Beauty and the Beast (Timeless Fairy Tales, #1)

41snlt75b7lFirst Lines: Prince Severin happened to be pacing in the little hall when the stained-glass skylight shattered, and a young woman fell through the ceiling with the broken glass.

I’ve signed up for BookBub, which emails you daily with book deals in your favorite genres, and this showed up once on it for either really cheap or free.  Naturally, I struck.  Hello.  I named my blog after this story.  And with all this NaNo stuff, this seemed like an easy story to read while I wrote my own story.

From Goodreads: Once upon a time Elle made a mistake. A small miscalculation sends her through the roof of an enchanted chateau. Stranded until her broken leg mends, Elle is unwillingly forced to rely on the good will of the sour chateau owner —the cursed Prince Severin.

Prince Severin—the commanding general and staunch supporter of his brother the crown prince—is cursed to look like a beast until a maiden falls in love with him. He has given up all hope of shattering the curse, and has only disdain for Elle.

Unfortunately, the pair can’t seem to avoid each other thanks to the meddling of the chateau’s cursed servants. Eventually Elle’s playful manners and Severin’s hidden gentleness draw the pair together.

But not all love stories can end that easily. After all, Elle is not what she seems, and Severin’s life is placed in danger when hostilities flare between his brother and the monarchs of a neighboring country. When Elle risks everything to save Severin, will he be able to forgive her for her lies?

Elle and Severin are interesting characters. They both take a little while to warm up to, but they’re sweet once you get to know them. I liked getting to follow both of them as they slowly started to warm up to each other.  Elle has a lot of secrets, but she’s got a good heart.  And we have a hard time seeing what Severin’s really feeling because he’s used to no one caring.  So it was really fun to see those two open up.

It wasn’t just a simply Beauty and the Beast retelling.  I liked the background plot to all of this, with warring nations and magical beings that inhabit the land. It was something I wasn’t completely sure was going to work (I’ve read other books before where it hasn’t), but it did. The main plot is definitely about Elle and Severin, so this background stuff was so far removed from the story that it was just here and there, enough to make things interesting but not to overpower the story we love.

I’m kind of a purist with this particular fairytale, so the closer it sticks to the source material, the better. This did a nice job of including all the moments that I have come to look forward to while still creating its own identity. I’m impressed.  That’s not easy to do.

Overall, I really enjoyed this.  I can’t wait to see what else this author has done.

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