4 stars · young adult

Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay

Of Beast and Beauty

author : stacey jay

pages : [hardcover] 391

memorable quote And what good is a voice when so few will listen?

favorite characters : isra & gem

summary :

In the beginning was the darkness, and in the darkness was a girl, and in the girl was a secret…

In the domed city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra, a Smooth Skin, is raised to be a human sacrifice whose death will ensure her city’s vitality. In the desert outside Yuan, Gem, a mutant beast, fights to save his people, the Monstrous, from starvation. Neither dreams that together, they could return balance to both their worlds.

Isra wants to help the city’s Banished people, second-class citizens despised for possessing Monstrous traits. But after she enlists the aid of her prisoner, Gem, who has been captured while trying to steal Yuan’s enchanted roses, she begins to care for him, and to question everything she has been brought up to believe.

As secrets are revealed and Isra’s sight, which vanished during her childhood, returned, Isra will have to choose between duty to her people and the beast she has come to love.

review :

I love twisted fairy tales and I was really interested in this one because it also had dystopian elements and took place on another planet! The fairy tale qualities of the story actually ended up blending with the sci-fi in an interesting mixture I never would have guessed would hook me in. There were so many things going on with this plot that it became anything but a predictable fairy tale.

First of all, the summary says that Isra’s city treats the Banished as ‘second-class’. That’s an understatement when they’re all rounded up and shoved into a camp at the edge of the dome and treated like animals-and much worse than animals should ever be treated-for the rest of their short lives. If that’s what they do to their so-called citizens then it’s easy to imagine the terrible things they might do to the Monstrous outside the dome who are trying to get in. The Monstrous are starving and desperate, looking for answers that will help them survive. Isra needs to find out what are lies and what is true about these creatures before its too late and both sides destroy each other.

I have to say the creepiest part of this story was that Isra was raised to be a human sacrifice. Knowing what kept their city going to me was a lot worse than much of the bloodshed and fighting that went on throughout the novel. It isn’t the forefront during most of the plot but it affects everything Isra is and everything she does. Another creepy element was Bo. At first I was afraid he’d turn things into a love triangle but no, that guy really had a twisted mind.

There were some plot twists in here that I never really expected and as the novel progressed, I just had to keep reading because I never knew what could happen next. Both of them characters were so well-written and at the end I still had no answer as to who was supposed to be Beauty and who was the Beast. Both had good and bad traits and it wasn’t all about appearances.

I really enjoyed this book and it surprised me in so many ways. It’s a quick and memorable read that I’ll recommend to anybody.

4/5 stars

5 stars · classic · Fantasy · fiction · romance · young adult

A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn


A Kiss in Time

Author: Alex Flinn [also wrote Beastly]

Pages [paperback]: 371

Memorable Quote: “Parents always forgive you. Like sometimes, you see parents on the news, and their kid just got busted for murdering a 7-11 clerk, and they’re like, ‘But my Bubba’s a good boy. He’d never hurt a fly.’ So I’m sure your parents would forgive you for whatever you did.”

Favorite Characters: Talia & Jack

Available now


Talia fell under a spell. . . .
Jack broke the curse.

I was told to beware the accursed spindle, but it was so enchanting, so hypnotic. . . .

I was looking for a little adventure the day I ditched my tour group. But finding a comatose town, with a hot-looking chick asleep in it, was so not what I had in mind.

I awakened in the same place but in another time—to a stranger’s soft kiss.

I couldn’t help kissing her. Sometimes you just have to kiss someone. I didn’t know this would happen.

Now I am in dire trouble because my father, the king, says I have brought ruin upon our country. I have no choice but to run away with this commoner!

Now I’m stuck with a bratty princess and a trunk full of her jewels. . . . The good news: My parents will freak!

Think you have dating issues? Try locking lips with a snoozing stunner who turns out to be 316 years old. Can a kiss transcend all—even time?


Alex Flinn’s Beastly is what really got me interested in modernized fairy tales, so I was happy to find another retold classic by her; this time focusing on Sleeping Beauty. Which also happens to be my favorite princess story.

When first reading, I was afraid I’d be annoyed by the alternating narrators, Talia and Jack. They’re both completely full of themselves and snobbish to the extreme. I knew they were written that way purposefully, but sometimes that sort of character just isn’t enjoyable for me. But I got over that fear within a few chapters, because having Talia experience the modern world was completely hilarious. Everything went wonderfully from then on.

I really loved how the evil presence was introduced in this book-Malvolia, the witch that cast the spell on Talia that made her sleep for three hundred years. She didn’t give up on revenge after Jack’s kiss broke the spell, which I liked because it made sense as well as made the plot more interesting.

I’m definitely going to have to check out Cloaked, another fractured fairy tale penned by Alex Flinn. I have a feeling I’ll eventually read everything by her. She’s a wonderfully creative, fresh, and funny author.

I give A Kiss in Time 5/5 stars. I love this new take on Sleeping Beauty!

classic · Fantasy · fiction · romance · science fiction · young adult

Beastly by Alex Flinn


Author: Alex Flinn

Pages [harcover]: 304

Available now!

Opening Lines: I could feel everyone looking at me, but I was used to it. One thing my dad taught me early and often was to act like nothing moved me. When you’re special, like we were, people were bound to notice.

Memorable Quote: Every girl pretends she is a princess at one point, no matter how little her life is like that.


I am a beast. A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dog, but a horrible new creature who walks upright – a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a monster.

You think I’m talking fairy tales? No way. The place is New York City. The time is now. It’s no deformity, no disease. And I’ll stay this way forever – ruined – unless I can break the spell.

Yes, the spell, the one the witch in my English class cast on me. Why did she turn me into a beast who hides by day and prowls by night? I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you how I used to be Kyle Kingsbury, the guy you wished you were, with money, perfect looks, and a perfect life. And then, I’ll tell you how I became perfectly beastly.


I’ve been wanting to read this ever since I heard that a movie based on this book is going to be released soon. I’m not entirely sure of the exact date, but it has Alex Pettyfer in it, and that’s the only reason I was interested. Now that I’ve read the book and actually know the plot, I really want to see it!

 Anyway. When Beastly starts out, the main character, Kyle Kingsbury, is truly beastly. I can see why he gets a spell put on him. The whole book is beautifully modernized-from the ‘castle’, to the roses, to every detail I’ve loved since I saw the Disney movie version. There wasn’t a single moment that I thought didn’t fit in.

This book was funny and fast-paced. I read it in two days, and it constantly had me wanting to read more. The characters are so vivid and everything is portrayed perfectly.

I also like how, in my edition, there are other similar ‘twisted fairytales’ listed for those who want to read more books like this one. Very thoughtful, because I find it hard to locate novels like this.

Beastly is a fun, modern spin on an old classic. I give it 5/5 stars and highly recommend it!