The Sultan's Favorite

The Sultan's Favorite

by Anne Burnside
4.7 10

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The Sultan's Favorite 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Mistressoftheheart More than 1 year ago
Finished the online section of Sultan's Favorite (on Fanfiction) about two weeks ago, then immediately ordered the full novel...received it yesterday...and finished it last night...:-) Loved it! Truly a good story! Characters are complex, plot twists are unavoidable and the emotions are real! I have read MANY published Phantom sequels and this was one of my favorites. Cant wait to start "The Heir". Great book!
belladonna1975 More than 1 year ago
The Sultan's Favorite by Anne Burnside is the single best Phantom of the Opera "sequel" I have read. Much the way Susan Kay's Phantom retold the original story in fabulous detail; Anne Burnside has opened a window into what happened to Erik after the curtain dropped in the original as well as fleshing out the character's background and giving us an insight into his thoughts. The story opens with Erik as the architect in charge of building a fantastic palace for the sultan of the Ottoman Empire. The sultan soon acquires a third wife who quickly becomes his favorite. Erik is drawn to Alexandria for her beauty as well as her intelligence and in the process of working with her on her portion of the palace, he finds himself losing his heart again. Is history destined to repeat itself or is this a woman who can finally see the true man behind the mask? Even then, how can they ever be free to be together? The writing was riveting and I was sucked into the story from the very beginning. It had everything you could want in a book including romance, action, intrigue, mystery and suspense. The re-emergence of characters from the original Phantom of the Opera merged seamlessly with the new characters. The only fault I could find with this book is that it eventually had to end. Rarely do I read a book that once finished, makes me want to immediately reread it but The Sultan's Favorite is such a one. There is even a glimmer at the end (at least to my mind) that a sequel to this book could be possible. If that were true, I would snatch it up in an instant (and perhaps even do a little happy dance). Regardless, this is Anne Burnside's debut novel and I look forward to reading anything else she comes out with.
BillyB More than 1 year ago
The Sultan's Favorite BY: Anne Burnside PUBLISHED BY: iUniverse PUBLISHED IN: 2009 ISBN: 978-1-4401-1907-1 Pages: 435 Ages: Adult Reviewed by Billy Burgess In this sequel to Gaton Leroux's "The Phantom of the Opera," the phantom, Erik, is living in the Ottoman Empire. He's working as the sultan's personal architect. He's still mourning the rejection of his love, Christine. The sultan takes a third wife, Alexandria - the widow of the ruler of Constantinople, and demands Erik to make changes in the designs for the new palace. The sultan wants his new wife to have her own court. Erik hates Ottoman Empire and the way the women and slaves are treated. He remains there to finish the palace because he believes it will be his greatest achievement. With one look at Alexandria, he knew she was unlike the sultan's other wives. She was smart, beautiful and independent. Erik begins spending time with her. Alexandria wants to get closer to this masked man. Erik tries to control his ongoing feelings for her. He never thought he could ever feel this way about another woman after Christine's rejection. Soon, he can no longer hold back his feelings. He starts a passionate affair with Alexandria. Being a fan of the original novel, I was intrigued in reading "The Sultan's Favorite." After reading the first few pages, I was hooked. Author Anne Burnside has done a wonderful job in continuing Erik's journey into this violent world of the Ottoman Empire. I was surprised to find two other characters from Gaton Leroux's "The Phantom of the Opera" pop into the latter half of the book. I recommend reading this book if your fan of the original or for anyone who wants to read a good romance.
Akasupermanda More than 1 year ago
I loved 'The Sultan's Favorite.' I picked it up and didn't set it down again until I was finished. Set in the Ottoman Empire, it delves into the culture and practices of a world that held me fascinated. The characters were enjoyable and I connected with them all. I hoped for Erik and Alexandria to be together even while I felt for the sultan and the position he was in. It was a good romance with an antagonist who is human, not just evil. Erik, the mysterious Phantom of the Opera ghost, is running from his bitterness of his love's rejection of him. Throwing himself into designing and building architectural masterpieces, the man in the mask is currently building the new lavish palace for the Ottoman Empires' sultan. During the building of the palace, Alexandria, the new widow of the ruler of Constantinople, is brought to be the third wife of the sultan. The world she finds herself thrust unwillingly into is very different than the life she had come from. While she used to be her husband's only beloved wife, she is now the third, and the lowest of wives. The first wife proves to be friendly and welcoming, but she quickly meets the ridicule of the sultan's second wife and harem when the sultan establishes her as his favorite wife. Working with the sultan's newest wife to design her court is the last thing Erik wants to do, but he is surprised to learn she is a well educated woman with a quick mind who loves to read and whose opinion was respected in her last home. As he teaches her about architecture he also sneaks her books and debates with her, treating her as an equal. He soon comes to care for her far more than he will admit. When Alexandria is kidnapped for ransom while on a journey, Erik is the one who rides to her rescue and in the heat of the moment they reveal to each other the depths of their feelings for one another. When they try to go back to the way things were before they know it is impossible. Somehow they must find a way out of the hopeless situation.
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
There is a popular trend within many genres to write a continuation, or new story, using characters from an existing television show, movie, play, or book. Romance is one of the genres where this movement is prevalent, and within this genre, the story of Erik, the hero (or is it villain?) of The Phantom of the Opera is a well-liked topic. Author Anne Burnside, in her debut novel, tackles the life of Erik beyond the Paris Opera House in the compelling story of The Sultan's Favorite. In Burnside's version of the tale, after freeing Christine so she can marry Raoul, Erik leaves France to work for the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire as the sultan's personal architect. The story begins with Erik working furiously to build the sultan's new palace. He is in a bad mood (a recurrent theme in the book) because he doesn't have enough slaves to get the palace built within the short time that the sultan demands. The sultan is the all-powerful ruler of his empire and nobody argues with him with the exception of Erik. The two have worked out a unique relationship where Erik is allowed to speak his mind, up to a point. All appears well until the sultan takes a third wife, Alexandria. The beautiful Christian widow to the ruler of Constantinople is given to the sultan to keep peace between the two lands. She quickly becomes the sultan's favorite wife and it isn't long before Erik begins to notice the lovely woman too. Following the sultan's wishes, Erik and Alexandria spend time together planning her lavish living quarters. Erik, convinced that his one true love is back in Paris, refuses to acknowledge his growing attraction to Alexandria. When Erik accompanies the sultan, Alexandria, and their entourage to Constantinople to get design ideas for the palace, his passion for the sultan's wife rises to the surface. But soon the beautiful woman is kidnapped by Titus, the ruler of nearby Phocaea. Erik, with his many talents at getting into difficult places unseen, is the one who comes to her rescue. During the rescue, the intensity of the pair's love rushes to the surface and soon the two are trying to hide their love from the sultan, knowing it will lead to certain death. The Sultan's Favorite is a hot and steamy novel that involves three passionate people, each desiring nothing more than love. At the onset, the sultan is actually the more likeable of the two men as Erik has a vicious temper and appears to have little or no redeemable characteristics. The sultan, although brutal in his punishments, truly cares about his wives, particularly Alexandria. When he realizes he is falling in love with her, he lavishes his favored wife with gifts. Although women are forbidden from expressing their opinions in his world, the sultan relishes his talks with Alexandria behind closed doors. However, in public, the sultan is unable to show weakness of any kind, even to his favorite wife. Burnside does a convincing job of slowly bringing Erik around to a more sympathetic character. At first he is devoid of any semblance of affection, unable to do anything other than show his brilliance with his designs and yell at those around him. It takes a while for the masked man to acknowledge his attachment to Alexandria and the reader is likely to at first be rooting for the sultan. Quill says: The Sultan's Favorite is a juicy romance novel that will tantalize the reader with an adventure to a far-off land.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For those open minded readers who want more of the Phantom of the Opera, this book deserves a chance. Due to the mature content (violence/rape), it is not for everyone. But the content was written well and did not dwell forever on details of violence as some books I've read. The story keeps you guessing with a number of cliffhangers and is fast moving enough for a long book. The characters were quite complex - for example, the sultan is not a simple, evil rival to Erik, the phantom. Instead, you begin to understand the position he finds himeself in, even though you still want to hate him. The fact that he has multiple wives but deeply loves Alexandria (thus the sultan's favorite) shows he is capable of love but only to a certain extent in his world. The phantom starts out fairly angry and bitter in this story, but grows along the way in admitting to his heart when it comes to Alexandria. Overall, a good story any phantom fan (or romance fan) will want to add to their collection.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought that the first two-thirds of the book was excellent, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The last one-third of the book stretched the limits of imagination to the breaking point, and I found myself shaking my head in disbelief page after page. If I had only read the first 2/3 of the book, I would have given it 5 stars. Overall it was a really good love story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well written. Follows what we expect from Erik as a character and shows a softer side as well as some romantic scenes. Highly recomend.
Kylie51 More than 1 year ago
Definitely not a historical romance; but if looking for a great fictional story, this is perfect for even those not familiar with the phantom story.
BellaCara More than 1 year ago
Few characters stick with you even after the book is closed. The tragic hero that is Erik, from The Phantom of the Opera, is one of those characters that will revisit your heart and mind for some time to come. In Anne Burnside's book The Sultan's Favorite we catch up with our champion, Erik while he tries to rebuild his life after the horrifying events of the Opera Populare. This story finds Erik now in the Ottoman empire and chief architect to the Sultan. While constructing the new palace his work is derailed by the Sultan's newest acquisition, Constantinople and the widow of it's ruler, his third wife Alexandria. Because of her goodness and beauty it is not long before Alexandria becomes the handsome ruler's favorite wife. But being elevated in status does not come without it's price, it is only by Erik's quick thinking that an assassination attempt on Alexandria's life is thwarted. While Alexandria is no exception to Erik's short temper, it is not long before the two become unlikely friends. It is Alexandria's thirst for knowledge in a world where a women's education is forbidden, that intrigues Erik. So when the duo is forced to work together during the construction of her opulent quarters within the new palace, he finds himself falling for this unique creature. When the Sultan takes an trip to visit his new city events turn tragic, and there is no other to call to the rescue but Red Death himself. The Sultan's Favorite is a story of a woman who must learn to live within her new world of rules and limitations, and our Opera Ghost's battle with his feelings over another hopeless love affair. Anne Burnside's depiction of Erik is one that would make Leroux proud, as she captures the fire and passion that has made The Phantom so infamous. Ms. Burnside has resurrected our love for the underdog who we love to cheer for, the monster behind the mask, and has given us another chance to see him fight for love. This book is a worthy sequel to the first novel, and a pure joy to read, and allows us to visit a character who has stolen our hearts again.