Thursday, April 26, 2018

ARC Book #Review: Bella and the Beast (Cinderella Sisterhood #4) by Olivia Drake

Book Title: Bella & The Beast (A Cinderella Sisterhood Novel #4)
Author:  Olivia Drake |WebsiteTwitter| |
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Genre: Historical Romance
Series/Standalone: Book 4
Format: ebook, Mass Market
Cost: $7.99
Pages: 352
How I got it: NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble |IndieBound
Publication Date: Nov 03, 2015
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Even a confirmed bachelor can meet his match. Because sometimes fairy tales do come true...

Bella Jones feels like a fish out of water in civilized England. Raised abroad by her explorer father, she's amused by the very proper manners of the nobility. Nevertheless, to save her younger siblings from ruin, she must infiltrate a ducal household in order to find the map to an ancient treasure trove. Alas, the haughty, handsome duke stands in her way...unless she can tame his beastly temper, that is.

Miles Grayson, the Duke of Aylwin, prefers antiquities to, well, everything else. Especially prying females with their irksome questions. But Bella's blue eyes and beguiling smile are improbably charming, and the temptation of her kiss is impossible to resist. As the pair is swept into a mystery that reaches back to their childhoods, Miles realizes that Bella has made the rarest discovery of all-the key to his heart... 2016 Finalist for Best Historical Romance: Long!
This was a fantastic beauty and the beast mixed with Cinderella retelling, even if the hero is a grave robber.  I thought the characters were put together well, I was intrigued the whole time and couldn't wait to see how it all came together.The main plot pivoted around the treasure map that these two characters are vying for and there was a greater mystery about what happened all those years ago in the desert.  The mystery complicated the loved story and I thoroughly enjoyed it. 

For me, the ending wasn't predictable (except the love story otherwise why would we be here??) because of the mystery of what happened all those years ago. Bella was too young to remember everything and Miles was left out of the full loop and is dealing with his guilt of what happened.  It was a pretty good ending even if the villain was kind of cliche which made it "ok" for the justice that he got. 

Some of my favorite parts of the book included the description of the ballroom and the library. I loved how the ballroom was covered in Egyptian artifacts and how all the relics were described.  His library sounded like my dream library.   I also loved that these two were trying to get to the same ending but had two different paths to get there. Based on the secrets they kept they were floundering around in the dark way more than they needed to.  My least favorite part also pivots off of the ballroom. I personally don't like the 'exploration" aspect of the grave robbing that took place. I also disliked that he and his family removed these things from their rightful place and he had no plans to share them with the rest of the world. 

Bella was a pretty unique character. I loved that she was so used to taking care of things and she wasn't one to be cowed des[pite how she was being treated by those who judged her based on her dress.  I also loved her siblings especially her brother who clearly thought he was supposed to be more of an adult than he truly was. I loved how they interacted as a family.  It would be nice if we got their stories int he future to see how it all turned out for them, trying to fit into 'polite society'. 

The POVs were good because it switched between them and gave us a chance to see their motivations and how they saw things so differently from each other.  The Cinderella similarities are all there especially in the beginning and the beauty and beast parts come later. I really enjoyed this rendition of these two classic stories. A quick fun read.  It doesn't read like a fourth book, which was great because I haven't read the first three yet. 

Happy Reading my loves, 

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