Title: Blossom and the Beast
Author: R.S. McCoy
Published: 31st May 2016
Publisher: R.S. McCoy
Genre: Romance, Fairy Tale Retelling
Length: 320 pages
Source: eARC from the author
Book Blurb (via Goodreads):
*A paranormal romance retelling of Beauty and the Beast*
Blossom Frane is only weeks away from her transformation. On her eighteenth birthday, she’ll find out her future branch of society and her totem, the animal form she’ll be able to take at will for the rest of her life. Like her brothers, she’s expected to be a brown bear of the religious branch known as Terra.
In the Alderwood forests, Blossom’s bear blood is a valuable asset. Any day now, a rival clan leader will step forward and offer her father a hefty bounty in exchange for her hand in marriage. Blossom can do nothing more than sit back and wait to be traded to the highest bidder.
Determined to spend her last weeks exploring the Alderwood, Blossom sneaks away and manages to find Kaide Landel, a rising political star of the Pyro branch. Known for his violence and disregard for the religious teachings of the Terra branch, he’s all wrong for the bear clan’s prized daughter. But when the politician uses his wealth and influence to secure her hand, Blossom has no choice but to leave her family and marry him—if she lives that long.
A new paranormal romance from RS McCoy, author of The Sparks Saga, The Luminary Chronicles, and The Extraction Files series.
Book One of The Alder Tales.
An exciting new take on the classic fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast, Blossom and the Beast was everything I had hoped for and more. Beauty and the Beast has always been a favourite of mine and I had high expectations going into this story. McCoy’s descriptive writing and engaging action helped to suck me in and not let go.
Blossom has grown up in the Alderwood with her clan. She’s twelve days away from her transformation, where she will receive her totem – an animal form – and she expects to be a bear just like her three brothers. Her wild spirit feels stifled in the vast forest, and she wants nothing more than to have the freedom to roam and do as she pleases, but as soon as her transformation has passed she will receive offers of marriage and her father will trade her to a different clan. Moving her from one prison to another, only without her loving family around her. Then the mysterious Vice Syndicate Kaide offers her father a trade he can’t refuse and Blossom finds herself in the dangerous lands of Pyrona, struggling to figure out the man who will become her husband as well as herself in the days leading to her transformation.
There were so many things to love about this story. Just, so many. The characters were all vibrant and full of personality. Blossom was fiery and stubborn and liked to do as she pleased. The way she reacted to everything happening to her was brilliant and I loved seeing her talk back to the ever unflappable Vice Syndicate.
Watching the relationship between the two progress was wonderful. Although it all happened so fast, it didn’t feel forced or unnatural – or insta-love – but a logical move on both their parts. The trouble that this causes in Kaide’s political life was really intriguing and I kept wondering how it would affect them in the long run.
The subtle hints hidden throughout the story were brilliant, I actually missed them until I was finished and thinking back on the rest of the book.
This is set to be a series on my auto-buy list, I couldn’t put the story down once I’d started and I flew through it. I’m not usually the kind of person who likes a lot of romance in my stories, but this one was just so cute and made me smile throughout. Blossom and Kaide really were formidable match, even if they kept butting heads.
I wasn’t prepared for the ending. If you like a good twist in your stories, I’d highly recommend picking this one up. McCoy was so clever in her execution that I was literally shocked when I got to the end. Although it ends on a cliffhanger, I don’t feel cheated at all and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next book.
About the Author
Rachel McCoy is a Texan living in New Jersey. Between binge watching MTV reality shows and baking gluten free treats, she writes paranormal fantasy and science fiction novels. She is the self-published author of the Sparks Saga trilogy as well as numerous short stories, some of which now reside in anthologies. Back when she lived in the real world, Rachel earned a degree in marine biology, which contributed to her die-hard love of manta rays.
*Picture and Biography from Goodreads