Summary: I am a beast. A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dog, but a horrible new creature who walks upright – a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a monster.
You think I’m talking fairy tales? No way. The place is New York City. The time is now. It’s no deformity, no disease. And I’ll stay this way forever – ruined – unless I can break the spell.
Yes, the spell, the one the witch in my English class cast on me. Why did she turn me into a beast who hides by day and prowls by night? I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you how I used to be Kyle Kingsbury, the guy you wished you were, with money, perfect looks, and a perfect life. And then, I’ll tell you how I became perfectly beastly. http://www.alexflinn.com/
Review: The hopeless romantic in me loves the classic tale of Beauty and the Beast. Take a deformed man, made as ugly on the outside and he is on the inside, add a beautiful, brave woman to the mix and in the end you have romance made in heaven.
Ms. Flinn did deliver. I enjoyed this modern take on a classic fairy tale. It was well written, well thought out. She has a gift for keeping fairy tales alive and current. Sure, Beastly was a bit unrealistic at times but then again, it is a fairy tale. I liked reading Kyle's transformation. I thought he showed maturity and acceptance. I can appreciate that he was the product of his environment, a spoiled rich kid neglected by an unloving father and nonexistent mother. I enjoyed his friendship with Will, his tutor. I liked Kendra, the goth enchantress. I thought Lindy, Ms. Flinn's Beauty, was a bit mousy but still brave and like her beauty grew on Kyle, her character grew on me too.
I'm not sure I will read any more of Ms. Flinn's novels. I'll admit, I picked up this book after seeing a preview for the movie. I thought it was interesting how instead of a fur covered Beast, Kyle was bald and scarred, completely different from the beasts of the past. As I started reading Kyle's transformation, I was surprised to see he grew fur and claws. I kept reading because I was sure that his rich daddy would find a treatment that would leave him hexed but scarred, tattooed, and hairless. Well, that didn't happen, he remained the hairy monster through out. I'm not mad about it, but that's what I get for reading a book based on a movie preview.
I'm pretty sure that unlike Beauty and the Beast by Marie Le Prince de Beaumont, I won't be reading this book again. But I will pass it onto my niece. I think she'll enjoy it.
And yes, I still want to see the movie.
Final Take: 3/5