This tale is a "Beauty and the Beast" like no other, weaving the familiar fairytale tropes around the story of Sarah, a lonely girl with a lonely life. Sarahbear, as her mother calls her, knows that her family is hiding a secret. They are always on the move, running from cold weather and going house to house before Sarah ever has a chance to settle or make friends.
Just when she starts to make the acquaintance of Alan, a compelling older boy, Sarah is shuttled away yet again. This time, though, her parents aren’t staying with her. Instead, she is the reluctant resident of a crumbling old castle in the middle of nowhere, and only her stern and frightening grandmother is there for company.
That’s what she is led to believe, anyway.
Natural curiosity and a bit of magic lead Sarah to discover talking ravens, family secrets, witches, and Beasts. As Sarah puts the pieces of her cursed family history together, older readers will be drawn into the richly detailed mystery and will probably be as surprised by the true identity of the Beast (or Beasts?) as Sarah herself is.
In this dark and thoughtful story, the Beast isn’t who you might think it is.
Read alikes: Bound, by Donna Jo Napoli; The Beast Within, by Serena Valentino
Posts by Mrs. Remington, School Librarian