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Book Review of Beauty Reborn by Elizabeth Lowham
While my husband and I were in San Pedro, Belize for our 25th wedding anniversary, I read six books! It was amazing! Reading on the beach with my feet in the sand is my absolute favorite. Too bad I live very far from the beach. In fact, it was snowing at my house while we were gone. The second book I read while we were there was Beauty Reborn by Elizabeth Lowham.
Fantasy and reality collide in this retelling of “Beauty and the Beast” about a young woman’s heroic quest to save herself.
Beauty’s life is the stuff of fairy tales. The youngest in her family, Beauty isn’t trying to catch Stephan’s eye. He is the lord baron’s heir, well above her family’s modest station, but when he kisses her hand at a party, Beauty is swept away by his charm, his wit, and his passionate declarations of love.
Hearts can be untamable creatures, especially when touched by the fires of first love, and Beauty doesn’t see the truth of Stephan’s intentions until it is too late. Until he stops asking for Beauty’s love—and simply takes it from her one night despite her refusal.
Beauty locks away the secret of what happened to her, and when her father emerges from the enchanted forest with a stolen rose in his hand and the tale of a vicious beast on his breath, Beauty seizes the chance to run as far from Stephan as possible.
She has some experience with beasts, after all. Certainly the one in the forest couldn’t be any worse than the one she’s already encountered.
Breaking the Beast’s curse might be the key to discovering her own path to healing—and finding the courage to allow herself to feel reborn.
My Book Review:
Beauty and the Beast has always been one of my favorite stories. First, I LOVE the Beast’s library!! Yes, I may have a little library envy going on. Second, I love how Beauty is able to see past the Beast’s rough appearance and grumpy attitude and find his kindness and caring heart underneath. I love how it’s a subtle change at first, neither of them noticing. We need a little more of that today! We need to be able to see past rough appearances and attitudes and see the good in people.
Anyway, this retelling of Beauty and the Beast has a bit of a different element to it than most of the versions do. In this story, Beauty thinks she has found her prince. Then, the prince turns into a beast. I won’t spoil it for you, but let’s just say this so-called man does something very evil.
Beauty doesn’t tell anyone what happened. Later, when her father comes out of the forest with a tale of an enchanted castle and a terrible beast, she sees a chance to run. She takes it.
This book is well written. It is so full of emotion! The characters are well developed, unique, authentic, and real. The descriptions of the forest, castle, and library are so great. I loved seeing the growth of the characters as the story progressed. The relationship between Beauty and Beast is one of my favorites! I loved it so much!
Another thing I loved was seeing the events through the different characters’ viewpoints. Beauty’s dad seems like such a great father. He’s not perfect, but his reaction to everything that happened was perfect. As parents it’s easy to be a “first reactor” and freak out, but it’s more important to be a “first responder” and show love, compassion, and empathy for what our children experience.
I liked the writing style of Beauty Reborn. You can just feel the magic and enchantments through Ms. Lowham’s words. Even though difficult events happen, you can feel the hope that things will get better. Ms. Lowhan also did a good job crafting the terrible events. You know what happens and you can feel the intense emotions, but it isn’t overly graphic.
Oftentimes books are a good way to learn about and process events in our lives. I’ve used books with my children and school classes to teach different values and principles. Seeing a character go through something similar to what you’ve gone through helps you to see the situation through a different lens. In my opinion, it helps you to process the event along with the emotions and feelings involved. You’re able to heal as the character heals.
I feel like this book will help women who have been in similar situations to what Beauty goes through. Even though I have never been in that situation, a few of my friends have been. I feel like it helps me to be a better support person to understand what the victims go through and the emotions they feel.
Content Rating: PG-13+
- Profanity: Minimal (A couple of words.)
- Intimacy: Extensive (A character is raped. It is not described in overly graphic detail, but it is traumatic for the character, and you know it occurs.)
- Violence: Moderate (See intimacy note.)
Age Recommendation: 16 yrs old and up
My Rating: 4/5
Disclosure: I did receive a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.