Saturday, July 25, 2009

Rose Daughter - Robin McKinley

Summary: When their father's business fails, three sisters move to a tiny neglected cottage far away from anything they have ever known. Beauty tends the awkward, unknown, thorny plants that surround it, and when they bloom the following summer an old woman tells her: "Roses are for love. Not silly sweethearts' love but the love that makes you and keeps you whole. . . there aren't many roses around any more because they need more love than people have to give them to make them flower." And when Beauty takes her father's place at the terrifying Beast's palace she discovers that the Beast's beloved rose garden is dying. . . . (summary from - image from

My review: I love fairy tales, even as the mother of five grown children and one not so grown, so I was eager to read Rose Daughter and see what Robin McKinley came up with. Fairy tales are well know and well loved, so the retelling of one needs to be something that reaches out and grabs you in the first chapter or two. McKinley left me wandering around in the in the halls of a magical castle for almost 4 weeks (I’m serious, it took me that long to finish this book). While Beauty spent most of her time in Beast’s glass house taking care of his roses, he was out in his orchards or up on the roof of his massive castle brooding. If I were turned into a beast I’d probably brood too, but this is a fairytale not real life.

I’m a person who keeps plugging along at a book because usually, sooner or later, you get to the really good part and are glad you stuck with it. I was glad I stuck with it but only so I could say I had finished the book. The good thing about this book was that it contained no objectionable material. Anyone could read it.

My Rating: 2.5 Stars

Sum it up: If you love magical books that keep you wandering until the very end you might like this book.


MindySue said...

I'm reading one of those books right now...the kind where you aren't really enjoying it, but plugging along anyway. I don't know if I'll make it.

I think, with fairytales, there is a fine line between "enchanting" and "boring". Thanks for letting us know which side of the line this one falls on.

Heather said...

Very nice review. I think I'll steer clear of this one.

Editt said...

I agree with your review on this book. Robin McKinley's first take on this fairy tale is so much better. Its called Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast. I couldn't put that one down.


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