Masquerade by Joel Abernathy _ Book Review


Title: Masquerade – An MM Phantom of the Opera Retelling
Author: Joel Abernathy
Series:  standalone
Genre: historical, dark, BDSM
Content: Light BDSM (wax play, rope play, etc.), disfigured MC, redemption, action violence, past child abuse
Release Date: August 12
Links : Amazon  |  Goodreads


We all wear masks.

He came to me like a ghost singing songs of the past…
An angel, promising redemption.
Now I know the truth of the man behind the mask, and Erik’s soul is more broken and twisted than I ever imagined.
Even an angel’s wings can be broken.

The moment I heard his voice, I knew he was mine.
Mine to teach.
Mine to mold.
Mine to possess.
The music of our souls entwined is sweeter than any I’ve ever written, but the words to this song tell a story as dark as it is forbidden.
Is it love, or is it obsession?
I’ve lost track, and now I have to choose.
Release my angel and lose him forever, or hold on until his wings turn as black and shattered as my soul.

This is a dark historical M/M retelling of The Phantom of the Opera with a genderbent Christine and an HEA for the Angel of Music.


[I received a digital copy for an honest review]

You think you wish to know what behind this mask, but I assure you, there are things in the world better left unknown.”

Masquerade is the newest release by one of my all time favorite authors, Joel Abernathy. It’s a moving MM Phantom of the Opera retelling that is dark and beautiful.

Angels were, after all, both beautiful and terrible. In that moment, I knew mine was no exception.

Christian’s father raised him to love music but when he passed away he felt alone and slowly lost the passion for it. At 18, he lives in an opera house where he dons the mask of a woman and performs as ‘Christine’ in the chorus. The phantom is a man who lies in the shadows because of his disfigurement. When he hears Christian sing he knows he’s destined for great things and becomes obsessed with helping him grow his talent. Christian struggles with his identity and has to choose to settle for always wearing the mask of Christine to live in the light or be his true self in the shadows. Outside prejudices and jealous threaten his future before it he can express how he fully feels.

There’s nothing petty about wanting to be loved for who you are […] Every last one of God’s creatures deserves that, and never let a soul tell you otherwise.

Alright, I want to express that I am not a fan of The Phantom of the Opera. I have never actually read or watched an adaptation of it in its entirety because it just doesn’t appeal to me. You’re now wondering why I even read this book then, and the answer to that is the author. I’m willing to try anything Joel Abernathy creates because he has a way of creating rich worlds, passionate characters, and beautiful words. Masquerade has all those qualities and I thoroughly enjoyed it from beginning to end.

He pulled me onto his lap, and I longed for his hands to ravage me the way they did the keys and strings he played so effortlessly.

The story line is musical as it flows and transports you to a different time and place. Joel Abernathy has the ability to make you feel completely in a whatever world he has created. The slow build of the Phantom and Christians relationship is perfect and when they come together its beautiful. Masquerade has a strong focus’ on acceptance. Both the Phantom and Christian wear masks in order to feel accepted by the judgmental world they live in.

You’re already everything you need to be, and my only scheme is to have you wear it proudly.

Masquerade by Joel Abernathy is a wonderful MM Phantom of the Opera retelling. Whether you enjoy the original story or not, I highly recommend giving this a read.

4 star rating


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