Today I’m part of a blog tour with Disney to celebrate Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book by Jennifer Donnelly! My review copy of Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book and a complimentary copy of Belle’s Library: A Collection of Literary Quotes and Inspirational Musings was provided by Disney.
Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book
January 31, 2017
About Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book
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 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.
I won’t lie– I agreed to review this book for two reasons: one, because I love Jennifer Donnelly’s writing (A Northern Light is still my favorite, though I’ve enjoyed other books she’s written) and because I needed a little more Beauty and the Beast in my life to tide me over until the movie comes out next month. Right? You know.
Because I know what a fantastic writer Donnelly is, I didn’t worry that this book would be overly cheesy, and in fact it wasn’t. Don’t get me wrong– there are still silly antics between the household characters, like Cogsworth rambling about grand stories and Lumiere gently teasing him while Mrs. Potts mothers everyone. But on the whole, the story has a more serious tone– much like the original animated movie. The prologue and epilogue feature two sisters– Death and Love playing chess together and discussing a wager they’ve made over the lives of Belle and her Beast. That sets a darker tone for the story, but for the most part, the tale isn’t dark.
I liked that the story tied into some of the memorable moments from the movie– Beast sharing his library with Belle, and the way he saved her from the wolves. But there were added moments, too, where the reader gets to see expanded scenes from those referenced in the movie and a lot more of the process of Belle trying to figure out where she belongs and whether to trust her new castle friends.
The story about the enchanted book felt like it definitely could have happened between scenes of the original movie. I liked that I didn’t have to abandon one of my favorite childhood movies in order to enjoy this, but it didn’t try to compete with the movie, either. This was a fresh, different story that still tied in with the overarching tale.
Overall? I definitely recommend this one to Beauty and the Beast fans, especially those counting down the days to the release of the new movie who need a little something to get through until it hits theaters.
Belle comes from a small French town. In Nevermore, she meets a fair-skinned countess and her sister, who has dark skin and silver hair.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
One instance of mild profanity near the beginning of the book. (Beast makes a comment that he and his companions are cursed.)
Some magical elements. Two sisters– Death and Love appear as sisters and make a wager on Beast and Belle. Death intends to win the bet by any means necessary. Throughout the story, as in the original Disney movie, Belle learns that it’s the strength of heart, of love that matters and that loving takes great courage.
A brief battle scene in which Belle fights off clockwork beings and briefly faces down Death herself.
About Jennifer Donnelly
Jennifer Donnelly is an award-winning, best-selling author of books for young adults and adults, including the Waterfire Saga: Deep Blue, Rogue Wave, Dark Tide, and Sea Spell. Her other young adult novels include These Shallow Graves, Revolution, and A Northern Light, winner of Britain’s prestigious Carnegie Medal, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Literature, and a Michael L. Printz Honor. She has also written Humble Pie, a picture book, and the adult novels The Tea Rose, The Winter Rose, and The Wild Rose. She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley. You can visit her at www.jenniferdonnelly.com, or on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @jenwritesbooks.
Enter the Giveaway for a Chance to Win a Collection of 20 Books!
Update: Giveaway has ended.
Here’s what’s included in the prize pack:
- Lost in a Book
- Belle’s Library
- Art of Coloring: Beauty and the Beast
- Tale as Old as Time
- A Twisted Tale: As Old As Time
- The Beast Within
- The Isle of the Lost and Return to the Isle of the Lost
- Kingdom Keepers: The Return (3-book series)
- Star Wars trilogy (3-book series)
- Percy Jackson & The Olympians (5-book series)
- Tales from the Haunted Mansion: Volume 1
Giveaway open to US addresses only.
Prizes and samples provided by Disney Press.