A strange imprisonment…
Beauty has never liked her nickname. She is thin and awkward; it is her two sisters who are the beautiful ones. But what she lacks in looks, she can perhaps make up for in courage.
When her father comes home with the tale of an enchanted castle in the forest and the terrible promise he had to make to the Beast who lives there, Beauty knows she must go to the castle, a prisoner of her own free will. Her father protests that he will not let her go, but she answers, “Cannot a Beast be tamed?”
Robin McKinley’s beloved telling illuminates the unusual love story of a most unlikely couple, Beauty and the Beast.
I do enjoy a good fairy-tale retelling and Beauty by Robin McKinley was no exception to this. This age old story about Beauty being on the inside is perfectly done by McKinley.
Characters: Beauty is not like the other Beauty’s I have read about in retelling s beauce she doesn’t happen to be beautiful. She’s awkward and lacks the looks that her sisters have and yet she doesn’t seem too bothered by it. She’s quite happy to lose herself in her books and when she goes to live with the beast she sees herself become more beautiful and she thinks its because of the magic of the castle but I think its because she starts to see herself threw the Beast’s eyes and she herself for how she looks on the inside. And I love this message.
Originality: This is an original take on a very popular fairytale. All though all the main elements of the story are either the same or very similar – it is written so well that sometimes you forget how old this story is and simply revel in the new ideas and takes McKinley brings to the story.
Plot: Like all fairy tale retelling s this is the classic story of Beauty and the Beast with a few difference’s that are essential to the story. When Beauty goes to live with Beast – I felt the story got a bit repetitive for me and I just wanted some action but in a way – this is the beauty of the story because it shows that Beauty’s feelings for the beast were not something that simply happened over night and it was more natural that way. The build up of Beauty’s back story was very well done and helped the reader understand the full extent of the situation that Beauty and her family find themselves in.
Writing: The language of the story is very well chosen and the writing is very old fashioned and suited the story perfectly and probably even made it better. My only problem was the repetitiveness of some of the story. II felt at points I had just read the same page twice which I was not a fan of.
Kelly’s Rating: This was a great rendition of one of my favourite fairy tales. McKinley manages to put the message of it clearly throughout the story without overshadowing the original piece of work.