Thanks to NetGalley and Inkyard Press for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: March 9th, 2021
Synopsis: Isda does not exist. At least not beyond the opulent walls of the opera house.
Cast into a well at birth for being one of the magical few who can manipulate memories when people sing, she was saved by Cyril, the opera house’s owner. Since that day, he has given her sanctuary from the murderous world outside. All he asks in return is that she use her power to keep ticket sales high—and that she stay out of sight. For if anyone discovered she survived, Isda and Cyril would lose their lives.
But Isda breaks Cyril’s cardinal rule when she meets Emeric Rodin, who throws her quiet, solitary life out of balance. His voice is unlike any she’s ever heard, but the real shock comes when she finds in his memories hints of a way to finally break free of her gilded prison.
Haunted by this possibility, Isda spends more and more time with Emeric, searching for answers in his music and his past. But the price of freedom is steeper than Isda could ever know. For even as she struggles with her growing feelings for Emeric, she learns that in order to take charge of her own destiny, she must become the monster the world tried to drown in the first place. (Goodreads)
I have been fascinated with The Phantom of the Opera since I read the original classic by Gaston Leroux as a child, so when I saw the lovely cover of Sing Me Forgotten and discovered that it was a gender-switched retelling, I knew I had to get my hands on it. As you can guess from my rating, I was not disappointed. The main reason why I didn’t give this 5 stars is because for the first few chapters, I was a little confused about the magical elements. It wasn’t long though before everything became clear, and once that happened I was completely enthralled by both the imaginative story and its characters. Isda is not what you’d call a likable character, yet I felt sympathetic toward her nonetheless. She has been shaped by how society has treated her, and almost every action she took, reflected this. Sweet, loyal Emeric was the perfect romantic partner for her, as he saw the good inside her that even she didn’t see. As their relationship developed I found myself rooting for them even as I suspected, given the tale this story is based on, that they were not meant to be. The villain at first seemed one-dimensional, but even he in the end had a slightly sympathetic side. The detailed world building truly was magnificent, mixing familiar settings of a grand opera house with sprawling catacombs underneath, with the addition of the magic and an interesting political system. The ending definitely isn’t your typically happily-ever-after, and although it seems like Sing Me Forgotten is to be a standalone, the last chapter certainly introduces the possibility of a sequel, which I for one would be thrilled to see. Overall, I highly recommend Sing Me Forgotten for teens and adults who are looking for a unique and beautifully told historical fantasy.