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Fairy Tale Quartet #1

Monster Among the Roses

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“Do you know how to get to the rose garden?”
“No, you can’t go there. A monster lives there.”

Shaw Hollander is desperate.
Broke, unemployed, and determined to help his ailing mother, he falls on the good graces of a wealthy benefactor who is willing to give Shaw a job at his mansion in order to pay off his mother’s debts. Suddenly finding himself surrounded by lavish riches, he has no idea what his duties truly entail until he’s sent to the rose garden and meets the tragically mutilated Isobel.

This Beauty and the Beast story holds true to the core of the fable while shaking off the element of fantasy and dragging it into present day reality. Shaw and Isobel are ready to let you climb into their four-wheel-drive pickup and take a ride with them into their version of happily ever after, but only if you first dare to gaze upon the monster among the roses.

296 pages, Paperback

First published July 25, 2017

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About the author

Linda Kage

44 books5,456 followers
Linda writes romance fiction from YA to adult, contemporary to fantasy.

Published since 2010, she first went through a 2-year writing correspondence class in children’s literature from The Institute of Children’s Literature, then graduated with a Bachelor's in Arts-English with an emphasis in creative fiction writing from Pittsburg State University.

She currently lives with her husband, two daughters, a cat named Holly, and nine cuckoo clocks in southeast Kansas.

She started out reading with the Baby-Sitters Club, then moved to Sandra Brown, Linda Howard, Julie Garwood, and LaVyrle Spencer in high school. Now, she's all over the place with her romance reading tastes.

A few of her favorite things have been:
Stranger Things, Supernatural, Cheers, Teen Wolf, Umbrella Academy, Outlander, Yellowstone, Grey's Anatomy, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Shawshank Redemption, Dirty Dancing, Harry Potter, Tangled, A Walk to Remember, Dr. Pepper, Roast Beef with mashed potatoes and onion rings, the poem "Equipment" by Edgar A. Guest, and To Kill a Mockingbird.

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5 stars
228 (27%)
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309 (37%)
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239 (28%)
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42 (5%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 126 reviews
Profile Image for Ramona Popescu.
364 reviews133 followers
July 30, 2017

I love Linda Kage and I’ve missed her stories so much!! When I saw that she was releasing another series I was so excited and seeing that the topic was slightly changed than the “Forbidden Series” made me more curious about reading it.

“Monster Among the Roses” is one of the sweetest and most heart melting stories I have read in this period and I feel very fortunate to discover it and enjoy it the way I did. Linda got her inspiration from Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” and she did a fantastic job in recreating in her own style the story and characters.

Shaw is our leading hero, a poor boy that desperately needs help in order to save his mother. She is very sick and after a bakery business got bankrupt, she owes money to a lot of people. Shaw is ready to take his mother’s responsibilities and make a deal with anybody who is willing to give him a loan to cover the debts. He goes to Henry Nash, one of the richest men in town and asks for help. Nash decides to cover all the money Shaw’s mother owes in exchange for this services as a handyman in his mansion.

Little did he knew that this will be a cover up for the real reason Shaw is needed. During a tragic fire 8 years ago, Nash lost his wife and his daughter, Isobel, was left with terrible scars, reminder of the incident. After that she became a different person, secluded, rude, unrecognizable and focused on her rose garden. She didn’t left the house, barely spoke to anyone and lived a solitary life. Shaw was brought here as a distraction, to make Isobel open up more, to see a slight change in her behaviour. He was not suppose to befriend her, much less fell in love with her.

I loved Shaw for being him, straightforward, devoted to his mother and simply genuine. He didn’t have a hidden agenda, he was a truly nice guy, but considered himself inferior to others because of his economical condition. He left his pride aside when asking Nash for help and he was willing to give up everything for his mom. After realising his mission in the Nash Mansion, he practically didn’t care that he had to interact by contract with Isobel, because he already wanted to do that liberally. He was very intrigued about her, about her nasty and rude manner of talking, about what made her this way. He was also very attracted physically to her and this made his mission very hard.

Soon, he and Isobel will become very close and everyone will see the progresses she was making. She is not secluded any more, she will help Shaw in various projects in the house, they will build a new library together and all of this will make her fall in love with him. I loved their connection and the depths of their relationships, because it was not something that began physically, but from the heart. Despite Isobel appearance and that everyone called her a monster, Shaw saw the inner beauty that surpassed everything. He could see how fragile and genuine she was, what a great heart and generosity lies in her and without knowing, he fell in love too. He always stood up for this feelings and for her, not once being ashamed or making Isobel feel uncomfortable.

I loved the story, it was like medicine to the soul. It was sweet, heartwarming and besides that it gives you so much hope that love can be born from true feelings. It give you hope that somebody can love you for who you are, see behind the hard exterior and find a way to release your true self. That is what Shaw did with Isobel. He built trust and friendship and after that, only by being honest and speaking from the heart, he was able to get to the real person, a person that has so much love to give and receive as well I loved the way the roses symbolised their love and friendship and I loved all the research Linda put in recreating such an unique background to the story, from the rose gardens, to the pool house and all the historical rooms that Isobel shown Shaw during their tour of the property.

Looking forward to book 2 :) 5 stars:)


For more reviews please check https://readwithloveblog.wordpress.com
Profile Image for Aestas Book Blog.
1,059 reviews74.8k followers
October 15, 2017

“Do you know how to get to the rose garden?”
“No, you can’t go there. A monster lives there.”

FAIRYTALE FANS, THIS IS FOR YOU!! As a huge Beauty and the Beast fan, I was drawn to this book from the moment I heard about it. It's a modern twist on the beloved fairytale, however this version is very different because it is the opposite story! In this one the "beast" is the heroine and the "beauty" who falls in love with her is the hero!

Shaw Hollander is desperate.
Broke, unemployed, and determined to help his ailing mother, he falls on the good graces of a wealthy benefactor who is willing to give Shaw a job at his mansion in order to pay off his mother’s debts. Suddenly finding himself surrounded by lavish riches, he has no idea what his duties truly entail until he’s sent to the rose garden and meets the tragically mutilated Isobel.

C'mon, aren't you just a little intrigued?? :D

This book was funny, romantic, endearing, and exciting! I could feel the bones of the age old fairytale in the foundation of this story, but this book was a genuinely unique and refreshing twist unlikely any of the others I'd previously seen. It takes place in a modern world with no magic and is about a lost man determined to help a fiery scarred woman rejoin the world and the unlikely friendship between them that grew into a passionate love story.

The heroine had been badly scarred in a house fire years ago. While half her face retained it's natural beauty, the other half was completely disfigured. After her recovery though, everyone outside her family treated her like a monster so she retreated away to her father's estate and buried her life in books and roses. She'd been isolated from the world for so long that she'd almost forgotten what it was like to enjoy someone's company and have them enjoy hers so it completely threw her off her guard when this strange, kind-hearted, beautiful man suddenly showed up in her life and didn't care in the least bit about her scars and only seemed interested in getting to know the real her.

“I wish I could give you twice the amount of pleasure for every second of pain you’ve ever suffered.”

I loved how strong, stubborn, and fiery Isobel was. Her sharp wit and snappy comebacks kept me smiling through many scenes. And I swooned hard over how sweet and just genuinely good a man Shaw was. He was certainly a worthy fairytale hero. And I mean, come on, let's be honest here. Fairytale or no, how could anyone not swoon over a guy who literally dedicates himself to building you your dream library with his bare hands.

This wasn't a completely perfect book to me -- a few parts of the story were slow, some of the language was a little odd here and there but it didn't really bother me, and despite the fact that they did become friends first, the instalove was still pretty insta, and I did wish for an epilogue -- but I still really enjoyed reading it. I've read several other books by this author and her writing is strong and flows very smoothly, the characters here were endearing and constantly made me smile, the story was a refreshing twist on a longtime favorite, there was a angst towards the end, and the romance was swoony and delightful. Plus it was just really fun to read a new version of this fairytale!

People didn’t generally let others see their vulnerable parts until they felt safe. You never knew if someone else would be disgusted, or think less of you, or if they’d use your weakness as leverage to hurt you. It was purely human nature and self-preservation to vet a person first before letting them prove to you that you could trust them enough to see if they’d continue to like you in spite of, or even better, because of your flaws.

So it must suck that the most vulnerable part of Isobel was right out in the open, on display for everyone to see… Which only made me more determined to gain her favor. One day, she’d look me straight in the eye without ever worrying about hiding anything. That was my goal.

This is the first standalone in a series of interconnected standalones. It is a complete story. The next one I believe will be a Cinderella twist which I'm also intrigued by and will check out when its released.

While this isn't exactly a holy-shit-drop-everything-to-read-it type of recommendation, it is definitely a book I'd recommend to anyone looking for something a little different. I'd consider it a bit of a 'palate cleanser' if you will. It was a very entertaining and well-written story and I would happily put it on my favorites list!

Rating: 4 stars! Contemporary Adult Romance, can standalone.



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Profile Image for Lover of Romance.
2,760 reviews793 followers
July 24, 2017
This review was originally posted on Addicted To Romance


In Monster Among The Roses we have a enchanting contemporary fairy tale romance with a unique twist on the tale "Beauty and the Beast". In this book, there are many similarities with the original fairy tale. But there are also some distinct differences as well. What I found most unique was seeing the way this story unfolded.

Our beautiful love story begins with our hero, who has recently learned that his mother's shop is falling behind, that his sister has stolen all of his mothers funds, and with her health in decline, and they owe many debts, and with Shaw selling off everything he owns and losing his job, he is desperate. So he goes to the man that can help, he offers his services in return of helping with their debts. Shaw knows he has basically sold his soul, but he will do anything to save his mother. He is then instructed to arrive at a certain address, and his job will be not what he is expecting. Shaw will work as the handyman, but most specifically work in the rose garden of his solicitors daughter. But what he isn't expecting is to find a fire breathing, passionate woman who has suffered results from a fire. Some would call her a "monster" but Shaw is intrigued and fascinated by this woman who is fiercely protective of her rose garden and doesn't want anything to do with him, or it only appears the way. Shaw soon realizes that his job is to bring challenge to Isobel's life again.

Isobel, when she was only a teenager, made a reckless choice like all teenagers in love do, and the result was a fire in the house, a fire that scarred her for life, and where she lost her mother in the fire. Isobel has had numerous surgeries on her face and neck, which were quite painful. But Isobel lives isolated from the world, only existing in her garden and the library. Isobel's father is desperate to find any way to bring her out, even had the inexperience but drop dead gorgeous man into his home. Little by Little Shaw is able to bring Isobel out, challenging her out, pushing her boundaries, and teaching her to live life again. Soon Isobel and Shaw discover a tender and powerful love that will be tested.
Love isn't about deserving. Because who deserves love? We're all miserable, imperfect idiots who probably need swift kicks in the ass more than anything. No, love is about connection and feelings, and I had that with you.
Monster Among The Roses is a story that is passionate, intense, heart felt emotions are vividly portrayed and a perfect portrayal of "Beauty and the Beast" with a few twists. Our hero is the beauty of the story, and our heroine is the beast per say. We have some charming characters that play the roles of Mrs. Pots, Cogsworth, and Chip too. Linda Kage has become a favorite author of mine over the past couple of years, and she really walloped me with this book because it was so fantastically well written and deep yet still had some great wit that really balanced out the story. The romance begins with two people who are completely different in some ways, but also have the same passion for certain subjects. They are both in love with books, and they connect in a library of all places. Yep if you are like me, then you will fall in love with seeing these two work side by side on a project while falling in love along the way. Isobel respects and admires Shaw for his talents and also his love of history and art.

This story brings together some unique dynamics that I enjoyed to the fullest. The way that Isobel and Shaw learn to love and accept each other flaws and all is so endearing. The complex dynamics to the story adds a flair of desire and love. Seeing the way they look past the faults and misconceptions and look beneath the surface, adds a unique emotional intimacy that vibrates through the whole story. And of course we have the villain of the story, who adds some tension and conflict when you least expect it. I will say that there are some moments in the story that get pretty heart wrenching at times. Both Shaw and Isobel learn some vital life lessons in this story, but we also see how their love sustains them through the most rough patches.

This book is raw and beautiful in a glorious way that rivals the "Beauty and the Beast" fairy tale....a story of pure love, redemption, inner healing! A MAJESTIC LOVE TALE

Great. I was lost. Shading my hand over my eyes, I decided the far right should take me in the general direction I wanted to go. So I went that way, only to end up at the edge of the house, but not where I’d started, and not close enough to the rose garden to get me inside.

Strangely enough, however, a boy played outside, using sidewalk chalk to color a picture of…what the hell was he drawing? Maybe some kind of dying animal with blood gushing from its side and an arrow sticking out of its back.

It didn’t look right, whatever it was.

I shook my head and jerked my gaze from the disturbingly morbid sketch. “Hey, kid.”

The boy jumped and looked up, hopping to his feet and backing away from me as I were the scary one.

No idea who he was; he looked too young to be Mr. Nash’s son from the photos I’d seen, plus he had white blond hair, the complete opposite shade of the young man in all the pictures in Mr. Nash’s office. But he was here, so he’d have to do.

Wanting to appear as non-threatening as possible, I smile and waved. “Hey. Sorry for bothering you, but do you know how to get to the rose garden?”

That must’ve been the wrong question to ask. His face drained of color. “No,” he said, shaking his head. “You can’t go there.”

What? “Why not?”

“A monster lives in there. Half her face is melted off. She eats the thorns from the roses so she can spit them at people, stabbing them in the neck to slice their throat open until they bleed out and die.”


Somehow, I’d stumbled across one of the children of the corn. Nice.

Lifting my eyebrows, I drew my own step in reverse. Time to retreat. “Dude, that’s gruesome.”

Please don’t kill me. Please don’t kill me. Please don’t kill me.

He gave a serious nod. “It’s true. My mom’ll tell you she’s real too.”

“Oh yeah?” Relieved he wasn’t claiming he’d sprouted from Satan’s cabbage patch but actually had a mother, I glanced around for this wise, all-knowing parent of his. Maybe she could tell me how to get to the conservatory. “Who’s your mom?”

“The cook,” he said, puffing up his chest as if that were the most important title in the house. “She’s worked here for fifteen years. She knows everything about this place there is to know. So…don’t go into the roses. You won’t come out alive. Lewis, the groundskeeper, doesn’t even go in there.”

Aha! So this place did have a gardener. I knew it.

I took a second to ponder why I was being sent to garden then, when Mr. Nash already paid someone to maintain the place. But if Lewis refused to go into the roses, as the kid had said, maybe it was rumored to be haunted or something, and that was where I came in. Then again, why wouldn’t Mr. Nash just hire a new groundskeeper who wasn’t so scared and superstitious? Then I stopped pondering the whys. It wasn’t my place to question strange, rich people and their strange, oddball orders. I was just here to do what I was told and save my mom.

Nodding gravely to the boy, I said, “Thanks for the warning, kid. But I think I’ll take my chances. Which way?”

He looked at me as if he’d never see me again because I was headed forth to my death, then he lifted his hand and quietly pointed toward another opening in the path of bushes.

“Thanks.” I nodded and got out of there before some of his creepiness started rubbing off.

Fortunately, he’d steered me in the right direction. I landed right at the outdoor entrance into the glass gazebo. Propping the door open, I carted my supplies inside and then paused to breathe deeply.

But fuck me, it smelled good in here. You didn’t have to be a flower enthusiast for this garden to amaze you. It was like the holy shrine of roses. A hallowed kind of reverence filled my chest. Haunted or not, I liked it. It felt peaceful and yet revitalizing.

Suddenly intimidated because I didn’t want to mess anything up in such a perfect place, my hands shook as I flipped back to the pages about rose care. The more I skimmed, however, the more confused I became.

These roses didn’t need a lick of my attention. They were all in excellent condition as if someone already tended to them. Maybe creepy kid had been wrong, and Lewis the groundskeeper came in here hourly to care for them.

Still…What the hell?

I frowned and slid my finger along the silken petals of a blood red rose. Perfectly pruned, weeded, and watered. It was as flawless as a thing could get.

But I couldn’t go tell Mr. Nash they didn’t need anything, could I? What if he fired me for lack of work to do, or because he thought I was lazy and lying about the roses not needing care?

I looked around again, searching for anything to water, or clip, or re-soil. It was crazy how thriving every single flower looked.

Maybe this was some kind of test, and Mr. Nash wanted me to fail. What if he’d never intended for me to work for him and the contract I’d signed to save my mom was being burned in the fireplace in this office as I stood here like a dumbass with nothing to weed.

Confused and worried, and growing a little angry, I scowled at a wall full of pink vine roses growing to my right. But they were honestly too pretty to be glared at, so my mood settled.

I bet Mom would love them. She was a fan of pink. And flowers. Plus, these were the good-smelling kind. I’d be a good son if I brought home such a flower to her. And it seemed as if they grew in abundance, not as if they were one of the rare breeds Mr. Nash had spoken of. So I reached for a bloom to pluck it from the vine without even thinking beyond how much it’d make my mother smile.

Behind me, a voice growled, “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”

Jumping half out of my skin because I’d been certain no one had been in here with me, I whirled around only to gasp, “Shit!”

The creepy cook’s son hadn’t been lying.

In front of me stood an irate woman with half her face melted off.


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Profile Image for Irene Sim.
693 reviews80 followers
January 24, 2018
More like 3,5 Stars.
This story presents a different take on the classic fairy-tale. It was a fun and fast read with interesting characters. I love Linda Kage's "Forbidden Men" series but this one didn't stand out as much.
Profile Image for Nadine Wilmschen.
Author 5 books91 followers
February 13, 2018
4.5 'hidden beauty' stars

To be honest, I'm not a fan of fairy tale retellings. The main reason is that I rarely (let's call it 'never') read one, which I liked.

But this is Linda Kage and since I read everything Linda writes... Here I am!

I've read the fabulous Kissing the Boss (Fairy Tale Quartet #2) (the second book in this series /out in March) last week and I'm sooo in love with the story. That book caused a major book slump.

... and so reading the first book again was the only option.

'Monster Among the Roses' is a 'Beauty and the Beast' retelling with some twists.

It's the story of Isobel (the 'monster') and Shaw (her 'savior').

Linda has managed to preserve the classical elements of the story, but has nevertheless transferred them into modern times.

This is a wonderful story about the ability to see hidden beauty, about self-growth, about risks you have to take for the people you care about and last but not least, this is a story about true love.

If you don't like fairy tale retellings that much (like me), but you like great love stories, give this series a try.

Linda Kage is my go to author (of which I have very few). I love every word this woman writes.

Profile Image for Grecia Robles.
1,452 reviews326 followers
September 3, 2018
*** 3.5 STARS ***

Tenía mucho tiempo que no leía un libro de Linda Kage y ya era hora.

Este es un retelling de La Bella y La Bestia, pero aquí es al revés la bella o el bello es él y la bestia es ella y al igual que la bestia ella es huraña, ermitaña y mal humorada que después de sufrir un accidente queda desfigurada y ya no vuelve a ser la misma lleva cautiva en la mansión de su padre 8 años, lo único que tiene es un jardín de rosas y su biblioteca con sus múltiples libros.

El padre de ella o sea Isobel quiere que vuelva a sentir que vuelva a vivir, para eso contrata a un hombre que le pide ayuda hará todo lo que él le ordene con tal de que ayude a pagar las deudas de su madre por lo que lo contrata en la mansión pero su misión es estar siempre donde esté Isobel y que le provoque no importa que sentimiento ira, diversión sólo que ella sienta.

Shaw el chico al que contratan me pareció bastante dulce tierno, demasiado bueno y un tanto inocente, a mí no me gustan este tipo de chicos pero creo que fue perfecto para Isobel que tenía una coraza de hostilidad y que él con su amabilidad, su dulzura la rompió.

Había visto muchos comentarios negativos para este libro pero a mí sí me gustó no es lo más súper wow y si tiene cosas que no me gustaron tanto como por ejemplo que ellos no actuaban conforme a la edad que tenían se supone que eran de 28 y 25 y a mí me costó imaginarlos a esa edad yo todo el libro los visualicé más chicos, pero en general estuvo bien.
Profile Image for Ceki.
375 reviews87 followers
Shelved as 'did-not-finish'
September 20, 2017

My friend recommended this book to me but she forgot to mention that the hero acts like an 18-year-old girl instead of a 28-year-old man :P
Seriously, he was blushing and gulping all the time, it was awkward and off-putting!

The author tried to write the reverse Beauty and the Beast story from the male's perspective but she failed imo.
Profile Image for Alexandra.
1,839 reviews10 followers
July 24, 2017
I received an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. Review and blog tour can be found on *Milky Way of Books*

I am a sucker for every reteliing of Beauty and the Beast! And after seeing that Linda Kage, one of my most favorite authors was writing one, I couldn't help but jump from excitement!

Shaw and Isobel were a great couple, even if they had quite a rough start. In fact, I didn't like Isobel much at first but after seeing how deep her emotional scars went, I warmed up to her.

Now Shaw on the other hand was a sweet, caring character, even funny. He loves reading and even tries to make shelves for Isobel and her library (which id the CUTEST!)

I truly enjoyed the book and I seriously can't wait for the next one, which seems to be inspired by Cinderella.
Profile Image for Marquise.
1,691 reviews294 followers
October 12, 2018
A nice 'n' fluffy little romantic retake of Beauty and the Beast in modern times. Rather clichéd if you know your romance tropes well, but entertainingly told, easy to read, and with the most adorable main male character in all my recent reads. For the latter, it gets an extra point from me.
Profile Image for Joanna.
335 reviews
June 13, 2020
Hmm, no era lo que yo esperaba y aunque me encanta sorprenderme y adentrarme en cosas nuevas, hubo algo en la historia que no terminó de convencerme.

El personaje de Shaw (el protagonista) fue fantástico, lo amé de principio a fin. Henry (el padre de la protagonista) también fue maravilloso. De ahí en fuera no creo poder nombrar más cosas que me hayan gustado, hubo una parte donde el buen corazón de Shaw me frustró, su forma de perdonar de manera tan rápida me hizo sentir mal...

Siento que faltaron cosas, o sea en algún momento sentí como si la autora no me hubiera contado todo, ay no sé🤕. Hubo muchas cosas que no terminé de comprender y no siento que tuvieran una buena explicación.

"You hear that, scars?" I told them. "I know you like to hog all the attention away from my girl here, but I gotta tell you, she's still prettier than you are ugly"

Profile Image for Alba M. .
1,545 reviews115 followers
October 21, 2018
«(...) Pensé que siempre que estuvieras triste, o dolido, o sintieras como si todo estuviera mal y feo en el mundo, podrías simplemente mirar aquí, verte a ti mismo, y saber que aún queda belleza, algo por lo que vale la pena vivir. Porque eso es lo que has hecho por mi, simplemente siendo tu. Me has hecho querer vivir de nuevo.»


Esta historia está basada en el cuento la bella y la bestia solo que en este caso es al revés: ella es la "bestia" y el es la "bella".
Por un lado tenemos a la protagonista. se llama Isobel y tiene cicatrices en parte de su cara debido a un incendio donde murió su madre. Lleva 8 años sin salir de casa más que para ir al jardín con sus rosas o a las citas del médico.
Por otro lado tenemos al protagonista se llama Shaw. Su madre le debe dinero al padre de Isobel por un préstamo que le hizo. El problema es que ahora su madre está encamada y no pueden pagarlo, así que Shaw se ofrece a hacer lo que sea para que él délos préstamos por pagados. Es así como el padre de Isobel lo contrata para que pase tiempo con ella además de ser el manitas de la casa. Solo que lo que comenzó como un trabajo terminó siendo mucho más que eso...

Empecé este libro y coincido con alguna que otra reseña que vi por ahí.
Isobel es tan gruñona y ermitaña y él es tan inocente que fue algo que me falló en la historia. Se supone que tienen 25 y 28 años respectivamente pero según lees parece que son más jóvenes por la forma de hablar y actuar, y el que él fuese tan inocente era otra cosa que me hacía reafirmar eso. Este fue uno de los puntos negativos por así decirlo y el otro fue lo rápida que va la historia al principio. Es decir acaban de conocerse y Shaw ya está medio enamorado de ella, encima después de lo mal que ella lo trató. Creo que la autora pudo extenderse un poquitín más en este sentido.
Esas son mis dos únicas razones para bajar la nota al libro. Sí, hay cosas en el libro que me hicieron enfadar más o menos pero son parte de la trama, pero en cuanto a forma de escribir y todo lo demás esos son los únicos puntos negativos.
En lo que al resto se refiere la historia es preciosa. Reconozco que la empecé dubitativa porque no sabía cómo iba a ir, esto de que los papeles fuesen al revés pero me enamoré de la historia y de los personajes. Incluso me hicieron llorar hacia el final, y se me rompió el corazón por Shaw y la mierda de familia que le tocó. 5 hermanos y como si fuese huérfano, total era lo mismo. Sentí rabia por él, y tristeza pero el final feliz me hizo sentirme mejor sabiendo que por lo menos ahora tendría alguien con él.
En cuanto a Isobel me alegro tanto de que por fin se mostrase poco a poco al mundo. Hay que ser muy valientes y esta chica se merece un aplauso.

En resumen, recomiendo este libro que es una historia preciosa y que se devora en nada. Si te gustan los retelling, este es tu libro.
Profile Image for Kate ☕.
436 reviews
July 24, 2022

The Beauty and the Beast re-telling wouldn't be so special, except Beauty = HIM and Beast= HER, that certainly is special. Hearing the roles were switched, I immediately had to read it. The fact that it's narrated from his POV only is even more attractive. I enjoyed every minute of it, and although it may sound funny - she hurting him in the end was very refreshing. 😁 I would even enjoy more grovelling on her end...

This is my first book from Linda and I liked the writing just fine, except the beginning. The Hero seemd too girly at times - his reaction to certain situations was a little strange. Later on being described as a hot muscular male was hard to believe - I expected some blushing nerdy fella, not someone like Robbie Amell, but whatever... The writing got better after that.

Profile Image for Vani.
718 reviews
November 29, 2017
Ay, miren lo que es esa portadaaaaaaaaaa!!! <3
Saben que amo todo lo que escribe Linda y no puedo ser imparcial cuando se trataba de sus libros. Así que lo único que voy a criticar es que el desenlace me pareció demasiado rápido!
Profile Image for Lucy Baldock.
464 reviews21 followers
May 29, 2018
I’m a big fan of Linda Kage’s other books but this one wasn’t quite at the level I was expecting from her. Don’t get me wrong I liked the story, especially since it was a Beauty and the Beast retelling and that is my favourite fairytale ever! This book just seemed a little dragged out in places and then rushed in others, and it just never quite peaked like I was expecting.

So first of all I want to say I really liked Shaw he was a genuinely sweet caring guy and it’s rare you read about guys like him in books. I also didn’t mind the whole book being in his POV, which is rare for me being female I connect better to female characters, he was just that likeable and funny that I was on board with it. Isobel as a character I didn’t feel as close to, I sympathised with her and liked her but there was a point in the story where she acted so childish and mean it really turned me off her. Without spoiling the story I think the whole miscommunication trope that was used actually made me annoyed at her because it seemed so stupid, she could have easily avoided a lot of what happened next and yet she was so easily forgiven by Shaw. It seemed like she didn’t really have to suffer with the consequences of her decisions. As for all the side characters they weren’t delved into enough for me, in the Beauty and the Beast tale I love the side characters are important and I grew attached to them I even had passion for hating Gaston. In this story though Kage didn’t quite pull it off for me, maybe it was because she made this retelling so different from the original tale that the characters got lost in there. I’m not sure why but other than the father, the rest of the characters seemed clear devices to move the plot forward rather than act as actual characters.

As I briefly mentioned this retelling is very different from the version of the Beauty and the Beast I love. I didn’t mind it being in a more realistic setting with no fantasy/magical elements, but I did think it would more closely follow the storyline a little more, the love of books seemed to be the only plot point that stood out. As a lot of the plot was focused on this building of the bookshelves the pace did slow down in parts of the book when I thought something more exciting could have been happening. However the ending then is the total opposite it’s completely rushed, we barely get to absorb what has happened and how all the revelations are out because it’s brushed over and dealt with so quick. It was strange considering the slow pacing of the rest of the book.

Overall I appreciated what Kage was trying to do and I liked the story it just didn’t quite meet my expectations. I’m not as connected to it as I hoped to be but I’ll still continue to read her other books.
Profile Image for Kristen Johnson.
1,167 reviews50 followers
July 24, 2017
One of my favorite things in teh book world is fairy tale retellings. Whether it's a retold version, or modernized, or some other twist on the classic - I love them. Monster Among the Roses is one of my new favorites. A retelling of sorts of Beauty and the Beast, this story delivers a role reversal within it and a bit of a twist on the classic tale, but with it delivers a powerful story.

In an effort to help his mother, Shaw goes to one of the richest men in the town, offering his servitude in any way for a repayment of loans. Thinking he's made a deal with the devil, so to speak, Shaw doesn't know what he's signed himself up for with Mr. Nash until he arrives at the Nash Mansion and promptly finds himself in the rose garden facing off with a furious woman. It's then that he discovers Mr. Nash's plans for him. But as the days pass, it becomes about so much more than a job to work off a debt, much more than serving Mr. Nash and his wishes and more about getting to know Isobel Nash more.

Isobel has been through a lot, and its left her in an odd situation, left scarred both physically and emotionally, she tends to hide amongst the books in her library or the roses in her garden. Self-concious about her scars, she tries to hide from the outside world, but he leaves her lonely, even if she doesn't want to admit it. When she stumbles upon Shaw in her garden the first time, she's furiously passionate about not wanting him around, but there's more to it than a break in the security of her solitude.

Monster Among the Roses delivers us a unique spin on the tale of Beauty and the Beast, on seeing beyond the outside and into the heart of a person. It's a journey for both Shaw and Isobel together, one that isn't always easy or typical, but one that builds a bond up overtime from friendship to something more. A beautifully romantic tale delivered with characters that pull you in and hold you captive. From Shaw's innate love and loyalty for his mother, his willingness to do whatever it took to help her out, to his desire to see Isobel happy, his good nature showed clear from the start. Isobel wasn't easy to love at first, she was harder to get to know, waiting for her to open up and share more about what made her who she is today, but once the extent of her damages was out, it was clear to see she was hurt more deeply than most saw.

I'm excited to see where Linda Kage takes us with the rest of the books in the series, seeing how she uses and alters other classic fairytales and reworks them into newly magical love stories.
Profile Image for Lisa :).
191 reviews
March 1, 2018
What a surprisingly good read. I mean, not really since it‘s a Linda Kage book but I usually don‘t read fairy tale retellings to be perfectly honest. I don’t even like fairy tales all that much (except the Disney versions). Have you ever read the Brother Grimm‘s Tales? They are fucking brutal!

Anyways, I‘m getting off topic here :D

Linda Kage did an exceptionally good job with the retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

Shaw is such a wonderful hero. He is sweet, patient, and kind. The world would be a better place if there were more people like him. He may not be perfect but he is an all around good guy. He doesn’t have a mean bone in his and refuses to think ill of people. The way he treats not only Izzie but other people as well is truly inspiring.

„The Monster Among the Roses“ is a beautiful story about the power of true love and even more about finding your own strength and inner beauty.

I loved every word Linda Kage has written in this book and I gotta say she came a long way compared to her earlier books.

I am sucker for the Happy Ever After Epilogue though so I would have liked to see a picture of them farther into the future and not just a couple of month.
Profile Image for Vivi.
403 reviews31 followers
February 14, 2020
4 stars!

This was a pretty cute and sweet retelling of The Beauty and the Beast .

Except here our Beauty is 28 year-old Shaw and the Beast is 25 year-old Isobel.

I enjoyed how different this was from the original fairytale and how well written it was. The romance was sweet and true... And I liked the characters here.

This book was fun to read and the ending definitely left me curious about the next book of the series - Kissing the Boss - about Ezra (Isobel's brother) and based on Cinderella. So, I might pick that book up to read soon.
Profile Image for Cindy.
2,230 reviews134 followers
July 29, 2017
A timeless fairy tale re-imagined to modern day and the role's reversed but still a great heart touching love story. LOVED it!!


Profile Image for Shelby (BookLoversHaveMoreFun).
1,207 reviews35 followers
July 31, 2017
Linda Kage has ALWAYS been one of my FAVORITE authors, so when I found out she was doing a Fairy Tale Series... I. Freaked. Out. And then the first one was based off Beauty and the Beast?! I bet you can imagine my excitement. ;)

Monster Among the Roses was a very realistic and beautiful retelling of a modern Beauty and the Beast. I REALLY liked the gender reversal for the two main characters. I loved whenever there was anything even remotely related to the classic fairy tale. Shaw became one of the most LOVABLE of Linda's characters. It seemed like everyone was unable to resist his charms.

I believe the next book will be a retelling of Cinderella. I'm VERY anxious for that one, AND to find out what the rest of the books will be based on.
Profile Image for Emily (Mrs B's Books).
1,525 reviews83 followers
February 10, 2018
**My thanks to the author for providing me with a free copy for an honest review**

This is a re-telling of the story of Beauty and the Beast, but with a role reversal. The beast Isobel, a woman scared by fired and who has isolated herself from the world. Shaw is our beauty and the story is told from his point of view.

Shaw has a wonderful, yet very soft heart and it is with that he gets Isobel to open up to him and to do things out of her structured day.

I was crying at a few points in the book as poor Shaw does seem to get a bum deal, especially with his family, however after a misunderstanding with the Nash family, especially Isobel our fated lovers find their way back to each other, especially as Shaws soft heart cannot not forgive the woman he loves.

I read this book in just one day as i found it captivating.
Profile Image for ★ Belle The Bibliophile ★.
876 reviews243 followers
Shelved as 'not-interested-anymore'
July 27, 2017
I was so excited to read this one because I love my twisted fairytale retellings. I've also been searching for Beauty and the Beast retellings where the Beauty isn't a "beauty."

That's why I'm so mad that this book is written in Hero's POV because now I can't read it!!! So disappointed :( I think it would have been a lot more interesting had the book be written in the heroine's POV to be honest.

But anyway, I'm still looking forward for other releases from this author! 💗
Profile Image for Melisa.
293 reviews
October 10, 2018
Hermoso libro.
Si bien es un remake del cuento infantil "La bella y la bestia" me gustó mucho que la autora haya intercambiado los géneros de los protagonistas.
Me quedo con las ganas de leer la historia de Ezra.
Unas sólidas 5 estrellas
Profile Image for Anne Z..
554 reviews33 followers
February 9, 2018
For reviews and links to book/author please visit my blog Glimpses of Me and Instagram

This was so so so good! It delivered in every possible way.

"I trust you with my heart. Giving you the truth was easy"

It is hard to find well written retellings for adults, young adults? yah... there are tons. New Adult/Adult not so much. Even less retellings not involving fantasy and magic. THIS however, THIS was pure perfection. I loved every single thing about it!

Here is the blurb for you sunnies:

“Do you know how to get to the rose garden?”
“No, you can’t go there. A monster lives there.”

Shaw Hollander is desperate.
Broke, unemployed, and determined to help his ailing mother, he falls on the good graces of a wealthy benefactor who is willing to give Shaw a job at his mansion in order to pay off his mother’s debts. Suddenly finding himself surrounded by lavish riches, he has no idea what his duties truly entail until he’s sent to the rose garden and meets the tragically mutilated Isobel.

This Beauty and the Beast story holds true to the core of the fable while shaking off the element of fantasy and dragging it into present-day reality. Shaw and Isobel are ready to let you climb into their four-wheel-drive pickup and take a ride with them into their version of happily ever after, but only if you first dare to gaze upon the monster among the roses.

WOW! I feel I must say that again!
Monster Among the Roses was an extremely sweet and touching romance read. My e-book is highlighted from beginning to end. I mean, why highlight quotes when whole paragraphs melt your heart?

First we have Shaw. Goodness the boy is perfection...he has a heart of gold and I dare you not to love him. His mother is sick and bankrupt and he is willing to do anything -and I really mean anything- to fix their situation. He goes to the richest man he can think of, Henry Nash, and begs for help and forgiveness for his mother's debts. His determination and love for his mother were heart warming. His interaction with the other employees in the house and his banter and friendship with Isobel made for an entertaining, uplifting and moving story.

Henry Nash is a rich man, needs nothing. But his daughter does. So when the young good looking Shaw walks in hi office he has an idea. I liked his character, his love and care for his daughter are admirable.

Isobel has part of her face disfigured. She has been hiding indoors for years and is lonely. Shaw slowly but surely breaks her hard shell, teaches her to love and to live again. They do things together, get to know each other, lough, cry... she eventually stops hiding her scared face from him and learns to trust him.

It wouldn't be a good romance novel without some bumps in the road, so there were a few. Tear worthy few... you might want to have a box of tissues nearby!

"You hear that, scars?" I told them. "I know you like to hog all the attention away from my girl here, but I gotta tell you, she's still prettier than you are ugly"
*I swoon*
Profile Image for Micheala.
903 reviews73 followers
August 19, 2017
3.5 stars

I didn't like this nearly as much as I thought nor hoped. I love Linda Kage's Forbidden Men series and when I found out she was writing a new one involving fairytale retellings I was thrilled. But his book almost didn't seem like her writing.

The story itself was great, which is why for website reasons I bumped this to a 4 star. It was a cute fairytale retelling and more so, switched the genders. The female was the "beast" and male the one "stuck" in the mansion. The "beast" being a girl who survived a fire that killed her mom, leaving her with half her face and upper body burnt. Sounds great and very realistic.

Going into this, I assumed NA. Just the type of story that's built up. If their ages of 28 and 24..25? something like that were not stated, I would have read this thinking it was only a YA. The book does not read like an adult book. The romance that was created here seemed very juvenile. The story is told from the male MC, Shaw's POV and it doesn't read like it's a 28 year old male. i read it as a 17 year old female. It's hard to read as a result. The attraction he has for her is cute and sweet and usually I'd say it's a nice change for the age of the POV but it just didn't fit. He sounded too young to me and the story was thrown off. His attraction was juvenile.

Thankfully the sex scene was more adult-ish. No fade to black but also no deep descriptions. Terminology was used that refers to adults.

Isobel didn't help things either. She sounded and acted like a teenager. The way she was with him and the general way of her voice didn't seem adult-like at all.

For all these reasons it's a 3. 3.5 because of the good story. Officially 4 because the story was cute.

While I love Linda Kage's novels and writing, this almost seems like it was written by someone else. It didn't hold the same flow for me. The story itself was great, but the characters bugged me the whole way through.
Profile Image for Selma.
485 reviews80 followers
July 26, 2017
Beauty and the Beast has always been my favorite fairytale. I've read several contemporary romance books inspired by this theme. In this version by Linda Kage the beast is a she and the beauty is a he. That alone was the reason why I couldn't wait to get my grabby hands on this book. There is something so heartwarming about the message that beauty lies in the eye of the beholder. It never gets to old to remind people that physical appearances can sometimes be deceiving. I knew that Linda is going to deliver a touching story that will heavily tear at my heartstrings but eventually leave me in a happy place. Oh how I've missed her poignant writing and captivating storytelling.

Down on his luck Shaw Hollander doesn't have it easy. He is unemployed, broke and struggling to help his ailing mother whose bakery recently went out of business. The bills are piling up and there is no end in sight. In his despair Shaw approaches a wealthy businessman and offers his services in order to pay of his mother's debt. Mr. Nash takes pity on him and offers him a position as a handyman on his large mansion. Shaw didn't realise what his duties may entail until he is sent to the rose garden and meets his boss' daughter. Isobel is mutilated from a fire and leading a very secluded life since her accident. Although her reaction to him is rather rude and not welcoming at all, Shaw will find himself intrigued by Izzy.
Very soon he will realise that who is hiding among the roses is not a monster but a beauty that needs to be awakened.

Shaw was the perfect fairytale hero. He was absolutely swoonworthy. Everything this man did made my heart beat faster. He was kind, considerate, sincere and a little too humble for his own good. Shaw was a hard worker and dutyful son. I loved the way he treated Isobel and how he managed to lure her out of her hiding place bringing happiness into her life.

Isobel first appeared to be very bitter and rude but deep down she is a wonderful person. She tended her rose garden with so much love - her pride and joy. She was also an avid reader like Shaw which made them bond over books they both liked. I loved it that despite her upbringing Izzy was down to earth and never saw Shaw as unworthy of her love and affection.

The end of this story will put a huge smile on your face and you are going to clutch your kindle to your heart and sigh with contentment. I've devoured this amazing story within just a few hours and enjoyed every minute of it. I can't wait for the next installment in the Fairy Tale Quartet.
Profile Image for Cristina (My Tiny Obsessions).
470 reviews98 followers
February 28, 2018
Read full review HERE


Linda Kage has been an author I’ve loved since starting the Forbidden Men series. So, when she asked me if I wanted to review her new series, I jumped at the opportunity.

What I wasn’t expecting was to love this book as much as I did. Monster Among the Roses took my breath away, and I loved it to bits.

First of all, the writing is amazing! This book is told exclusively through Shaw’s POV, and it’s so rare to have a book told only through the guy’s point of view, and I absolutely loved it!

Shaw was such an unique character. He was such a good person, with a golden heart, I just wanted him to be happy and safe forever and ever. Isobel went through so much, and even though it hurt when she doubted Shaw and when she was cold and standoffish, I understood her completely, and I couldn’t really fault her, given everything that had happened in her life.

I thought this was such a cool twist on the Beauty and the Beast story. With a simple gender swap, it changed the dynamic completely.

I also really liked the romance, because Shaw and Isobel complemented each other quite well. With that said, the romance did develop rather quickly, and I wished there had been a bit more build up to their budding relationship. They fall in love rather fast, and while I loved their banter and their connection, I still thought it should have taken place throughout more time, so we could experience their feelings more fully.

The fall out was heartbreaking, my heart went out for Shaw. He was suffering so much, and I was kind of hating Isobel there for a second, even though I understood her, I still wanted to slap her for hurting my baby.

Profile Image for diana marcela Ballestas.
450 reviews50 followers
October 30, 2019
Esta historia es un retelling de la bella y la bestia de una manera muy particular, el bello y la bestia. He de admitir que fue una novedad leer un libro de romance (que no fuera M&M) narrado enteramente desde el POV masculino y definitivamente fue algo diferente, aunque algunos aspectos de la personalidad del personaje se asemejaran a la visión de una mujer. La historia es amena y fácil de leer pero bastante predecible.
Profile Image for Laura M..
542 reviews
November 5, 2017
Desde que Linda anuncio esta serie, me enamoro la idea que fuesen basados en cuentos de hadas pero desde el punto de vista masculino, todo invertido y que cosa tan genial salió. En esta creo que es fácil determinar que es sobre la Bella y La Bestia. Claro acá todo es distinto, los detalles no son exactamente igual, es algo mas moderno pero con ese toque en los detalles que creo que cuido muy bien y ame todo. Hay algo bien particular, durante la historia presten detalle en donde menciona unas pinturas y frases, creo que eso nos adelanta algo. Ah y nos adelanta algo de }l segundo libro y ya estoy super emocionada. No digo mas porque siento que contaría demasiado spolier y por favor no juzguen en si se parece mucho o no a la original, es basado, no identico.
Profile Image for Easy Reads.
34 reviews3 followers
July 14, 2022
To help his sick mother with her debts, Shaw (H) accepts a job as a handyman at a wealthy man's mansion. He does not know that his job in fact is to be an eye candy for the man's daughter (h) who is physically and emotionally scarred and never leaves the mansion premises.

Not sure if it was really that good, or it was just exactly what I needed after a long series of alpha-holes.

A heart-warming contemporary retelling of Beauty and the Beast where SHE is the Beast and HE is the sweetest and kindest (and a bit unrealistic) male hero ever.

I really liked that the story is told from the male point of view.

Story: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Audio: 💙💙💙💙💙
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