2015 Favorites Extravaganza: Day #2
Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay
First Published: 2013
Young Adult, Retelling
In the beginning was the darkness, and in the darkness was a girl, and in the girl was a secret...
In the domed city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra, a Smooth Skin, is raised to be a human sacrifice whose death will ensure her city’s vitality. In the desert outside Yuan, Gem, a mutant beast, fights to save his people, the Monstrous, from starvation. Neither dreams that together, they could return balance to both their worlds.
Isra wants to help the city’s Banished people, second-class citizens despised for possessing Monstrous traits. But after she enlists the aid of her prisoner, Gem, who has been captured while trying to steal Yuan’s enchanted roses, she begins to care for him, and to question everything she has been brought up to believe.
As secrets are revealed and Isra’s sight, which vanished during her childhood, returned, Isra will have to choose between duty to her people and the beast she has come to love.
But I never could've expected this enchanting world, a strange mixture of a bit of sci-fi and a lot of magic, or the beautiful writing, or the captivating characters.
It's almost a shame to call it a "retelling", because it's far more than that. It's its own story, capable of standing tall on its own two feet without the fairy-tale attached to it, and one does not necessarily need to love B&B in order to love it.
These two are just... in one word? sigh. I mean, seriously, the shipping is crazy. They bring the best in each other, they encourage each other to be better, they open each other's eyes. They're also HAWT like lava and so very delicious. And the best part? It takes time for their relationship to grow. They start as semi enemies, then reluctant partners, then friends, then... more. It's beautiful!
The ending of this book was so amazing! And quite different than the Disney ending. Just like, a lot of asdfghjkl really.
Honestly, I don't have enough words to recommend this book with. Just read it, please. It deserves more love!
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