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The Angel of the Opera: Sherlock Holmes Meets the Phantom of the Opera [Hardcover]

Sam Siciliano
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall & IBD (31 May 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1883402468
  • ISBN-13: 978-1883402464
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 16 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 930,921 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


The legendary detective investigates the real secrets motivating the Phantom of the Opera, when the managers of the Paris Opera House seek help with their difficult tenant.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Angel of the Opera is excellent! 15 Oct 1998
By A Customer
Being both a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes AND The Phantom of the Opera, I really enjoyed this book. Sam Siciliano did a great job in writing it. When I first bought it, I read it all the way through in just two days! However, I rank it at four stars rather than five since Watson wasn't included in the story. Rather it was Holmes' cousin, Henry Vernet, who chronicled the events and joined Holmes on this adventure. I didn't really care for him as a character. Other than that, I say, read this book!!!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Rarely can it be said that a book changes one's life forever, but the works of Siciliano do just that! Moveover, Bible, and make way for Blood Feud! (Or Angel of the Opera.) The author writes with incredible skill, intelligence, warmth and compassion. Why he has not received a Nobel prize yet is a mystery to me! I would highly recommend his books to everyone in the known universe. They should be required reading for all English speakers. My only complaint is that the are seriously underpriced--they should sell for ten times what they do! Yes, Siciliano is a national treasure and is obviously one of those rare God-like beings who have been put on this earth to delight and instruct us lesser mortals. Highly recommended!!!!!!!!!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  38 reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mesmerizing . . . 2 April 2000
By Matthew Weaver - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
There's a hokey premise lurking in Sam Siciliano's "Angel of the Opera: Sherlock Holmes Meets the Phantom of the Opera."
On the heels of a disturbing case (the conclusion of which sets the tone and pace for the rest of the book), Sherlock Holmes and his cousin Dr. Henry Vernier- the book's narrator and an amiable replacement for Watson, with whom Holmes has had a falling-out - are summoned to Paris, where managers of the Paris Opera House have had problems with a mysterious Opera Ghost.
Sounds corny, no?
The truth is, it's anything but. Siciliano ably takes Arthur Conan Doyle's and Gaston Leroux's creations, and weaves them into a story that is possibly better than those of his predecessors.
Vernier and Holmes share a delightful familial connection that takes way from Watson's absence as the two traipse through the underdwellings of the Opera House. It's not hard to imagine the two lurking in the background of Leroux's novel.
With considerable amusement, Siciliano transforms the flat, supporting characters of
"Phantom" into viable human beings.
The object of the Phantom's affections, Christine Daae, is a young woman torn by conflicting desires. Her lover Raoul de Chagny is a repulsive moonstruck suitor. Perhaps not Leroux's original concept of the characters, but infinitely more appealing to the reader.
Holmes and the Phantom's personalities are not altered, but the author presents them in a more accessible manner than Doyle and Leroux's versions- most likely because of the era they were written in- allow.
They are the Holmes and Phantom we are all familiar with; at the same time, they are no longer a stuggle to read.
The clash of titans is not so much a battle between enemies as it is a meeting of equals. Both are masters of their environments, incredibly gifted and neither is completely at ease with humanity.
From the moment Sherlock receives a warning telegram from the Phantom, neither man has the upper hand. When they finally come face to face, Siciliano wisely focuses on the mutual respect that only two of the most popular literary creations ever could have for each other.
Apart, the characters of Sherlock Holmes and the Phantom of the Opera are adorable. But when thrust together, as they are in "Angel of the Opera," the results are mesmerizing.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoughts from a bookworm in Tacoma 20 Oct 2003
By A Customer - Published on
It has often been said that Gaston Leroux was confined by his genre and unable to properly explore the vast regions of a character that has more potential dimensions than, I'd wager, even he could anticipate. I tend to think that this is so with Sherlock Holmes as well. Arthur Conan Doyle's method of presenting his immortal character, in the voice of his long-time friend Dr. Watson, tends to make Holmes appear two-dimensional, in spite of Doyle's obvious storytelling ability. In this, Holmes shares a commonality with Erik, and, thus, they are a prefect match. For those of you who would dismiss this as some sort of silly Internet fanfiction you may put your doubts to rest. It is a remarkable book, well written and enjoyable.
However, in the interest of fairness I would like to voice a few warnings, for in bringing two great immortal characters together, there are some inevitable side effects.
First of all, those who explore this book as a fan of Erik's should know that this is more of a Sherlock Holmes story. He is the central character and it is told from the point of view of his cousin and companion. However, Erik's character is in no way diminished. The side effect is that everybody else gets diminished. Siciliano uses a common technique of storytellers who tackle immortal stories. Raoul, the Persian, and to a lesser degree, Christine, are all diminished to the level of base human vices. Not only that but Watson also suffers as his character is depicted as stuffy and secretly contentious with Holmes. Fortunately, however, these weaknesses, though at times annoying, can be justified as the symptoms of two such formidable personalities as Holmes and Erik coming together in a single story. They take the spotlight and everyone else gets pushed aside. Thus, in spite of all that, for sheer caliber of storytelling, I give this book five stars. It is a fantastic and ingenious spin on an idea that dates back to the 1960s. An idea that I am very glad to see in published form. As a fan of both Holmes and Erik I am very pleased.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Corny premise, awesome book 19 Feb 2000
By "bibliochick" - Published on
The minor stretches to Holmes' character are forgivable, as is the lack of Watson. As a Sherlockian and a Phantom fan, I felt this book was wonderful. The author flawlessly enters a new character into the Phantom saga. Sherlock Holmes and Erik(the Phantom) are written with such depth and give out so much emotion that by the end of this book your eyes will not be dry. The dialogue between the two geniuses is not to be missed. A welcome read to the fans of Erik and Sherlock alike.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for fans of the Phantom 4 May 2005
By telepsa - Published on
Reading this book has been a very satisfying experience. I cannot claim to be a Holmes connoisseur but I have been a fan of the Phantom for some time now, always eager to read or see an alternate version of the story. I have been waiting quite some time for this book and after reading it, I believe it was definately worth it. The plot is very good, even the somewhat minor characters are for the most part well developed -note the conflict between Raoul's background and temperament and Christine's choice between conventional thinking and idealism; Conflicts that help define them and create depth. That certainly is a refreshing change from plenty other versions of the Phantom that over analyse Erik, while leaving every other character shallow and undeveloped. The Persian was a surprise; A direct contrast to Leroux's original and Kay's version, but an interesting change nonetheless that fits right into the story.

There is one more change from the main Phantom's story that proves ultimately enjoyable, although initially questionable; It is the consolation of the Happy Ending ,using professor Tolkien's term. One would assume that this development would deduct some of the Phantom's tragic nature, but it doesn't. I would actually dare say that it makes Erik even more human in our eyes, especially after the way he interacts with every other character in his underground home. There is still the bittersweet taste, provided for the reader by Holmes himself; but ultimately, a feeling of justice and comfort is overwhelming. Certainly, if overworked, this can become tiresome and unrealistic - but in Mr. Siciliano's case, it has become a very welcome addition to the Phantom's legend. Five stars.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes meets Erik...??? Wonderful!!! 1 Feb 2005
By Madame - Published on
This book was actually quite enjoyable (even though I consider myself a Holmes and Phantom of the Opera purist....). I was actually thrilled that this book was published...What more could I want? Both of my favorite literary characters in one book! Overjoyed isn't the word!

I really enjoyed this book...I loved the way our author kept true to the original characters...and I actually could see this story taking place. In Leroux's "Phantom of the Opera"....Chapter 20...we hear of a "shade" which is not "he" (The Phantom), but supposedly a detective....who else could this have been other than Holmes....????
During the 1890s, Holmes was in his hiatus period...Watson believed him dead (according to the Doyle writings) and could not this "shade" mentioned by Leroux be our beloved detective? I'd like to think so!

It is very unfortunate that this book is now out-of-print! It is a great read (though with anything that touches upon "classical" writings...there are "mistakes" when comparing it to the original canons; yet most of them can be forgiven!). If you are still unsure...borrow it from your library before investing in a "rare" out-of-print edition.
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