Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Road Less Traveled: "The Opera Ghost Unraveled" by Michelle Rodriguez

Exquisitely, sweepingly romantic and elegantly written, Ms. Rodriguiz's "Opera Ghost Unraveled" gives us an intimate look into Christine and Erik's growing attraction to one another. Sweet, innocent Christine, orphaned, and living in a small apartment, makes her way to the cemetery to visit her father's grave. She thanks him for sending her the Angel of Music who has helped her to become a brilliant singer. She confides that she has fallen in love with the angel and wants to be his, alone.
Back in her dressing room at the Opera House, she calls to her Angel who replies, he is always there. She begs to know more of his existence. He finally tells her his name is "Erik". And Erik it is, our Erik, hoping, daring to reach out to Christine and claim her but holding back, afraid to face the hurt and rejection he's always known.  He is hesitant, but is finally swayed by her entreaties and... one evening as she waits for him,  he presents himself  to her through the mirror, reaching out a gloved hand and drawing her into the darkness and into his world. A world that will force her to face her fears...and her innermost desires.
Ms. Rodriguiz's Erik is intensely alive, scarred both inside and out, driven to take a chance that maybe, just maybe, someone might see beyond the deformities and love the man behind the mask. Christine, too, comes to life on the page. She is enchanting, and though she is finding her way through the demands of falling in love with the Opera Ghost, she is up for the challenge.
Raoul, finding the girl he thought lost forever, and trying to win her back from Erik, is also believably real, as is the adorable, flighty Meg, trying to keep Christine's secrets but dying to share them with the corps of ballerinas.
Many authors have taken these characters and done wonderful things with the plots and storylines. Ms. Rodriguiz has done that, and much more, as she has given us an Erik and Christine who are human, complete with doubts and failings, fighting against society's conventions with love, loyalty and passion. Who could ask for more?


  1. Stephanie, this is what I love about Michelle's many versions of "The Phantom of the Opera." She makes the main characters more human, and does so, while retaining the mystery of the Opera Ghost and amping-up his intensity! I love your illustration! Diane

  2. Thanks so much, Diane. I really loved what Michelle did with the characters! She captured them in a new light!