What the f*** was this piece of sh**?!
Needless to say, it was one big FAIL. There are so many reasons why this was so bad and here they are:
1. The point of a fairytale retelling is to keep the central elements of the original while adding new things that make it creative. I'm sure there are so many better retellings of Beauty and the Beast (which is my favorite fairytale), including the Disney movie, but this? Beauty by Robin McKinely was almost exactly the same as the original fairytale, only made into novel length by endless descriptions of clothing and food and jewelry and other stuff that I DON'T CARE ABOUT!!!
2. The sad thing is, this had potential. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite fairytales and I've been fascinated with fairytale retellings recently. This was one big FAILURE. I cannot stress this enough: this had potential but what little good there was in this book was wasted. I could cry, it's quite upsetting.
3. The thing is, there are so many descriptions, but none of the things that really mattered. Mainly: the Beast, Beauty or the scenery. I had no idea what the Beast looked like. I wouldn't have known what Beauty looked like if she wasn't on the cover. And I had barely any idea what the setting looked like.
4. So many weird phrasing and subplots that could have been gotten rid of.
Examples of bizarre phrasing:
"There was a pause that snickered in my ears" (page 50).
"There was something rather terrible about this young man's beauty, though I could not say where the dreadfulness lay" (page 144).
"Muddy hazel eyes" (page 3)
There was more, but I can't find them right now. I'll add more later (believe me, there were more)
And there were so many subplots that could have been scrapped. The library thing (don't wanna spoil it, but if you've read the book you probably know what I'm taking about), Beauty's sixth sense, the other creatures in the woods that don't like The Beast
5. Warning: some harsh language and cursing may occur. This is what I hated most about this book.
THERE IS NO F***ING CONFLICT!!!!!!!! What is keeping Beauty "trapped" at the Beast's palace?! The Beast is a gentleman and caters to her every whim. Nothing is keeping her there except her own stupidity, damnit!!!
6. The characters are all either stupid or just have no personality. Except for Beauty. She's a spoiled, stubborn brat. And the Beast is a wimp.
7. The ending is rushed. The big climax and the closing of the story occurs in 20 pages. Robin McKinely should have thought this out more.
In short, this was a mess. A failure. Terrible. Wasted potential.
Honestly, the Disney movie is a better retelling. Go watch that instead.
So I heard that McKinely wrote another retelling called Rose Daughter. If she's learned from her mistakes writing this book, and Rose Daughter is not just Beauty being regurgitated with different wording (Beauty already lacks originality and is exactly the same as the original) then I might read it. We shall see....