SYNOPSIS: Love and Death have made a bet, if Belle is the one to break the spell on the Beast and his castle, then Love wins, but if she is not, Death does and Death hates to lose. Preying on Belle’s love for books and desire for travel, Death gifts her a book that will take her anywhere, but it is all just pretend.
I enjoyed reading this little side adventure within the world of Beauty and the Beast. One of the things that I loved about the new film adaptation was that they gave Belle and the Beast a mutual love of reading and I liked how that came into play a bit in this book. It was sweet getting to see a different side to Belle and the Beast’s relationship and that we got to see Belle struggle a bit more to connect with the Beast and have doubts and sadness that she doesn’t really have time to feel in the film. I also liked the premise of escaping into a book because what reader hasn’t wanted to step into the pages of a book and live out a story inside. I also liked that you got to see the Beast be a bit of a goofball because he doesn’t really get much opportunity for that since he is afterall, the Beast. It was nice to get to see some different sides to him other than the anger he is always portrayed with. The only thing that I didn’t like was the jumping back and forth between Belle being in the book and Belle being in the castle. I felt like leaving the book and returning to the castle broke the tension and danger of the situation (especially since from the very beginning of the novel the reader knows Belle is in danger). If the reader didn’t know that the book was part of Death’s plan I feel like the jumping back and forth would’ve worked better, but since Death practically reveals her plan during the prologue it just made it a little annoying for me because I wanted to get to the meat of the story. Other than that this book was a fun read.