New York Times bestselling author Meagan Spooner spins a thoroughly thrilling Beauty and the Beast story for the modern age, expertly woven with spellbinding romance, intrigue, and suspense that readers won’t soon be able to forget.
Beauty knows the Beast's forest in her bones—and in her blood. After all, her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering its secrets.
So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters out of their comfortable home among the aristocracy and back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronessas…or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman.
But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one prey: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance. The Beast.
Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange creature back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of magical creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin, or salvation.
Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?
In this standalone tale from Spooner, coauthor of the Starbound trilogy, a merchant named Tvertko loses his fortune and moves his daughters Lena, Asenka, and Yeva to a remote cabin. Once a legendary hunter, Tvertko has difficulty finding prey and comes to believe that a fearsome Beast is scaring off the other animals. Tvertko ventures into the woods to slay the creature but fails to return. Yeva strikes out after him and is captured by the Beast, who imprisons her in a castle. As Yeva fights for survival and escape, she learns that the fairy tales of her youth are more grounded in reality than she ever imagined. After a slow start, Spooner's take on Beauty and the Beast finds its groove when Yeva (also known as Beauty) finally encounters the Beast. Yeva's narration is interspersed with snippets from the Beast's perspective, adding depth, and while the plot is largely predictable, this emotionally complex story satisfies. Spooner writes eloquently about magic, her world building is excellent, and the book's characters are nuanced and well drawn. Ages 13 up.