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Posted July 12, 2013
'Beauty' is a retelling of the Snow White fairy tale. It follows main character Tatiana Anatolia - known as Ana - as she goes about her daily life as the princess of Ran. Her mother, Veda, is the queen of Ran and the most beautiful woman that Ana has ever seen. Ana used to be beautiful too, but that all changed on her twelfth birthday, when a visiting dignitary gave her a compliment and she saw how angry it made her mother. Ana has been actively keeping herself ugly ever since that day four years ago, mostly by eating pastries and not bathing. Soon, Ana and her best friend Pell are invited to study at the new and esteemed Academy in the mountains. Ana notices that all the girls that attend the Academy are beautiful and she can't help but question the real reason they are all at the Academy. Soon, the girls begin taking a strange pill called Beauty and they fall extremely ill. Ana must discover the truth about Beauty and the Academy in order to save her friends, but what she finds instead just might be the end of her.
This was a really well written retelling of the Snow White fairy tale and I loved the story as a whole. The plot was definitely told in a fairy tale fashion, but it also contained a bit of mystery as Ana tries to discover the truth behind Beauty and the Academy. The book wasn't very long at all and I feel that much of the story got cut off too early because of that. The plot was an excellent one - intriguing and enchanting - and it would have been so much better if it could have developed more. The characters were also well done, but they didn't have the chance to experience much growth and the reader didn't have enough time to connect with them as they should have. Like with the plot, I think that the potential was definitely there and the only thing that should've been different is the length of the book. With more pages, the characters and the plot both would've been able to ripen into an exceptional novel. However, for the short length that we did get, the book was impressive. I love fairy tale retellings and the author definitely delivered with this one. Like all fairy tales, this one speaks of deeper issues such as family, friendship, love, betrayal, and self confidence, among others. The reader is able to take away a valuable lesson about beauty and its true worth. I am definitely eager to read more titles by the author and I definitely would recommend this book to fans of YA fantasy and fairy tale retellings.
Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
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Posted August 4, 2011
Posted February 10, 2012
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