Curse of the Beast (Curse of the Beast, #1)

First Lines: The icy mountain air stung Star’s aged face.  Crouching, her numb fingers raked the dead leaves of the forest floor, looking for tracks that weren’t there.  She had failed again.

I am such a bad blogger.  Seriously, I just looked to see when my last legit review was and it was October 7th!  Really?!  My goodness.  It’s a good thing I need a distraction from my homework to give this review to you guys.

Moving to Wyoming wasn’t quite what Tayla wanted to be doing before her senior year of high school, but it was best for the family.  At her new school, she quickly catches the eye of quarterback Kyle Harrington, who is also super rich.  But Kyle isn’t quite what he seems.  One night while walking through the park, Tayla becomes ensnared in an ancient curse that binds her to a werewolf.  Can Tayla survive the curse?  Can she do it without endangering her family?

So, the reason I wanted to read this is because it was supposed to be like a retelling of Beauty and the Beast (my favorite fairy tale, if you couldn’t tell).  And it was, don’t get me wrong, but it’s slow working into it.  The first half of the story is Tayla acclimating herself to life in Wyoming with new friends and a new school.  After that, it begins to ease into the fairy tale.

I was really conflicted about this story as I read it.  I mean, REALLY conflicted.  I wanted to yell at Tayla all the time for her crazy flip-flopping on things.  Let me explain.

I mean, sure, we got to see Tayla’s “backstory” if you can call it that. She’s a normal teenager with more than a couple problems at home she needs to deal with. There’s a physically abusive quarterback who immediately becomes creepily possessive of Tayla. That becomes evident in the first two chapters or so. There was just so much that I wanted Tayla to fight back on. Like the quarterback. I would have gladly beat the crap out of him for her. The characters early in the story just did not sit well with me and I felt…not “dirty” but…uncomfortable when I had to read about them.

Also, the Beast? Tayla goes back and forth between how she feels about him so much. Ugh. I kid you not, one paragraph she’d be talking about how creepy he was and how he was practically like a stalker for knowing all these things about her that she didn’t tell him and *literally* the next paragraph, she’s convinced herself that it’s actually very sweet and a kind gesture that he’s gone to these lengths to find out things like what size pants she wears. No, sweetie. That’s not sweet. It’s creepy. You had it right the first time. I just wanted to roll my eyes at her the whole time.

And ok, so this fairy tale lends itself well to a blend between it and werewolf tales. I get it. I just don’t like it. Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairy tale and I didn’t want it to become just another werewolf tale. Also, when the little things from the fairy tale finally did appear woven into the story, it felt cliched. Well, everything except the rose. That was pretty clever, I give it that.

So..yeah.  I mean, it’s not a terrible story, but the writing could have been vastly improved upon.  I wanted to like it so badly, and I did at times, but mostly I just couldn’t get over the creepy qualities that nearly every character possessed.