Review Detail

Cruel Beauty FeaturedHot
Young Adult Fiction 3706
Original and full of win
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
I was really excited to read this book because it would be my first Beauty and the Beast retelling. It did not disappoint. In fact it was wonderful and would have easily been one of my favorites of the year had it not ended the way it did.

Now I am a huge Disney fan. I love my princesses and I love my fairy tales and I love my HEAs but this book is so different from a typical Disney movie yet it manages to maintain that magical atmosphere that fills you with joy and makes you want to sing.

This is a story about a girl upon who the fate of a kingdom depends. A girl who has been raised to know she will die. A girl who has been raised to kill a beast.

Nyx is the female lead I’ve been looking for a long long time. She is real. She is not portrayed as some sort of hero even though that is kind of what she is. She is not a nice girl who is excited about giving up her life to save the kingdom. Hell she wants to live. She hates her sister (while simultaneously loving her) because she gets to live while Nyx has to sacrifice her life. Her sister is the loved daughter, the naïve sheltered one while she is the one whose aunt gave her advice on how to have sex with her soon to be husband. She hates her father but she still wishes that he felt some regret for what he was condemning her to. She has ‘poison’ in her heart. She isn’t a sweet girl, she can be cruel, she is clever and will use your weaknesses against you if it'll help her but in spite of this she is still capable of being nice. Underneath all her bavardo she IS a girl who is scared, a girl who doesn’t want to die, a girl who wants to be loved even though she isn’t perfect.

Ignifex was incredibly charming. You cannot help but fall for him, even when he is the enemy. I think what’s most interesting about him is that he can charm your pants off even when he is not actually a good guy. He never actually acts in a way that would label him an asshole though, he is just, a mystery. How do you define evil? What he does makes him a bad guy but are the people who come asking him for favors any better themselves? People, who are selfish, people who think they deserve the best of everything. These aren’t innocent people who go to him asking for favors, so is he evil for making them suffer? Or is he not?

The romance between the two is swoon worthy. The Disney fan in me had tears in her eyes half the time. They accept each other for who they are, they don’t expect the other to change. It takes a while for them to get there but they do, they do get there and it’s worth the journey.

Cruel Beauty is a refreshingly original novel. It takes two of my favorite ‘genres’, fairy tale retellings and mythology, (I have many..eek) and mashes them together. It does that really well too. The world building is magnificent. It has a certain magical feel to it but it is also dark, in a way that sometimes gives you goosebumps. Add to that the elements from greek mythology and you have a winner.

There was a certain twist that I am sure everyone will see coming. The problem with the said twist is that it is poorly executed. Very poorly. I wouldn’t even mind the obviousness had it actually made sense when it happened.

Which brings me to the ending. The ending did not work at all. It left me confused and I didn’t get the kind of closure I had sought. I expected a completely different ending. I WANTED a different ending. Because the ending we got kind of took away from both Nyx and Ignifex’s personality. It changed them into something they weren’t, they were no longer the characters I fell in love with. The ending was too perfect. Too sugar sweet. With such a great main character, you don’t actually want that kind of ending because it takes away what you love most about her. I pretty much refused to acknowledge that ending, I mentally re-wrote one. Yes that is how much I didn't like the ending. I guess this was mostly a 'it's me not you' thing and I am sure other people won't have the same problems I did (except Khanh, but I already ranted about it to her so I didn't turn into a rage beast thanks to her).

Despite everything, I’ll have to say, this was one hell of a retelling and I recommend it to everyone. It has a strong female lead, a male character you can actually see yourself loving and a wonderful relationship. Plus the love child of a fairy tale retelling and Greek mythology is bound to be awesome.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Incredible Animals
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
In this illustrated guide, discover fascinating and unusual information about...
Special Delivery
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A lovely book to share with children in an expecting...
Eyelike Stickers: Trains
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Hundreds of irresistible, reusable, and collectible stickers to mix, match,...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
It is twenty years since the events of La Belle...
Heiress Apparently (Daughters of the Dynasty, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The first book in an epic and romantic YA series...
Winter Light
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
WINTER LIGHT is the story of 15-year-old Mary Donahue...
Talent
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Sandee Mason is convinced her life will change if she...
WITHIN THE FOLDS OF A SWAN'S WINGS
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
What if the one element that has always defined you...
The Good Girls
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
One of Us Is Lying meets Sadie in this twisty,...
Frozen 2: Dangerous Secrets: The Story of Iduna and Agnarr
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Sixteen-year-old Iduna harbors a dark secret. On the surface, she...
All our Hidden Gifts
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Maeve’s strangely astute tarot readings make her the talk of...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twelve-year-old Cassie needs a horse. She’s determined to move up...
A Higher Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 9)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Just when everything seems to be perfect, it all falls...
A Happier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 8)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Two guys. One girl. A big confusing mess. ...
A Healthier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 7)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
She broke his heart. Will he ever forgive her? ...
A Steadier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 6)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
He wants her back, but she’s already taken. ...

Latest Member Reviews

Friend Me
 
5.0
"Roisin has moved from Dublin, Ireland to the Boston area with her mother and older brother Michael. Her mother works..."
Focused
 
4.0
"!"
The Bad Guys in the Baddest Day Ever (The Bad Guys #10)
 
4.5
"Snake is dead, and the Bad Guys, as well as the League of Heroes, are gathered for the funeral. Faced..."
Nikki Tesla and the Ferret-Proof Death Ray
 
4.5
"Nikki Tesla is an espionage novel for pre-teens. It’s exciting, engaging, and utterly unique. Nikki Tesla is a..."
Shake It Off! (Wish #8)
 
4.0
"Bria has made some poor choices concerning friends and social media back home in Chicago, so her parents have decided..."
Not if I Can Help It
 
4.0
"Willa has struggled with a sensory processing disorder her whole life, but with supportive parents and some occupational therapy, she..."
My Fate According To The Butterfly
 
5.0
"My Fate According to the Butterfly is probably the first Middle Grade novel I’ve read in a very long time...."
 
5.0
"The Book case is a perfectly suitable mystery, with a cast of characters that will amuse readers both young and..."
Sarai and The Around The World Fair
 
3.0
"Though rich and vibrant in illustrations and culture, Sarai and the Around the World Fair is a slow-mover. ..."
The Pepper Party Picks The Perfect Pet (The Pepper Party, #1)
 
5.0
"Absolute fun is one way to summarize The Pepper Party Picks the Perfect Pet. Perfectly placed and brilliant illustrations helped..."
Ready, Set, Drive!
 
3.5
"READY, SET, DRIVE will take your child's imagination for a ride. Each page has a different scenario for the reader..."
A Friend For Dragon
 
5.0
"All Dragon wants is a friend, but doesn't have any luck. The squirrel is too busy, the hippo is too..."
Two Dogs in a Trench Coat Go on a Class Trip (Two Dogs in a Trench Coat #3)
 
5.0
"Library copy Sassy and Waldo are super excited to go to the city museum (even though their..."
Bentley (The Puppy Place #53)
 
5.0
"Bentley is a story for children who love dogs, and for children who can read on their own ages 7-12,..."
The Light Jar
 
4.0
"Nate and his mother leave their home in the middle of the night to get away from Gary, an emotionally..."
Because of the Rabbit
 
4.0
"Emma's father is a game warden, and when she accompanies him on a rabbit rescue, she falls in love with..."
Animal Stories (BOB Books)
 
5.0
"The pacing and simplistic words in the set ANIMAL STORIES (BOB BOOKS) is just what the emerging reader needs. The..."
Unicorn Treasure Hunt
 
5.0
"When Treasure receives a mysterious package, she opens it to reveal a treasure map. She has to follow the clues..."
The Three Little Superpigs: Once Upon a Time
 
4.5
"THE THREE LITTLE SUPERPIGS: ONCE UPON A TIME is an adorable and fun retelling of the classic story of the..."
Focused
 
4.0
"lea really wants to do well in school, and thinks it is her own fault that she doesn't get all..."