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Cruel Beauty | Review

Well, this one gets 5 Stars for sheer enjoyment.

I picked up this retelling, Beauty and the Beast being my all time favorite tale, fully expecting to like it.

And that's what makes it even more excellent that I did.

Normally I try very hard not to expect the world (can only end in disappointment, no?). But "just one chapter to start" turned into finally forcing the bedside light off at 2am, and a day of hiding the book beneath my desk, reading instead of working. Sometimes, a story grabs me in a way that refuses to let go...a way that not even reality can shake off. And in those times, I'm not going to stop and inspect every single aspect of the "whys" and "hows", I'm just going to freaking go with it. Because I felt this one in my gut from the minute I picked it up, and every second my eyes couldn't be glued to the pages (you know, so I could shower, drive, have short but polite conversation with some coworkers) my chest ached thinking on the characters and where I would find them when I could next look.

Cruel Beauty found a power over me that had me living in a castle full of shifting doors, clever riddles and heart-achingly simple romance. Well done, Rosamund Hodge, for a feeling like that leaves you a bit scraped out when the last page turns, but I already knew long before the end that this one was going in the "will read again" list. 

The fact that this is a stand alone only makes me happier - truly some stories need only their neat telling to be absolutely perfect, and that's what this author does with Cruel Beauty. So now I'm going to add Crimson Bound to my list of "need to read", and try to force my mind back for the last hour of the work day and not think about how I want to read about Nyx and the Gentle Lord all over again.

As I said, I'm not going to dissect all the reasons, I'm just going to go with the feeling and tell you to read it. So, go on. Read it.

And check out this review on Goodreads to join in the discussion!

Virginia DeFeo