Author: G.R. Mannering
Published: November 2013
Source: eBook (I bought this through BookBub)
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Rating: 3/5 stars
A dark rendition of the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast!
She bears no name. Her silvery appearance is freakish to the numerous inhabitants of Sago, the cosmopolitan capital of Pevorocco in a fantasy realm. With her mother vanishing at the instance of her birth, she is sent to live with the cruel, rich Ma Dane, where she is punished daily for something, though she knows not what. Tauntingly named Beauty, she flees Sago in a violent uprising that sets out to massacre all Magics and journeys to the furthest point of the country.
But Beauty cannot hide in the grassy Hillands forever. Before long, the State officials find her and threaten to take her back to war-torn Sago where death surely awaits. In a midnight blizzard she escapes them, running into a deep, enchanted forest to a great and terrible beast who will bargain for her life.
But can Beauty accept Beast? Eternity is a long time.
This was a new take on the old story of Beauty and the Beast and I just LOVE fairy-tale re-tellings especially Beauty and the Beast. I fell in love with Robin McKinley’s Beauty when I was just a young girl. Ever since then I try to read all the re-tellings.
So this book basically starts off with Beauty being born in an orphanage and the nurse screams because she is not like other people. She has silver skin, white hair and violet eyes. The mother disappears but leaves behind a crest of the the House of Rose which is a high-class family. The baby gets dropped off and we find out her aunt, Ma Dane, takes her in. Ma Dane is scared of her and basically forgets about her and treats her badly. Beauty(though she has no name until later) grows up to be a rebellious but curious child. Soon, Ma Dane realizes that she needs to take responsibility for her but doesn’t really know what to do with her besides show her off as a weird commodity to other high-class people. Eventually political turmoil (which you don’t really understand. Something to do with Magic Beings. This part gets lost in translation) allows Beauty to be sent off into the hills with the stable master. The stable master has a daughter who is spoiled and is similar to Beauty’s older sisters in the original story. She hates Beauty for taking her father away and complains wayy too much. There is some religious aspect to the story but again it gets lost in the story. Then something bad happens and she runs off into the woods and the Beauty and the Beast story comes back to life. It basically follows that story for awhile and then her “father” is dying and so she leaves to take care of him. The Beast allows it because he loves her and blah blah blah. THEN for some odd reason she goes back to her hometown and meets her mother!!! Then her mother dies? and she goes back to the Beast’s castle to save him and then THE END! (This was a very BASIC summary-, there is too much going on for me to really talk without giving too much away).
This book started out good but then it just went downhill from there. The Magic Being and non-Magic Being plot never got the chance to shine. I had no idea why there was such an issue or why they were being hunted besides being different? And then Beauty was not a Magic Being but she had these powers and then the religious texts talk about a being with violet eyes but again it was pushed to the side. A lot of the backstory got pushed to the side I guess to allow the Beauty and the Beast story to shine but it just made it confusing. Her going back to the city was a pointless adventure besides meeting her mother which we still don’t know anything about. Then the book kinda just ended. I have no idea if it’s a series and another book will come out or it just ended like that. A lot of unanswered questions! I wish the book got edited more because it could have been a great re-telling of Beauty and the Beast but it just fell flat.