Author: Rita Sadling
Blurb (taken from Goodreads):
A Near Future Retelling of Beauty and the Beast
Alainn’s father is not a bad man. He’s a genius and an inventor. When he’s hired to create the robot Rose, Alainn knows taking the money is a mistake.
Rose acts like a human. She looks exactly like Alainn. But, something in her comes out wrong.
To save her father from a five year prison sentence, Alainn takes Rose’s place. She says goodbye to the sun and goes to live in a tower no human is allowed to enter. She becomes the prisoner of a man no human is allowed to see.
Believing that a life of servitude lies ahead, Alainn finds a very different fate awaits her in the company of the strange, scarred recluse.
[This novel contains adult situations and is only suitable for readers who are 18+]
The buzz for this book couldn’t happen at a better time! With the upcoming live action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, readers will be drawn to the “tale as old as time” offered by Rita Sadling’s book… as they should be!
To begin: be aware that the audience for this book is definitely not children. I highly recommend adhering to the 18+ warning as the scenes get quite graphic. I would not put this in a YA section or in a high school library.
This book has been a wild ride from the first few chapters onwards! From the blurb, this story merely seems to be Beauty and the Beast retold as a sci-fi, but the blurb promotes the similarities a bit more than what the book actually is. Therefore, the retelling wasn’t overwhelming as it could have been; there were just enough inspiration to recognize the plotline.
While sci-fi stories never really captured my attention, this kind of world-building kept me on my toes. The AI robots throughout the story were realistic to the point of being uncanny, and I would occasionally get goose bumps throughout my reading. Gone are the friendly Lumière and Big Ben, to be replaced by a robot named Rosebud, who is Alainn’s sole ally for a while. The tower is dark and the walls are made entirely of screens that change at Rosebud or Lorcann’s mere command. As terrifying as it is, it’s also pretty cool and it made me think about where we will be in several years, technology-wise.
While the primary characters were great, the secondary characters were borderline unecessary. This story could have comfortably sustained itself with Alainn, Lorcann, and the AI robots… perhaps with the addition of two or three supporting characters. Unfortunately, characters like Greg, Karen, and Cara were irrelevant, in my opinion.
Nonetheless, I would recommend this book to an adult audience who want to read a modernized, sci-fi romance inspired by Beauty and the Beast. I received this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. The anticipated publication is December 2017.