Author: Alex Flinn
Genre: Paranormal Romance teen/ YA
Length: 336 pages
Date of Publication: 6th of October 2009
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 the perfect life. And then, I'll tell you how I became perfectly . . . beastly.
There is no use in denying that Alex Flinn, true to her fairytale love, has once again turned a classic tale into a modern magical story.
Personally I have a weakness and profound love for the classics so when I came across Beastly I really couldn't resist the modernisation of The Beauty and the Beast story.
As I read Beastly I couldn't help but compare it to the disney classic that so many of us know, and in doing so I came to realise and appreciate a fair few new aspects.
The disney version was designed for children. A tale to inspire the learning of the lesson that a book cannot be judged by it's cover and that love is neither materialistic or superficial, but in fact runs deep. All this and more can be picked up from the cartoon Belle and the Beast in about 90minutes.
Alex Flinn set up this fairytale in a modern setting giving all the lessons a new meaning and context. Being able to relate this story to our present reality was ever so simple and yet so crucial. Having learnt and understood the morals disney had imparted, I had never actually stopped and thought that these could be directly linked and applied to my very own present and non-magical life.
Alex Flinn's Beastly spoke of change, forgiveness, acceptance and of not only couple love but also family love and knowing thyself.
It was also quite nice to catch a glimpse of the future of a modern day beast and belle, of that happily ever after that every fairy tale tells us about without actually ever showing it to us. Sometimes it feels so fictional!
By the end of Beastly I came to really realise and appreciate that perhaps the true magical miracle was not the physical change Kyle underwent; but the one on the inside, that no eye could detect and yet all would feel.
Alex Flinn once again spun a lovely new twist on a tale as old as time. I look forward to more of her work and re-tellings of ancient classics in modern times.
If you liked this and enjoyed Alex Flinn's style then I would suggested trying A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn. If you want to stick to fairy tales style but not necessarily ones you know or are perhaps just seeking more sweet magic and adventure give Ella Enchanted by Gail C. Levine and The Treachery of Beautiful Things by Ruth F. Long. If on the other hand you're willing to try a magical story based upon mythological tales then I would recommend immersing yourself in The Goddess Chronicles by Aimee Carter.