Review: Hunted – Meagan Spooner

Little blog it’s a quiet posting, every review unlike the one before, little blog full of awesome readers, waking up to say…

Well, enough of trying to be a lyricist like the great’s Alan Menken, Tim Rice, and Howard Ashman…

Today’s review, if you can’t already guess is on the Beauty and the Beast YA retelling Hunted by Meagan Spooner.

If you’re as much of a fan of B&tB as I am, then March was truly a spectacular time in you life.

With the release of the live-action film, which was fantastic by the way, as well as the publication of Hunted on March 14, those in love with all things B&tB were definitely spoiled.

But, with B&tB being my favourite, I was a tad apprehensive of picking up Hunted, mostly because I dislike when people mess with a good thing, but mostly because I was worried I would spend the entire book comparing it to every other B&tB adaptation or retelling.

Did Spooner’s retelling exceed my expectations? Keep on reading to find out my thoughts and opinions.

The Book 

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s old lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them.

So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters 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.

Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange Beast back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of 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?

The Review

While there were elements of other B&tB tellings sprinkled throughout Hunted, I must admit I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this story.

While wise-cracking candelabras and grumpy clocks were out, the elements of B&tB that Spooner left in her novel only added to the atmosphere of Hunted.

Props to Spooner with her Russian-esk setting, given that I am also in the middle of The Romanov’s 1613 to 1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore.

Reading the later book isn’t necessary to enjoy Hunted, but because I am knee deep in Russian history at the moment, I felt that it let me image the setting easier.

I also love that this novel was rather light on the romance angle.

Hunted is about Yeva (Beauty) and Eovan (Beast) trying to find what they want in life.

A carefully constructed relationship is formed between the two, and while romance shows up near the end of the novel, it is the idea of the friendship (if that’s the right word) leading to a romance that makes the whole thing believable.

I loved all the characters, especially Doe-Eyes because who doesn’t love a good dog sidekick, and each served a specific purpose in the narrative that made Yeva’s passion and longing transcend off the page.

My only issue with this book and this is entirely on me and not on Hunted is the fact that I missed the ‘Gaston’ character.

Solimir is the closest match to Gaston, but his character serves a different purpose in Hunted, and as such there isn’t that villain you just hate to love.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. 

Purchase Links

Harper TeenAmazon | Barnes & Noble | Indigo

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