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3.9 out of 5
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  • I was unsatisfied

    3 stars — After reading Sherwood, I was super excited to read another retelling by Ms. Spooner. And as a fan of Beauty and the Beast, I kind of figured this would be a sure thing. But I wonder if being a fan kind of ended up as a hindrance instead, you know? Because I had expectations of the story, and they just weren’t met…at all. Here’s the thing. I’m a lover of complex characters. And I’m a lover of love and romance, no matter how complicated. And in the end, I favour clear storylines. And this story didn’t quite hit the mark in any of those areas. I was pretty excited when the story started — it was intriguing and different and set in a unique setting. And Yeva was the perfect outcast, not quite fitting in — happy out in nature hunting. I was also surprised by the true and genuine connection she had with her sisters and father. It’s like, she was an outcast, but maybe a lot of that was on her end in some ways. The hunting ended up being a bit explicit at times, and I don’t know if I enjoyed that quite as much…even though I’ve read stories with hunters recently, but I don’t know…something was harsh about it. For me the story dragged on and meandered. The pacing just didn’t quite work for me. I kept waiting for things to happen, or for feelings to change, and they just didn’t. I didn’t end up connecting with Yeva much AT ALL. She was so dissatisfied and full of anger and rage. She held on to things despite actions that spoke to the contrary, and that frustrated me. Because of that, I did NOT feel a connection between Beauty and the Beast much at all — definitely not romantic, barely even friendship. I was SOOOOO disappointed with that. She held on to her need for vengeance for so long, and while I could see Beast softening, I didn’t see it on Beauty’s end at all. She was barely thankful. She just kept making me mad. And then things come to a head, she goes home, there’s all this weirdness there that lasts for wayyyy longer than I wanted, and I just wanted to get back to the good stuff. Then when she finally does get prompted to go back it felt reluctant, like the magic was more the reason instead of actual caring about the Beast. And THEN she goes on that huge journey, without him, and kept forgetting, which was just more and more unsatisfying. And UGH! I was just so bummed. I appreciated the way the author was trying to weave in the Firebird stuff, that was cool for sure. But eventually it was a bit repetitive, and honestly I was dissatisfied with the lack of lessons learned. *sigh* So kind of a lame review, but I was just bummed by the end of the book. Ah well.

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