Ann's Reviews > Beastly

Beastly by Alex Flinn
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's review
Mar 08, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: bullying, fairy-tales, fantasy, high-school, magic, monsters, new-york, new-york-city, retellings, romance, young-adult, high-society, beauty-and-the-beast, fantasy-urban-fantasy
Read from August 18 to 20, 2011

There was certainly a lot to dislike about this book, but I was surprised that I didn't dislike it as much as I'd anticipated, so yay! I'd give it 2.5 stars if I had that option, but it doesn't seem to fit with my other two star books.

As I said, there are a lot of really bad things - Kyle's over-the-top selfishness ("my dad says that people shouldn't have to look at ugly people"), the wretched, unnecessary (and self-serving) chat sessions, the fact that the author cheapened her premise by making Kyle speak in a old-fashioned manner when he's a beast...all just silly, silly things. I also found it fascinating that I thought the movie did some things better than the book. If the author was going to make this a modern retelling of the story, why not make Kyle a "beast" in the eyes of society, not a literal beast? The implications of that are much more interesting than turning him into an actual monster. Similarly, I didn't buy the premise of getting Lindy into the house at all. I didn't think she would ever agree to it, and the movie made the circumstances more believable, as thin and convoluted as they were. Again, there were more interesting issues that the author could have raised, but she chose weird times to be completely faithful to the story.

Having said that, I still felt compelled to keep reading and wasn't bored at all. It was nice to see that the heroine was just a normal girl, but that she became more beautiful in Kyle's eyes because of her personality. Alex Flinn did a rather poor job of explaining Kyle's interest in Linda, which seemed to spring from casual curiosity into love in a couple of pages, but I liked that she wasn't just an example of "take your glasses off and you're suddenly stunning!" Although fairy tale modernizations are hardly a new idea, I thought there was a lot of potential here - unfortunately, the author didn't take advantage of most of it.

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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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Julie I picked this up several times and never got past the front flap...

message 2: by Ann (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ann LOL really? I think I gots to see the movie too...Mary-Kate Olsen as the school witch? Sounds hilarious.

Julie That's really Mary-Kate?? Every time the commercial came on Drew asked if that was her and every time I said no! Wow...

message 4: by Ann (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ann It is!!!!!

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