ARC Book Review: Hunted by Meagan Spooner
ashley | It seems like Beauty and the Beast is taking the world by storm. With the live-action movie creating a lot of buzz, Hunted by Megan Spooner isn’t even the only retelling of this story that I have on my to-read list. This does, however, have one of the prettiest covers I’ve seen in a long time, which was my initial draw to the book. The rest was just a happy occurrence.
Hunted follows a somewhat similar storyline to the familiar Disney adaptation, with a few subtle changes, no talking furniture, but a whole lot of extra attitude. Yeva, our Beauty, is a hunter alongside the best of them. She is strong willed, at home in the forest, loyal to her family and willing to wed a man she doesn’t love because he will respect her as a hunter and give her family the security they need.
Told back and forth between Yeva’s point of view and the point of view of the Beast as he grows more and more beast-like, this retelling interweaves Russian folklore alongside the story we are more familiar with. This is by far my favourite part of this retelling, how the existence of the fairy tale / folklore is its own character here. Beast and Beauty both share stories, as well as acknowledge that what has happened to him is right out of a fairy tale. The fusion between the story’s reality and folklore is a thing of beauty.
I happily enjoyed this read. Ultimately, you know where you are being taken, but Spooner did a great job introducing new aspects and giving a familiar story a reignited life of its own. Like I said, I really liked Yeva as Beauty and really enjoyed watching her grow more and more comfortable and fond of the Beast as she got to know him and his situation a little more. Of all the retellings and attention to this story happening right now, I’m happy this is where I started and think this would be a great read for any fan of the story or just of folklore in general.
march 14, 2017