Olive Preiss finds sanctuary on the stage but soon finds there is often more than meets the eye in the theater.
Like many young women, white, brown-haired Olive dreams of success on the stage. There is only one problem: whenever her mother is in the room she chokes. After a particularly awful audition, Olive runs off through the city. As rain clouds roll in, she seeks refuge in the Maudeville, an old but elegant and well-preserved theater. The lovely stage compels her to break out in song. Unbeknownst to Olive, the mysterious proprietor of the establishment is listening in and immediately offers Olive a starring role in her upcoming vaudeville review. Olive almost immediately feels deep affinity with the diverse cast and even the friendly ghosts that call the Maudeville home. The theater becomes her escape from her stressful home life. Yet when young, Latino vagabond Felix warns her not to return, she begins to see that there may be more to her beloved theater than meets the eye. This dark, grief-filled tale is reminiscent of Stephen King’s It with a dash of Cirque du Soleil and is likely to appeal to readers who resonate with Olive’s feelings of escape and refuge found on stage.
Whether readers are enraptured as Olive or dubious as Felix, the Maudeville’s mysteries will captivate them until the end. (Fantasy. 8-12)