The story of Beauty and the Beast finds new life in this magical and imaginative retelling that’s filled with romance and adventure.
By the time her sixteenth birthday comes around, Belle feels more convinced than ever that she is being called by the wrong name. Unlike her older sisters Celeste and April, whose names suit them perfectly, Belle knows that she is not beautiful. She begs to be called by her given name, Annabelle—or even Anna for short—but to no avail. Her solace is her wood-carving hobby, and she longs to find the Heartwood tree: Legend has it that, when carved by the right hands, it can reveal the face of one’s true love.
One day, during a fierce storm, Belle’s father stumbles upon the fabled tree—only to become ensnarled by it and come face-to-face with a terrifying and lonely Beast, who will set him free on one condition: that Belle carves the Heartwood. Belle agrees, never dreaming that she and the Beast have the same wish: to be seen not with the eyes of the mind, but of the heart.
There is nothing I like more than an intriguing fairy tale retelling that is fresh and original… even though the story holds more similarities to the original story than the most frequently told story these days.
One of the best parts about a retelling is how much more involved you get with the main characters. In the original fairy tales, the story focused on the middle and the end. With a retelling, you can explore the beginning.
Belle does that and it’s wonderful. We have a chance to become very attached to Belle and her family, get a look into who she really is and what makes her tick. It makes the middle of the story that much more exciting and intense.
I’m looking forward to checking out the rest of the books in this series, and I’m glad to discover that I’ve not started in the middle since most of the books seem to be stand-alones.
If you haven’t read them, you should check them out HERE.
Review ©JCMorrows 2018