31 May 2014

BEAUTY.

BEAUTY by SARAH PINBOROUGH.

SOURCE: A GoodRead's win.

THE BOOK {According to Amazon.co.uk}: Beauty is a beautifully illustrated re-telling of the Sleeping Beauty story which takes all the elements of the classic fairytale that we love (the handsome prince, the ancient curse, the sleeping girl and, of course, the haunting castle) and puts a modern spin on the characters, their motives and their desires. It's fun, contemporary, sexy, and perfect for fans of Once Upon A Time, Grimm, Snow White And The Huntsman and more.

FIRST SENTENCE {Chapter 1: He Needs An Adventure}: It was a warm spring and the king and queen took their breakfast on the balcony outside their private apartments, enjoying the fresh air without the burden of any sort of protocol.

MEMORABLE MOMENT {Page 54/55}: In a glass by the bed, a single red rose sat in water, all of its petals scattered around the glass save the last one which drooped low but still clung to the stem.

MY THOUGHTS: The third book in a collection of fairy tales retold for a modern audience. Essentially this is a re-telling of Beauty And The Beast which incorporates characters from several other well known classic fairy tales.

Given the warning/promise on the cover that this was 'a delicious, sexy Sleeping Beauty story' I didn't for one moment think it was going to be a suitable bedtime story for really young children but having finished it I must admit to being confused as to just what market it was aimed at.

With some wonderful ink illustrations that I'm sure children would find appealing, whilst for the main part Beauty was a fairly innocent read about a third of the way or so through there were several pages of an erotic and violent nature making it anything but suitable for younger readers.

Though still not convinced as to the merits of re-tellings, of whether as some believe they are a reflection on life today just as the Brothers Grimm stories were a reflection on life all those years ago or merely lazy, unoriginal story telling, I have to admit that I did think the twists to the original plots combined with the joining together of characters from several stories intriguing but for me that was the only appeal..



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14 comments:

StarTraci said...

I am always a little leery of re-tellings, myself. If the story brings something new and different cool but just rehashing someone else's story is not interesting. I don't know if they have it there but there is a really funny children's book which retells the Three Pigs story from the wolf's perspective that I do love.

You're the blog I love today. http://www.astarinmyownuniverse.com/2014/05/31/share-the-love-2-pen-and-paper/
:-)
Traci

Kelly said...

While I usually give these re-tellings a chance in film version, I'm not often drawn to them in the written form. Except, maybe, for the "true story of the three little pigs" my children had growing up, told from the wolf's viewpoint. ;)

I would probably pass on this.

Kelly said...

Ha! I just realized y'all were talking about the same book I mentioned.

Kelly said...

And you must have deleted your comment. Please note I don't use "y'all" in the singular, so there were two comments before my first when I said that.

Now I'll leave your comment thread alone!

Tracy Terry said...

Traci: Yes, I remember reading this to a class full of seven to eight year olds. It was such fun as they acted out all the parts using puppets.
Many thanks for the love, you don't know how much this meant to me.

Kelly: I know what you mean. though not showing here at the moment I thought Once Upon A Time was an amazing piece of tv but can't really imagine it in novel form.

Brian Joseph said...

I actually think that these retellings in the form of novels can work and on the surface the approach that this one takes seems good. Based upon your commentary it does sounds like it falls a little short

Tracy Terry said...

Sorry, Kelly, a fly caught me unawares and in trying to swat it I somehow managed to delete my comment.

Suko said...

Thank you for sharing your sincere thoughts about this one Tracy. :)

Naida said...

I don't mind re-tellings, as long as they are creative and bring something new to the classic.
This one sounds good.

Melliane said...

Oh they're currently released in French in this moment and our covers are so beautiful! You should see it, just amazing! I have book 1 because a friend gave it to mee but I still need to try it.

Stephanie Faris said...

I love that you include the first sentence of the book in your review. That's one thing I always look at when deciding whether to read a book or not!

Bo said...

I normally do love modern re-tellings of fairy tales. The stories, or the heart of the stories , are timeless and are as relevant today as when they were written. That being said, I must confess I am not overly fond of the prose just from the two passages you copied. And while I have no issue with modernizing the fairy tale, I still believe the retelling should keep to the spirit of the original story. I don't think I would really like the steamy dressing up of the story.
But now I know not to bother, so thanks for the head's up!

Literary Feline said...

I don't generally mind re-tellings, as long as they are well done. I don't know about this one. The "erotic and violent nature" make it less appealing to me.

Gina R said...

Yeah. .. I'm all for trying retellings but the cover alone lost me here. Thanks for the inside look Tracy!