Thursday, December 28, 2017

"Shattered Roses" by E.L. Parfitt!

Hiya peeps! Fairy-Tale Retelling today, for Beauty and the Beast! Check it out, and be sure to let me know your favorite retellings in the comments - I could use more recommendations! =D

Shattered Roses

 Shattered Roses
~Author: E.L. Parfitt

~Released: April 24th 2017

~Length: 79 pages

~Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Fairy-Tale Retelling

A book for all Beauty and the Beast fans! A contemporary retelling viewed through the eyes of a teenager. Sixteen year old Megan wants to be a doctor. When Megan volunteers at a residential home she meets Lady. Lady tells a fragmented and confusing story of a duke who never aged; his fate tied to the roses that grew in his garden. As Megan hears more of Lady’s tale she is intrigued to know whether the duke existed or if he is a figment of Lady’s imagination. As Megan embarks on unravelling the mystery of the beast a hidden family secret emerges... will it shatter her life forever?

 My Review

*3 1/2 Roses*

Lovely ReTelling

ReTellings are often clever and creative, and can be some of the best stories. Taking a well-known story and painting it in a new light is sometimes the best way to freshen up a classic, and give it new life. Beauty and the Beast is one of the most famous fairy-tales, and with the live-action film release this year, interest in this story seems renewed. What could be a better time for a retelling?

In this story, Megan is a teenage girl with dreams of becoming a doctor. She volunteers at a retirement home in hopes of gaining merits to add to her university applications, and is assigned to a lady they call Lady, who has a remarkable story. As she shares her story with Megan, we learn about this wonderful fairy-tale history, that seems too fantastic to be real. Meanwhile, Megan's life takes a sharp turn, with a family secret that twists her past, and will change her future.

As a story, this one was entertaining. I enjoyed the slights and jabs at the modern versions, thrown in to give this story more realism. The idea of this story being told by an older woman was sweet, and is a concept I support quite a bit, having young people spend time with their elders. I loved the fact Megan ignored everyone who told her to dismiss Lady and her fantastic story, and treat her as a senile old woman who's simply confused. Megan chose to believe her, and I think that changed both their lives for the better.

What I disliked about this book, was mainly the structure. The scene transitions were confusing, and jammed together, with no clear breaks. As a reader, there was no direction as to where we were at in the story, aside from chapter breaks. I had to re-read sections constantly to figure out where the characters were, and considering a lot of the book consists of flashbacks in Lady's story, it got quite frustrating. This is mainly an experience issue, and with some re-working, it could be corrected, so the reader is more led through the story, instead of tripping through paragraphs. This was worth removing a full rose.

Aside from that, I felt the ending wasn't finished. There were basically two stories being told in this book, Lady's and Megan's. While Megan's story came full circle and had a kind of ending, Lady's ending didn't seem clear to me, and didn't seem finished. It was confusing, and I felt as though I was missing a big chunk of her story. I removed half a star for this, since it was half the story unfinished.

Overall, I did enjoy this retelling. It is definitely rough in some areas, but worth the read if you enjoy this style book, especially for Beauty and the Beast. It's rather short, and could be entertaining for a rainy afternoon. I am thankful to the author for the opportunity to read and review.

*I was given a complimentary eCopy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.

Do you enjoy retellings? What are some of your favorites - I could always use more recommendations! =D

Thanks for visiting! Have a great day!