Monday, 21 February 2011

A Kiss In Time by Alex Flinn

I was going to review this book, but I lent it to my sister to read.
She has now finished and reviewed it, so here's a wonderful link to My Sisters Blog (The Review List).

Book Cover
The story is a modern day take on Sleeping Beauty. Unfortunately I'd say it's not as good as Alex Flinn's Beastly. And Still too teeny for my liking, but it was an easy, light-hearted read. (And I quite liked the take on the Prince being a normal boy, who liked gardening, also apparent in Beastly. Interesting.)

I also quite like the more soft and empathetic telling of the 'witch'. It tells her small story in a way I hadn't seen before.
Then again, I always like stories being told from a different point of view. Especially fairy tales where there is usually a good side and an evil side, and you rarely get a hero or heroine with major personality flaws, or an antagonist with a good streak. Whereas in this book both things are apparent. Which is always good.
Still. Nice book to read, if only as one of many in the summer.

I'd say 3 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Beastly by Alex Flinn.

Beastly Movie Poster.
I bought this book because I happened to see the trailer for the new movie coming out, with Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer as the leading roles.
I didn't think much of the trailer (especially upon learning that the weird wiry tattoo things were supposed to make Alex Pettyfer look like a beast instead of fur, and the fact that he has to put on an American accent) but as soon as I knew it was a book I was there.

You see... I'm a massive fan of the fairytale genre. Especially the revamped fairytale genre.
Now I've read Neil Gaiman's 'Stardust', Gregory Maguires 'Mirror, Mirror', 'Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister' and 'Wicked' series (although, yes, those aren't really fairytales, just reworkings) and John Connolly's 'The Book of Lost Things'. All of which contain sometimes very dark interpretations of fairy tales.

And that's the way I like them.

Beastly Book Cover
So Beastly was a surprisingly small book. I ordered it from Amazon and surprisingly it came a couple of days later at a bargain price. The blurb on the back says: " I Am a Beast. A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dogbut a horrible creature who walks upright - a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a Monster." And this is how Kyle Kingsbury, an ex popular guy who had it all (looks, money, popularity :/ ) now looks. Which is great. Because he was a right ass.
So yeah, a witch turns him into the beast and he now has 2 years to find true love.

I think what I liked most about Beastly was the way that it told the tale of Beauty and the Beast in the Beasts point of view. Sure, we all would know what it's like, but you never knew before what the Beasts life was like beforehand, how being a Beast, and falling in love, changed him.
And this story does just that.
Obviously aimed at teens and young adults (but I'd recommend it to anyone) Beastly plays out a beautiful friendship and romance and I'm sure a character or two might live in your heart for a while. Kyle's tutor was a favourite of mine. (Who, in the film is played by the wonderful Neil Patrick Harris.)

Something I didn't find quite so great though, was the way that Alex Flinn tried to incorporate other fairytale. Sure, It works for some books, but to me the chat room and other obvious fairytale characters in it wasn't needed. Sure, it made it modern, but it already felt modern to me. One thing it does do is highlight a flaw of Kyles- self-centredness. I'm not so sure this was supposed to happen. So I've taken a point off for that.
And because it's just a little bit too teeny for my liking, another half point.

So I give Beastly 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

Either way, lets just say, I've found a new love of roses.

On the to read/review list

Some of these I have yet to read, and some I have read, and have yet to read again and then review.
So here's the first set of 10:
(picture from google)

1. Beastly - Alex Flinn
2. A Kiss in Time - Alex Flinn
3. Inkheart, Inkspell, Inkdeath (Inkworld Trilogy)- Cornelia Funke
4. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
5. The Book of Lost Things - John Connolly
6. The Pact - Jodi Picoult
7. Fire - Kristin Cashore
8. The Interpretation of Murder - Jed Rubenfield
9.The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
10. Anansi Boys - Neil Gaiman

I've chosen these first because I have all of these around my house/s somewhere. And read a few very, very recently. (The ones with links on them (in green) are the one's I've already done.)
I look forward to reading and reviewing them.
Wish me luck!