Friday, April 12, 2013


Beastly by Alex Flinn
Read:  2013

A modern day adaptation/retelling  of the story of Beauty and the Beast, taking place in New York City.  Kyle Kingsbury is handsome, wealthy, spoiled and shallow. He gets the shallow bit from no one strange.  His father is a new anchor and, although he provides food, shelter and things for his son, he doesn't give much in the way of love or attention.  Kyle is kind of a spoiled brat, who doesn't realize that he's not the only shallow person in his private school.  

Kyle looks down on one person too many and gets himself cursed by a witch for his wicked ways.  He wakes up one morning a hideous beast.  His father freaks, he can't face his schoolmates and the witch who cursed him, can't undo it.  Only he can.

Kyle's dad hides him away in a big old house in Brooklyn after it is determined that there is no way to surgically correct his condition.  His only company is the housekeeper, who Kyle has been pretty rude and dismissive to up until now, even though she's always been fair with him, and a blind teacher.  Kyle's only connection to his old life is a mirror that Kendra left with him.  It shows him whatever he wants to see. Through the mirror he finds Lindy, a girl he had a brief encounter with, just before the curse hit.  

I didn't like Kyle, but I definitely liked Adrian, the guy he became through the course of this book.  Sure, he could have learned these lessons through the general course of growing up.  His classmates were not exactly complex, opaque creatures.  There was no loyalty or honor among them.  In this case, I think the curse was probably better than him either truly realizing what his peers were really like and learning from it, or taking the chance that he would remain the shallow creep he started out because his looks and money were somehow an excuse to avoid being human.  

I just noticed that there are a whole bunch of these books. I don't know how I missed them. I definitely plan to read the others.  I'll keep you posted on what I find.

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