Welcome to Romancing the Stacks. This is a series of reviews featuring one of my favorite genres: Romance Novels! Nothing is better than curling up with a good romance. This review will explore The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross.
I picked up this book because the title had Beast in it. I tend to be drawn towards book with the phrase beast in it as it makes me think of Beauty and the Beast, my all time favorite fairy tale. It turns out this is a re-telling story of Beauty and the Beast! It should be noted that this is a re-telling of the original fairy tale and not the Disney one. The original fairy tale has a man with three daughters, he picks a rose from the Beast’s garden to please his youngest, Beast imprisons him but exchanges him for the youngest, and they fall in love. I was interest in this one as it is from the Beast’s point of view. I have read a few books that do that and they are always interesting to see the world from that perspective.
A luxuriously magical retelling of Beauty and the Beast set in seventeenth-century France–and told from the point of view of the Beast himself.
I am neither monster nor man—yet I am both.
I am the Beast.
He is a broken, wild thing, his heart’s nature exposed by his beastly form. Long ago cursed with a wretched existence, the Beast prowls the dusty hallways of his ruined château with only magical, unseen servants to keep him company—until a weary traveler disturbs his isolation.
Bewitched by the man’s dreams of his beautiful daughter, the Beast devises a plan to lure her to the château. There, Isabeau courageously exchanges her father’s life for her own and agrees to remain with the Beast for a year. But even as their time together weaves its own spell, the Beast finds winning Isabeau’s love is only the first impossible step in breaking free from the curse .
I loved this book. I love how Shallcross did not make the sisters the typical greedy and selfish sisters from the original tale. The sisters got their own character development and their own love stories. I loved the relationship between the sisters and how it was maintained. I love how I got three romances in one story. Each romance was a little bit different and enjoyable. I did have a few complaints. The father was awful especially when Isabeau came back and he did something horrendous to keep her at home. Also Isabeau kept insisting that she and Beast were friends, which he accepted at first. It did get to a point where he was upset and screamed that they are not friends. I did not like that part. Beast does not get to decide how Isabeau feels, he does not get to force his feelings on her. I feel the story would have been better if he accepted that she might not ever feel for him more than a friend and then it turned out she loved him. It did take a while for him to admit to himself that he was not just asking her to marry him to break his curse, but that he was because he actually loved her. I felt that took a little too long. I did like how the fairy that cursed him kept showing up again and again even after he broke the curse. The fairy cursed him as he had a frozen heart and not because he was a super arrogant jerk. He had issues with his father that lead to that and I felt that was a fun new addition to this tale I have not seen before.