This is a departure from Frederick Forsyth's normal thriller books. It is a sequal to Gaston Leroux's The Phantom of the Opera. Inspired by a meeting with Andrew Lloyd Webber, who longed for a sequel to his world-renowned musical, Forsyth decided after extensively researching the subject to rekindle the legend.|
The story opens in 1906, 12 years after the Phantom escapes a bloodthirsty mob at L'Opera in Paris and mysteriously vanishes without a trace. On her death bed,
the Mistress of the Chorus, Madame Anionette Giry, confesses that she plucked a
horrifically deformed boy from a carnival prison and spirited him away to live in recesses of L'Opera.
Keeping to the shadowy nooks of the opera house, Erik Mulhiem, became known as the Phantom, living a mysterious, solitary existence. However, that abruptly ended when he fell in love with a beautiful diva, Christine Daae. Unable to control
his obsession, he flees to America with the help of Madame Giry. There, after years of destitution and misery, he builds a vast empire and devises a plan to ensnare his beloved Christine.