Member Reviews

I have to admit I had heard about Revelle and was so looking forward to this, so it’s not such a surprise I adored this, but based on that cover alone if I hadn’t heard about this I would have requested it, how stunning is that cover ? Moulin Rouge isn’t one of my favourite films (don’t shoot me) but this book is definitely going to be one of my favourite reads of this year, The world building and magic systems are s beautiful, so well thought out and integrated, the characters so well developed and three dimensional, I don’t think there was anything I even had to complain about or bugged me. This is a wonder, romantic, engaging and magical story, you really need to read this

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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In 2001, Moulin Rouge became one of my favorite movies of all times. As a theater kid I was thrilled to experience the rebirth of the movie musical, and I fell in love with the characters, the setting, and the story. Revelle by Lyssa Mia Smithtakes the outline of the movie and turns it into one of magic and mystery set against the backdrop of Prohibition Era New York.

Given my love of the movie that inspired it, I had a strong suspicion I was going to adore this book before I even picked it up. I wasn’t wrong, and I did love every moment of this story. However, I am also a big believer in originality and therefore I could only give it a 4 out 5 for plot as I felt it too closely followed Moulin Rouge.

Despite the copy of the overall plot of Moulin Rouge, Smith works in a lot of original aspects to Revelle. The use of magic is so organic in the story, and I loved the idea that there were magical families who inherited specific powers. Also, the fact that the magic of this world always came at a price made it all the more interesting for the reader. The twists and turns the plot takes also keeps the reader engaged from start to finish, making for a read that will draw you in and keep you turning page after page.

The characters in this book are amazingly well developed and written. At no time to any of them, including the supporting characters, ever feel flat. Each character in this story serves a purpose and feels unique to the story.

I especially loved Luxe and Jamison. Luxe is a charming, independent, but loving leading lady. Her drive to help and protect her family makes her endearing from the first moment you meet her on the page. Jamison perfectly fits the mold of the penniless, handsome stranger, but his back story and the unexpected twists it takes makes him so incredibly interesting.

Together they are a smoldering combination. Yet, despite their initial attraction, their love is allowed to grow over time. It’s not exactly love at first sight, but it is the sort of love you root for as the story unfolds.

Overall I gave this book a 4.5 out 5 stars (rounding up to 5 for sites like Goodreads and Amazon). It’s charming, romantic, and engaging and I would highly recommend it for any reader over 13 who loves a good historical romance.

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It’s been years since I’ve seen Moulin Rouge, and I’m glad I wasn’t actively comparing this book to the movie. The book felt unique and fresh. I loved the magical world-building and I’m hopeful for some more books set in this world. The love triangle was intriguing and the action was suspenseful. It was probably a little melodramatic in places, but I often feel that with romantic fantasy novels. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys the genre.

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Vibrant and action-packed, a perfect read for fans of Moulin Rouge. I was drawn to the setting and premise, and the climax (which spins the source material on its head) was really moving.

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A new YA fantasy by debut author Lyssa Mia Smith, Revelle takes place in the 1920s during the Prohibition Era, and it has major Moulin Rouge, Romeo and Juliet, and Gatsby vibes with a little Caraval mixed in. I loved it! It’s an immersive and entertaining read, with strong world-building and a unique magic system. The island of Charmant is feeling the strain of the Prohibition movement, and Luxe, the protagonist and star of her family’s show, feels the burden of keeping the family business afloat with her unique and powerful magic and skill. So, when Dewey, a member of the wealthiest (and super powerful) family offers her a preposition – taking care of her family’s financial woes in exchange for pretending to be his fiancée during an election – Luxe can’t refuse. However, secrets and danger, as well as feelings for the mysterious Jamison Port, threaten to destroy everything Luxe holds dear.

Revelle is told from Luxe and Jamison’s perspectives. I love both of these characters and that we get the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of each. Luxe is so burdened by familial expectations and pressures, and I felt so bad for her. She feels so trapped, but duty constricts her, and she has secrets that have forced her to push others away even though she doesn’t want to. On top of that, she’s dating a man she begins to suspect has nefarious goals, and her feelings about the family, the business, Charmant, and more are conflicted.

Jamison reminds me so much of Christian from Moulin Rouge. He is so sweet and kind and lovely. Jamison is new to the island, much like Christian is new to Moulin Rouge, but Jamison feels like he’s been to Charmant before. With only snippets of memory and a few clues, he is determined to learn more about his parents and his origins. It’s interesting to see him unravel the secrets of his past and his connection to the island and its people. Their stories and the problems they face are compelling, complex, and intriguing.

There is a bit of a love triangle reminiscent of the Christian/Satine/Duke love triangle in Moulin Rouge. In Revelle, Luxe must face her ever-growing feelings for Jamison while balancing a superficial relationship with Dewey. It’s clear who Luxe cares for (and who truly cares for her), but their happy ever after seems impossible, especially as Dewey becomes more protective, secretive, and territorial.

I thoroughly enjoyed this story. The characters are great (shout out to some of the amazing secondary characters – Millie, Collette, Roger, Trys, Nana, and so many others!! Loved them!), the magic and setting are vivid and immersive, and the story is engaging and suspenseful. I look forward to reading more by this debut author and am thankful to NetGalley and Harperteen for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.

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Holy crap, I loved this book so much. Time traveling and historical fiction are two categories I don’t find myself wandering into often. However, Revelle blew me out of the water. It was completely dazzling and darkly marvelous.

“Meanwhile, I was a firefly circling in a jar. Entertaining to watch, but slowly suffocating.”

Revelle is told in dual POVs, Luxe and Jamison. However, there are no hiccups and the story continues flawlessly through each of them. I truly enjoyed following both of our characters. Jamison is honestly beyond perfect and everything you want in a book beau. Luxe is also perfect in her own way and I felt for her so much throughout this story.

Also, there are so many fantastic side characters that make this story. Roger, Trys, and Trevor to name few that stole my heart.

There are such high stakes in Revelle. Secrets. So much mystery and thrills happening around every corner. I just loved the feel of this story. It was haunting and dark, yet fun. I couldn’t get enough of this glorious book and it is absolutely worth a buy. Go pre-order it now!

Special thank you to Netgalley & Harperteen for a copy.

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This was a very fun story…Moulin Rouge in 1920s New York with prohibition and a really interesting magic system.

The setting and the magic system were stellar. They sucked me in and had me developing theories throughout the book. The characters were delightful and complex, if a bit unrealistic. (It’s kind of creepy that the Revelles put their teenage daughters on stage to be alluring. I wouldn’t like my uncle talking about me the way Wolffe talks about the acrobats.)

I wished for some more depth in the side characters. Trys, Roger, Colette, Millie, and Trevor all had such potential and we’re so fun to spend time with on the page, but I wanted to get a better sense of their full lives, not just the ways their lives impacted Luxe and Jamison.

The main conflict between Luxe, Jamison and Dewey felt straight out of Moulin Rouge; which was fun at first, but I wished for something surprising in there to make it deviate a bit from that known storyline. I appreciated Jamison’s journey to hunt down his parents, and the context of Luxe’s headaches (far more intriguing than simply having tuberculosis from a life of prostitution), but I wanted something to surprise me there, and yet the main storyline was the most predictable.

Overall, this was a fun read in an interesting world with an intriguing magic system and some lovely characters. I’d recommend.

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Thank you to Harper Collins a children’s books for the opportunity to read rage and review this arc which is available Feb 14.

This was an interesting book. It’s Moulin Rouge and set on a magical island with a bit of prohibition NYC era in there.

Luxe is a great main character. String witty and resilient.
Jameson is mysterious. The things Luxe does to save her family’s business and navigate this world are pretty good

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I liked parts of this novel. The main characters Luxe and Jamison were interesting and fresh! I eventually was invested in the story because I wanted to make sure they’d be okay in the end. I did stay up until 1:00am to finish because this story has some very high stakes.

However (and this is a BIG however), there was simply too much going on in terms of worldbuilding. The infodump at the beginning was overwhelming and I gave up trying to understand the magic system. I had to restart this book twice to try and get a handle on everything. There were too many threads to keep track of. My other complaint is that it almost felt too “sexy” for a YA novel. And yes, I KNOW this is Moulin Rouge-inspired, but it’s also YA. It’s all closed door, but the concept of an 18-year-old’s uncle magically pimping her out gave me the ick. I think this one just wasn’t for me.

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I really liked this! I loved the world-building and magic system a lot. And, normally this is my point of contention with a book, I really liked the romance! I really enjoy the way the characters were developed and that they each felt individual. I'm not always a huge fan of dual or multiple POVs, but I didn't mind it in this story, honestly. I can't wait for more from this author--I highly recommend this one!

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Take the rough outline of Moulin Rouge, transport it to prohibition-era Coney Island, then add in magic and you have the utterly delightful Revelle by Lyssa Mia Smith. From start to finish, the threads of Moulin Rouge are very strong, bringing this close to retelling territory, but a big switch at the end gives anyone dreading the end a happily ever after.

This story is told through dual point of view, alternating between the two main characters with each chapter. There isn't any overlap, so a scene is never seen from both of their perspectives. It keeps the pace fast and makes this book hard to put down.

The only awkward parts, and I'm really stretching here, are when language is too modern for the prohibition era. It's hard to believe someone would say "I am a crap friend" in the 1920s. Overall the prohibition piece is essential to the plot, so the time period makes complete sense.

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This was so much fun to read! I thoroughly enjoyed the romance, world-building, and magic system the author created here. Also, the imagery was beautiful. The descriptions of the Big Tent on show nights, the glamor, and incredible performances really pulled me in!

Additionally, the desolate way that Luxe described her family's conditions, compared to the way that Jamison perceived that Big Tent upon his first visit really helped me understand just how incredible the Revelle's ability to charm people is.

I ABSOLUTELY LOVED the main characters! Luxe, Millie, Jamison, Colette, Roger, Trys, Trevor, and Nana all have a very special place in my heart. I really enjoyed seeing their relationships strengthen as the story progressed, and I'm so happy that Jamison has this found family aspect to his life after a tough upbringing.

This was an emotional rollercoaster in the best possible way, and I can't wait to see what comes next from the author!

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Inspired by Moulin Rouge, Revelle is a story about love and sacrifice. It is infused with magic from the first page to the very last. Magical illusions meets Prohibition. If you love characters who feel the weight of the world and the family on their shoulders, you will love Luxe. I instantly felt for her, the ways she exerts her own secret magic to save her family and how she's given up on her dreams to do it. But also, who can't love Jamison? He's the ultimate cinnamon roll boy who swings first and asks questions later.

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This is a fantastic read. Careful, dazzling worldbuilding, flawed and believable (and lovable!) characters, and sky-high stakes. This is perfect for lovers of Moulin Rouge, The Night Circus, and Stephanie Garber's Caraval series. Can't wait to see more from Lyssa Mia Smith!

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I was so excited to receive an advanced e-arc of Revelle thanks to NetGalley and HarperCollins Children's Books, and wish to say thank you! The following review is my honest opinion.


Moulin Rouge! is my all-time favorite movie. It's quirky, funny, dramatic, exciting, delighting! Am I listening to the soundtrack as I write my review? Possibly...

Since it says in the blurb that it is inspired by my all-time favorite movie, I can concur that there are scenes that are heavily influenced, but this story has a life of its own and it swept me up in its enchantment.

Set in 1920s Prohibition era, we are introduced to the island of Charmant right off the coast of New York, and its magical inhabitants. Luxe Revelle, the star of the show, The Radiant Ruby, the ice princess, is sassy, desirable, and self-reliant to a fault. It's hard being the star, as Luxe is ostracized from her family, and kept on a pedestal so high, even her trapeze artist cousins can't reach her. Her need to protect her family, her own secrets, and their livelihood, at all costs creates some complicated problems. Such as her dalliance with their hated rivals son, Dewey Chronos. He is the answer to all her family's problems, or so Luxe thinks. Charming him into giving her everything she wants should be easy, except things don't go to plan when she charms a nobody orphan, Jamison who?

Jamison is on a quest to find his parents, but his search only brings up pain and devastating secrets concerning the families of Charmant. Jamison has always looked towards his past, but now he can't help looking at Luxe and what could be, His friends (the best supporting cast that I adore!), Roger and Trysta tell him he's being a fool, but Jamison is sure that there is much more to the ice princess than anyone, even her family, knows.

I really loved watching these two figure out their feelings, and their connection. And while they both act like idiots, I just have to accept that it is essential to draw out the tension and the storyline.

And the story is fantastic! I was immediately sucked in and couldn't put this down. As an older reader, I noticed some things that I felt needed a little more explanation, or some more thought in general, but since this is a Young Adult, I let most slide.

If you are a fan of magic, sacrifice, mistaken identity, slow burn romance, mystery, drama, and especially Moulin Rouge! then this is the book for you.

Some warnings: This book does contain mature content such as alcohol, abuse, murder, extreme cases of jealousy, manipulation, and obsession.

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Thank you NetGalley and HarperCollins for this book in exchange for an honest review.

3.5/4 Overall I enjoyed this book. The magic was well thought out and intriguing. The setting of the story, Charmant, felt alive and like a real place. It was easy to fall in love with all the characters in this book (even the beginning). I loved the circus and the Revelle family. Luxe as a character particularly shined.

On to some criticisms. The payoff to some of the plot and mystery felt rushed and inconsequential. The ending of the book especially felt anticlimactic and rushed. For as much as the Luxe talked about her family we didn't really get to see too much of them or see why they called her an "ice queen". And, for as close as the family claims to be I find it hard to believe, or just unfortunate, that none of them realized what was going on with Luxe. The relationship between Luxe and her cousins was one of my favorite parts of this book yet they were barely a part of the greater plot of the story. It would have been nice to see them get more involved, It also would have been cool to see Luxe use her acrobatic/non-magical performer skills more. Luxe has impressive and powerful skills and talents outside of her magic and it would be awesome to see her use them.

While critical here, I really did enjoy this book. I would definitely recommend it as an exciting YA read! I hope the author plans to continue writing books in this world because I would love to learn more about it and would enjoy seeing Luxe return home. Even if it was from the point of view of a different Revelle or even from someone in a different magical family.

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3.25/5 stars! Things I loved about this book. The setting, magic and prohibition taking place in the same book, and everything about Jamison Port. I love him. But... per the prohibition-era, the world needed to be dynamic and loud and colorful to fit the times and I think it was not that successful with this. Was it an enjoyable read? Yes. But I'm hoping the author's world-building in future novels can pull me in better.

I received an advance review copy for free through NetGalley, and I am leaving this review voluntarily

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Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book through NetGalley; all opinions expressed here are my own.

I have mixed feelings about this book. On one hand, it's very well written, and the plotting is excellent. I loved the concept of the different magical families, and the way that the different types of magic and their costs interacted was so intricately put together it completely hooked me on the story. Throughout most of it, the plot remained engaging and the twists were unexpected. Most of the characters (except for Jamison, oddly enough) were impressively complex and well-rounded, Luxe and Dewey especially. In fact, the parallels between them really provided some food for thought and raised interesting moral questions (more on that later).

As for the things I didn't appreciate, there were some plot elements that just weren't solid as they should have been. For example, the theme of the value of family and of sharing everything was huge in this book, but the actions of the Revelle family made it ring hollow. If they really care about each other so much, why are some of the children sent off to an orphanage- couldn't the family take care of them? And beyond that, why are the members of the family so insistent about pressuring each other into working in the Fun House, a place that had the potential to be exploitative and traumatizing for these young people? The worst part was when Luxe talked about how her young cousin wanted to volunteer to take on the injuries of her older cousin to allow this cousin to continue to perform. What loving family lets a child put herself through that?

This brings me to another frustration- the choices made by the characters, while they seemed noble on the surface, were in reality very problematic. From the very start of the book, Luxe was focused on magically manipulating others (specifically Dewey). The book makes clear that she was 'only' doing so to help her family, but this doesn't negate the very significant moral issue with this type of behavior. As Jamison himself says later on in the story, "There's always a choice," and throughout the book Luxe continues to make the wrong choice. If these issues had been addressed more significantly at some point I wouldn't have minded so much, but instead the book just sends mixed messages. So, overall, this book was thematically disappointing.

In the end, if I'd recommend this book it would be on the basis of its engaging, well-written, intellectually challenging plot, but not on the strength or value of its themes- which is to say I won't be recommending it very often.

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This book is everything I wanted -- a gorgeous and inventive atmosphere and magic system, a strong protagonist, a swoony love story. I would read so many more books in this world! Thank you so much to the publisher for this ARC.

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Reveile is a magical book that draws you into its world with the first page. The characters are your friends throughout the twists and turns of it’s magical lands. The story alternates between the perspectives of luxe, a magically star of the Revelle world and Jamison an orphan of the mainland. This was a great story and I’d love to visit this world again!

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