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“Lost in a Book” adds new twist on classic fairy tale

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Lost in a Book, published in Jan. 2017 and written by Jennifer Donnelly, is a spin-off of the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast.
Donnelly writes from Belle’s point of view. The story begins at a chess game between death and love, who are personified as two sisters. They are now on the next round of their eternal battle. A bet is placed on Belle’s future with the Beast. Death decides to twist it to her advantage and place an enchanted book in the workroom.
There are many similarities between the book and the new movie. However, it differs when Belle decides that her time is better spent in the library reading than fighting a losing battle to befriend the Beast.
Eventually, she searches for an intriguing book and stumbles upon an open door. She wanders in to clean the room and explore, but finds a dust-free book entitled Nevermore. She enters the book to find a separate life where she can travel Europe and journey back to the Beast’s castle, but realizes that she has a better make-believe life in Nevermore.
Although reading a book after seeing the movie can seem counterintuitive, this book has a unique twist that still manages to deliver an intriguing and adventurous story, while still including the nostalgic characters.
Donnelly writes the book similar to the movie and entraps the reader in its clutches. This adventure is wrapped around a love story on a rose. That love story blooms and wilts as the reader continues through the fantastic drama as Belle travels between fantasy and reality, but tries to befriend the Beast.
It’s different reading a story that places Death and Love as people, but it makes the story all the more interesting. When Death created Nevermore I could picture exactly where Belle went throughout Europe through the descriptive imagery. Donnelly made it clear where Belle was, Nevermore or the Beast’s castle. Death is a “countess” in Nevermore and like any other villain I despised her for tricking Belle and found myself yelling at Belle in my head.
The chapters were a nice length especially if the reader only has snippets of time to read.
Donnelly wrote it “for girls who want to write her own story,” but many can enjoy it. The book teaches people to be grateful for what they have and that everyone can decide their own path in life.

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The student voice of Perry High School
“Lost in a Book” adds new twist on classic fairy tale