Title: The Stars May Rise and Fall
Author: Estella Mirai
Dreams don’t always look the way you expect
Teru came to Tokyo with dreams of making it big in the glam-metal visual kei scene, but three years later, all he has to show for it is a head of hot pink hair and some skill with an eyeliner pencil. He may look the part, but he doesn’t sound it, and constant bickering among his bandmates has him worried about his future. When he finds a mysterious business card in his bag, he’s willing to take any help he can get.
Help comes in the form of Rei, a crippled, disfigured composer whose own career was ended by an accident before it had really begun. With Teru’s voice and looks, and Rei’s money and songwriting skills, both of their dreams seem about to come true – but a forbidden kiss and a late-night confession threaten to tear it all apart. Now Teru, who has spent most of his life denying his attraction to men, and Rei, who vowed long ago never to love again, must reconcile their feelings with their careers – and with their carefully constructed ideas of themselves.
THE STARS MAY RISE AND FALL is an M/M retelling of Phantom of the Opera, set in Tokyo at the turn of the millennium. It comes with a healthy dose of angst and a dollop of nostalgia, as well as an age-difference romance, a physically disabled love interest, and memorable characters who will stay with you long after the pages are closed.
So when I first picked up this book, I didn’t know what to think. A M/M retelling of The Phantom of the Opera sounded fantastic. Especially since it’s set in Japan. Every expectation that I had was met and surpassed. Teru is a very realistic character with many conflicting emotions. He just wants to succeed, but when he meets Rei, he becomes unsure of just how far he is willing to go to achieve that dream.
As you can guess, there is plenty of angst and suspense. I honestly had no idea how the story would end, and sometimes, I was even confused about who I should root for. Teru though was a very solid character throughout and the growth that he experienced during the story made for a very compelling tale.