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Of Curses and Kisses

(St. Rosetta's Academy #1)

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  6,375 ratings  ·  1,584 reviews
The first novel in a series set at an elite international boarding school, that’s a contemporary spin on Beauty and the Beast.

Will the princess save the beast?

For Princess Jaya Rao, nothing is more important than family. When the loathsome Emerson clan steps up their centuries-old feud to target Jaya’s little sister, nothing will keep Jaya from exacting her revenge. Then J
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published February 18th 2020 by Simon Pulse
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Sandhya Menon No, it's contemporary! But it's got "is it magic or isn't it" vibes that were so much fun to write. :)…moreNo, it's contemporary! But it's got "is it magic or isn't it" vibes that were so much fun to write. :)(less)
Sandhya Menon Thanks for asking, Rhianna! Yes, this has both Jaya's and Grey's POV. :)

Thanks for asking, Rhianna! Yes, this has both Jaya's and Grey's POV. :)


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Average rating 3.47  · 
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 ·  6,375 ratings  ·  1,584 reviews

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1.5/5 ⭐

DNF-ed it at 32% because it was pointless

I tried to give it a chance, I didn't want to put an end on it like that, but the whole action was not going anywhere so I had to end it. I was struggling with it like a fish struggles to find water on Mercury.

I didn't want to award this the honourable 1-star because that pretty little star is reserved only for the morally-outrageous, bland-as-all-bloody-hell, terribly-unliterary-written, super-offensive books so that's why I pushed that half star
Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)
i had to look up "misanthrope"

according to google, a misanthrope is "a person who dislikes humankind and avoids human society."

honestly, who here can honestly say this doesn't describe them on monday mornings before coffee

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Chelsea Humphrey
Honestly, this was such a breath of fresh air. I'm a simple girl; if you use phrases like "elite boarding school" and "contemporary spin on Beauty and the Beast", I'm here for it. Of Curses and Kisses is a retelling that stays fairly true to its origin material, and the soft romantic vibes worked really well for me. I thought the way that the curse is woven into the narrative is clever, and while I know some readers have stated that this was a book that was easy to put down at times, that's prec ...more
Jun 13, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Womp....Womp.... 😬.... this was so incredibly boring to me. I just wanna say, I love YA. I’m also a sucker for these cutesy illustrated covers. Reading the synopsis, I had high hopes that this would be a great read for me. I couldn’t care less about any character. I don’t think there was enough time/effort developing these characters into someone you’d actually like and/or root for. I did like the ending, I’ll give a star for that. But honestly this is not one I’ll be recommending to my book pal ...more
Ashley Nuckles
Feb 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was pretty slow going at first and there was a lot of backstory to uncover right in the beginning, but this was soooooooo CUTE omg I love
Jananie (thisstoryaintover)
I really wanted to love this but it honestly wasn't my favourite of Sandhya Menon's books and really struggled to finish it. While the premise was super intriguing I felt like I wanted something completely different out of the execution. Still a cute romance and recommend if you wanted a light hearted read! ...more
Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)
I think this is a me thing? I don't think there is anything necessarily bad about Of Curses and Kisses, there just isn't anything new about it either. I think plenty of people who love retellings will enjoy this one, and I would have loved it when I was in high school, but I just didn't feel involved at all with this story as I read it.

Jaya is a nice main character, I'm sure lots of bookish people will love her as our Belle character, and Grey is.... sure a brooding white boy, which isn't my ty
Fadwa (Word Wonders)
I received an ARC of this book in exchange of an honest review

CW: emotionally abusive parent, parental neglect, blackmail, leaking of personal information

I'm not gonna lie, I went into this a bit skeptical, not because of anything the book or the author did bur I've just been let down by YA contemporary a lot recently, so I wanted to keep my hopes at low levels just in case. But I ended up genuinely LOVING it? It took me a few chapters to get into and to get used to the MC's voice (which was in
Adi Rocks Socks
4.5 stars

And how amazing would it feel, to set this burden down, just for a few moments? To share it with someone else for a bit? How sweet would the relief taste, if he were able to share this shameful, dark secret that had plagued him since he was born?

Of Curses And Kisses was a book that I desperately wanted to read ever since I learnt of its existence in August 2019. There were three main reasons why I wanted to read this book.

A. A Beauty and The Beast retelling with an Indian MC. I’m
This was really good book by Sandhya something different and I enjoyed it. This is a first book in a contemporary trilogy, and it's also a beauty and the beast retelling and even though I read a lot of those over the years I still loved it! RTC in the morning!
1) Of curses and kisses 3.5/5 stars
A buddy read I did with my friend Libby!(:
Jan 26, 2020 rated it liked it
The ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Full review HERE

I'm very sorry to say that I didn't enjoy this book as much as I thought I was going to.
I quite liked how the theme of Beauty and the Beast was taken and woven into the storyline, you can definitely see its elements in the novel.

I appreciated how the story was told from the points of view of Jaya and Grey, so that we got both of their perspectives. Grey was the character I liked
Feb 03, 2020 rated it liked it
I love a good Beauty and the Beast retelling, so when I saw that this was one that took place in a boarding school, I was definitely going to pick it up.

When this book started, I was enjoying the story. I loved how Jaya was so protective of her younger sister and how she was trying to get close to Grey so that she could get revenge for what he did to her sister. The whole boarding school setting was fun and I liked how Jaya was everywhere so that Grey couldn't help but get to know her. The anim
Joshee Kun (조수아)
Thank you, Simon & Schuster, for giving me an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review

She couldn't make this boy fall in love with her. She couldn't break his heart. Because if she did, it was her, not him, who was the beast.

I'm frustrated that my first review of 2020 will be a bit of a rant. I requested this book from the publisher because I hadn't read a contemporary retelling of Beauty and the Beast. The boarding school setup was also appealing, so I had high expectations. Sadly, my
Dec 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
⭐4 adorable stars ⭐

Just the romance I needed.

This was so fun and I absolutely loved Grey Emerson!😍

A retelling of beauty and the beast in contemporary.

I seriously needed such a reading, a book of this genre that I could not stop reading and enjoy so much.
I’m 1000% here for anything Sandhya writes and it breaks my heart that I won’t be gushing over this story.

I liked Jaya and Grey. She’s a bit uptight, he’s quite stand off-ish, and they’re both good people with a lot of potential. I thought Jaya’s sister Isha was delightful and I hope we get to see more of her. There are a good amount of secondary characters and some of them did feel flat.

Plot wise, it was just okay. There’s loads of inner monologue and since I thrive of dialogue, it became a b
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Nov 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
One of my absolute favorite fairy tales is Beauty and the Beast and so, I might be more picky about re-tellings because, it really is such a classic. And even though I can be picky and maybe even a bit harsh sometimes in what I do and don't like when it comes to those that mess with such an amazing classical tale, I have to say, I still pick them up and read them like they are candy.

Of Curses and Kisses was no exception. Combine and classic retelling of my absolute favorite fairy tale and an aut
Feb 05, 2020 rated it did not like it
i feel really bad giving this book 1 star,but i have to be honest with myself.the only thing about it that i like was the setting-elite boarding school and thats about it.i had no idea that this was a Beauty & The Beast retelling,but i have bad luck with those(*cough* a curse so dark and lonely *cough*) The main character Jaya was so judgmental and honestly i have not hated a female MC that much in a long time.Our male character Grey (YES GREY come on..) was miserable all the time and “feral” .. ...more
Leah Waters
Another light-hearted, cute story from Sandhya Menon!

This was a super fun retelling of Beauty and the Beast, with enough parallels to stick to the original fairy tale, but also enough changes that it was a unique story unlike any other I've read.

I love how different Jaya and Grey are, and their development is incredible, and yet their relationship worked. They had the strangest kind of chemistry, a kind I never expected, and it was so, so sweet.

There are underlying hints of a curse throughout t
Jun 16, 2021 rated it really liked it
I always had a secret knack for Fairy tales, didn’t know why. Maybe because I believe in magic (of course I’m still a kid at heart😉).
Moving on to the story, it is a contemporary spin on the tale ‘Beauty and the Beast’, taking place in an international boarding school for the elite.

So! For the spin of the classic tale, Beauty and the Beast, what are the ingredients needed? 🤔
Firstly we would be needing a Beauty, in the sense, here was a Princess, who is a hell-bent classic rule follower. She was t
Jun 13, 2020 rated it liked it
This book started off really good but then it just,,,, went downhill. It's good but it could totally have been better. ...more
Brooke — brooklynnnnereads
There are so many "Beauty and the Beast" retellings out there. As a fan of the original story along with the various retellings, I LOVE that there are so many. However, with such a saturated market, it makes for some steep competition. There are some great retellings and there are some not so great retellings out there and for me, this novel lays somewhere in the middle.

I wish that I truly got captivated and enchanted by this story but unfortunately I didn't. For the majority of the book, the s
Jan 05, 2020 rated it liked it
On the one hand, I enjoyed the Beauty and the Beast-inspired details woven into this story. I also enjoyed what we get of the secondary characters (who might get their own books), and I did like Grey a lot (but that’s just my usual bias towards solitary, grumpy, good-hearted guys.

On the other hand, Jaya made me constantly want to shake her and give her a good talking-to all the time. Her choices and behavior throughout the story were personally frustrating, even though it fit in with her age and
Laura ☾
Aug 13, 2020 rated it did not like it
I don't really get how this is a beauty and the beast retelling? Beyond a curse, I didn't really get the resemblance, so that kind of ruined it for me.

This is definitely aimed at a rather young (maybe 12/13) year old audience who would be primarily American - I just don't fit that profile and found this just horribly immature.

The characters weren't particularly likable to me, and the writing itself left a lot to be desired.

Everything was way too cheesy and melodramatic (view spoiler)
Megha Patel
Feb 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Has there ever been a book written by Sandhya Menon that I haven't loved? The answer is always no. There's just something about her style that makes me fall in love. Her books are always so sweet and full of love. And Of Curses and Kisses was no less.

I love a good fairytale retelling and I was not disappointed at all. The story line is obviously inspired from Beauty and the Beast but I really liked the royal family and the school element. The characters were all great too. Our main characters,
Feb 24, 2020 rated it it was ok
that was 9 hrs of my life wasted
I was gonna read this ARC closer to the release date or atleast till I was able to buddy read it with my friends, who are all part of Sandhya’s street team. But I found myself feeling a little sad on my birthday and decided what better way to cheer myself than picking up Sandhya’s book. And that’s exactly what happened.

This is a contemporary retelling of Beauty and the Beast and while I don’t remember much about the original except Emma Watson’s movie, this book definitely had that fairytale fe
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Fresh, uplifting, and magical!

Of Curses and Kisses is an engaging, heartwarming tale that transports you to the international boarding school, St. Rosetta’s Academy in Aspen, Colorado and into the lives of Princess Jaya Rao, a young, Indian senior determined to seek revenge on the Emmerson heir who seems to constantly wreak havoc on her family, and Emmerson Grey, a brooding, reclusive, young man who lives his days under the shadow of a curse placed on his family generations previously.

The writin
Lisa (Remarkablylisa)
Jan 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: asian-books
I received an ARC from Simon Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review.

What an absolute delight! This book was the first of many books that really gripped me, pulling me into the intricate world of Princess Jaya and Grey Emerson, two characters fated to hate each other because of a century old fight. After learning from resources that Grey was responsible for Princess Jaya’s little sister’s slander in the media, she enrolls herself into Grey’s private boarding school in hopes of making hi
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. This in no way impacted on my view.

This book, I mean, was just simply amazing. As soon as I heard that Hodder would be publishing this book in the UK, I quite cheekily emailed and asked for a copy, and ended up first on the list. Waiting for the copy to arrive was a bit of a struggle, but when I got home on the Friday before Christmas, having broken up from work for the holidays and free to read as much as I wanted without feeling guilty, my
Kathy - Books & Munches
AD - eARC gifted through NetGalley by publisher

Two points of view and they couldn't be more different. It's also easy to admit I didn't like one of them, at all and.. of course it has to be Jaya's. So.. I'll ignore her for a bit and dive into Grey! His darkness and broodiness were things I immediately fell for - as I always do whenever a character with those traits swaggers by.
I think the biggest thing here was how he reminded me a lot of my past self. I also grew up believing what my father to
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Sandhya Menon is the New York Times bestselling author of several novels with lots of kissing, girl power, and swoony boys. Her books have been featured in several cool places, including on The Today Show, Teen Vogue, NPR Book Review, Buzzfeed, and Seventeen. A full-time dog servant and part-time writer, she makes her home in the foggy mountains of Colorado.

Other books in the series

St. Rosetta's Academy (3 books)
  • Of Princes and Promises (St. Rosetta's Academy, #2)
  • Untitled (St. Rosetta's Academy, #3)

Articles featuring this book

This May, as we celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we wanted to take an opportunity to shine a light on some of the...
261 likes · 46 comments
“Love? Does love make you feel ill, like you’re being tossed about on a stormy sea? Does it steal your sleep and make you feel like your insides are on fire?” 4 likes
“Kiran was one of those guys who thought Jaya’s X chromosome stood for “xplain things to me.” 3 likes
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