This post contains affiliate links (pictures &/ words) you can use to purchase some of these products that I think are wonderful. If you buy products using these links, I will receive a small commission from the sale at no additional charge to you. All my posts are my honest opinions. Affiliate links have an * next to them. Please see my Disclosure page for more information.
Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty & the Beast
By: Robin McKinley
Publisher/Date: Harper Trophy, 1993
Fantasy, Fairytale Retelling, Young Adult, Fiction
Plus: In-depth character development, setting, and plot development
Minus: Plot moves slowly in the first two parts
Morals: Beauty comes from within, Things are not always as they appear, You can still be happy without money as long as you have the love of family/friends, Selflessness will be rewarded
Beauty is an enchanting retelling of Beauty and the Beast that is divided into three parts. In part I, a wealthy and prominent merchant has three beautiful daughters named Grace, Hope, and Honour (Beauty). Honour was nicknamed Beauty as a child, but as she grew into a plain looking teenager and her nickname persists. Due to several misfortunes, Beauty’s father loses his fortune, and the family moves to the countryside to live a more modest lifestyle. Don’t let the slow plot in Part I dissuade you from finishing the book.
Part II encompasses the anticipation surrounding Beauty’s choice to take her father’s place and be with the Beast. Again, the plot is slightly quicker than Part I, but it still moves slow and steady. McKinley is spinning the yarn developing the setting, characters, and atmosphere surrounding Beauty, her family, and her destiny.
Part III masterfully unfolds the many layers of the Beast and Beauty’s relationship. McKinley portrays the Beast as honorable and congenial and delves deep into his character. This section moves at a good pace.
I originally read this book in the late 80’s when I was in the hospital. This was shortly after I had stopped horseback riding due to time restraints. Beauty was one of my top 5 favorite books, although I was a very reluctant reader at the time. Since then, I have read hundreds of books, and this book is in my top 50 favorite books of all time. Please don’t let the British spelling throw you for a loop. (Think of it as period writing.)
*Preferred this book over Hunted by Spooner.
ALA Notable Book
Featured Image Source