become a violinist. Normally his character would have been the victim in the sob story, but he is greedy for money (and rightly so), doing anything for riches. Or Cat herself, who is confident in the theatre, but not in the fancy houses of her friends. She manages to be both rebellious and docile in different situations.
Who was my favorite character? The one that wasn’t as unique as the others surprisingly. Lord Francis, who wants to be like all the other town boys and have some fun. His character was written well, despite being a cliché.
Lady Elizabeth (Francis’s sister) was also enjoyable to read about despite being another cliché of the perfect rich lady who sympathizes with the poor.
I didn’t want to put this book down, so when I finished the story, I went onward and read the little bits of information at the end, which includes several maps, a glossary, and even a set of questions about the story. (I really like the writing style when I read a set of questions).
Would I recommend this book? Yes. Especially to a new reader who is wary of taking up a series. The chapters are short, and the story is simple. I hope I will remember this book since stand-alones sometimes get lost under series. This is something I never want to forget.
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