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I enjoyed most of this book so much. It was fascinating, intriguing and I found it difficult to place down. It was much more than a retelling of B&B, though of course, there were elements of that fairy tale in this story. On the negative side, I agree with another reviewer who remarked that the ending seemed rushed. There was so much detail throughout most of the book, and I was captivated by Beauty's globe and the life she led. Therefore, when the latest few chapters were so brusque and the ending completely abrupt, I felt jarred and a little @#$%!&eated. I suspect that this ending is meant to leave an opening for a sequel. If so, I for one, will certainly read it. And unlike so a lot of of the self-published offerings today that are hell bent on sequels and leave one hanging at the end of the first book, Roses is a complete story. It's just that the tone of the story changed/sped up drastically towards the end, leaving me feeling a bit bereft. But please don't allow this dissuade you from reading Roses. I very much recommend it. Another note, I'm not a huge fantasy fan. I have fun some fantasy tales, but only if they don't make a globe that I simply cannot relate to. (i.e. my favorite fantasy book of all time is "A Wrinkle in Time"). For me, Roses accomplished this beautifully. I was fascinated by the globe Mannering made and her writing skillfully brought me into it.
A truly brilliant take on the traditional Beauty and the Beast. Politically charged and tinged with magic, it reminded me Wicked by Gregory Maguire. In all honesty, however, it could have easily been twice as long. There were several instances where one sentence could have been an entire chapter, or more. At the end, it seemed like Mannering just gave up, as if she was tired of writing and just wanted to finish everything up. When I was nearing the end, I was certain that there was going to be a sequel to the book, because there was no method that it could tie everything up in the ten pages that were left. I think this book deserves fewer than four stars solely for the abrupt and forced ending, but I truly adored the first 7/8 of it (haha) and feel guilty for giving it less. I do recommend reading it.
OK. This book is geared for teens. I gave it 4 stars because it kept me interested throughout. Ending is a bit rushed. Secondary characters/back story could have been fleshed out a tad more. All in all, a amazing read from a young author. Mannering did a amazing job for a first book.
I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I love Beauty and the Beast and this is a clever retelling. I am a small disappointed in the ending, though. That's the reason for 4 stars. It just drops off into nothingness. It seemed a bit hurried, too. Maybe the author is doing a second book in a series? Anyway, it was a nice read.