Saturday, August 21, 2010

Beauty by Robin McKinley

I read this book in one sitting, in about 4 hours (which includes a couple of potty breaks). If you look up the page count you can see what a slow reader I am. ;) But the important thing to note here, is that I almost never do one-sittings. Nevah! Even if I'm really into a book I will read it over a couple days, especially if it's longer than 200 pages. I can't really explain why I read this all at once, except to say that it's SNUGGLY.

As far as plot goes, it's a pretty straight-up rendition of the Beauty and Beast fairy tale (legend? myth? I don't know what this goes under), at least as far as I could tell. And no, I do not mean the Disney movie. Get out. This one has Beauty's sisters and non-crazy!father and wonderful brother-in-laws and invisible servants and the whole, "Oh yeah, Beauty likes roses" thing. ^_^ Seriously, Ger, I love you. Greatheart, the horse, did remind me a lot of the Disney!horse, Filippe, but I don't know what the source on that is.
The tone of the book is also very fairy-tale-ish, which could get a little too snooty at times, but I still liked it and thought it worked well since she was going straight with the story. It was funny because I had totally wrong preconceptions about the book; somehow I figured it was a newer rendition and by that I mean has a big twist on the original story. So I kept expecting something that never came. Kinda like when I wait for trains. Or the bus.
I really loved Beauty as well as her Beast. ^_^ He was completely adorkable. However, I think that lessened a lot of the tension in the story. I mean, the Beast is just a SUPER NICE GUY. After his initial "K GIVE ME YER DAUGHTER AND DIE WITH GUILT" temper tantrum, he's a complete gentleman to everyone, and was completely not-scary, despite the fact he's enormous and has giant, if retractable, claws. I like the Disney version in that the Beast has a temper and is not the best person until Belle gets to work on him. This Beast seems to have all his problems worked out (whatever they were in the first place, that was unclear) except for his emo tendencies.
I also thought the ending was wayyyy too happy, but again, that's kinda a trope of the fairy tale business unless you're doing one of those twisted versions that I kept expecting, so this might be a casualty of my own preconceptions again.
But besides those two things, yeah, this book was VERY entertaining and enjoyable and cute and all that rot. I loved ALL the characters, they were just too cute and/or jolly. Yes, jolly. So I guess I would recommend this book to people who don't mind a lot of happy fluff and not many surprises-unless you grew up in a cave and don't know the story at all. 4/5.


Snazel said...

Hmmm, this sounds really good! Though knowing what you consider snuggly books, I'm feeling wary. :D I'll put it on the list.

Bahnree said...

^_^ No, this one really IS snuggly!