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BOOK REVIEW: Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book by Jennifer Donnelly

Title: Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book
Author: Jennifer Donnelly
Publication: January 31, 2017
Publisher: Disney Press
Genre: Teens, YA Fiction, Fairy Tales & Fantasy
Pages: 350

SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Smart, bookish Belle, a captive in the Beast’s castle, has become accustomed to her new home and has befriended its inhabitants. When she comes upon Nevermore, an enchanted book unlike anything else she has seen in the castle, Belle finds herself pulled into its pages and transported to a world of glamour and intrigue. The adventures Belle has always imagined, the dreams she was forced to give up when she became a prisoner, seem within reach again.

The charming and mysterious characters Belle meets within the pages of Nevermore offer her glamorous conversation, a life of dazzling Parisian luxury, and even a reunion she never thought possible. Here Belle can have everything she has ever wished for. But what about her friends in the Beast’s castle? Can Belle trust her new companions inside the pages of Nevermore? Is Nevermore’s world even real? Belle must uncover the truth about the book, before she loses herself in it forever.

REVIEW:

If you are a fan of Beauty and the Beast, you will definitely enjoy this book.  It is a relatively easy read with the beloved, familiar characters we’ve come to know in this Disney classic.  What this book does is breathe fresh life into Belle’s story while she lives with the Beast and the enchanted objects in his castle.  I was a bit skeptical at first about additions to this tale that I love so much, but the author did a really nice job.

To explain a bit more, Belle is getting used to life outside Villeneuve (her childhood town) and even though she dreamed of more than the provincial life she was leading there, she finds herself missing it terribly.  So much so that once she gains access to the castle’s library, via the Beast’s generosity, she stumbles upon a book that seems to offer her an escape that she so desperately wants.  Come to find out, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be, as most escapes rarely are.  To me, the moral was clear.  You have to find the beauty and love in what surrounds you already and not try to search for the next best thing.  Sometimes what seems good and appealing is, in fact, not good at all.  Belle comes to learn this lesson as she navigates through the world she’s escaped to, the world of Nevermore, and tries to regain what she thought she wanted to leave behind.

As I said, if you enjoy the original story of Belle and the Beast, you will likely enjoy this, too.  The only reason I didn’t give it 5 out of 5 stars is because I feel that some of the sentences didn’t make sense at times and some more precise proofreading was needed.  I HATE when I get to a part of the book, and so far it’s flowing really nicely, and then I have to re-read something 4 or 5 times to try to make sense of it, only to discover it was probably a typo.  Yet, I still think the story, overall, deserves 4 out of 5 stars because I was highly entertained and finished it in about a week’s time.

STAR RATING: 4/5

Pick up your copy of Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book by Jennifer Donnelly on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or check your local bookstore. Also add it to your To Reads list on Goodreads and leave feedback for the author when you are finished. You can find more books by Jenniffer Donnelly on her website HERE!

About Amy Lockwood

BIO: Born and raised in Michigan, Amy is a proud wife, mother, and Christian. She currently teaches 8th grade Language Arts, where she can show her nerdy tendencies in her love for punctuation, book discussions, descriptive words, and parallel structure. She also enjoys reading, shopping, spending time with her family, and eating really delicious food.

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