ARC Review: Hunted by Meagan Spooner
Hunted by Meagan Spooner is a fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast and will be released from HarperTeen on March 14th, 2017! Thank you to HarperTeen for the eARC from Edelweiss, which in no way influenced my opinions of this title, check out my review below.
Category: Young Adult, Fantasy, Retellings
Publication: March 14th, 2017; HarperTeen
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?
As a huge fan of retellings — Beauty and the Beast especially — this was one of the most anticipated reads of the year for me. And while I enjoyed it well enough, it wasn’t spectacular or something I loved.
I did love the meshing of two tales. It worked well here. And Spooner’s writing is flawless.
Something in the story itself was lacking. In part, I think it’s that I didn’t really feel a connection between Yeva and the Beast. It didn’t feel as though she’d spent much time with him at all. And definitely not enough to develop romantic feelings for him. The story focused a lot on her life with her family. And even when she was going back for the Beast, it took even longer for him to find him again. Not to mention that the hunt/quest for the Firebird felt very anticlimactic. So much build-up and it just fell flat. Also, as this is a fairy tale of sorts, I felt the need for a true villain. And it wasn’t there.
On the positive side, I appreciated Yeva’s rebellious nature. She didn’t care a lick for society and their views and opinions. It’s always refreshing to see a woman who wants more than what’s expected of her.
Overall, this is a pretty good story; definitely worth a read for fans of the original tale. I’m curious to see where the future book(s) will go. 3.5 stars.