Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Are You Hooked? Young Adult #19

TITLE: A Beastly Beauty
GENRE: YA Fairy Tale

Isabella's lived her whole life as a hideous beast, thanks to a wicked fairy's curse. And as if that weren't bad enough, a blonde in glass slippers just stole the one man who might be falling for her anyway. (Gender-swapped "Beauty and the Beast," featuring Cinderella as a villain.)

I glanced back at the castle in the moonlight. Father’s windows were dark, except for the ones in his study. In another few minutes Amelita would bring him a hot toddy, and then he would retire for the night.
My night was just beginning.
I clutched Domino’s reins with one hand and the cool metal clasp of my cloak with the other. My pulse pounded with the familiar thrill of being out and on my way to town, the one night each month when I was—when I looked—well, normal. Human.
I had Amelita, my faithful nursemaid, to thank for it. She had decided on my sixteenth birthday, which happened to coincide with the full moon, that I ought to spend the evening beyond our castle grounds.
“After all, chérie,” she had said then, “how will you ever find your true love if you just sit about here, waiting for him to thunder through the gate? Your father’ll have him into the dungeon faster than he can say ‘Be mine, Lady Isabella!’”
That night I had slipped on my cape and sneaked through the gate to ride Domino into Molinas, the town below our estate. I had played darts, tasted ale, and danced with a handsome stable hand. It was glorious. I had impatiently counted the days between full moons ever since.
And for over two years of full moons, Father had been none the wiser.
I slowed Domino to a walk. Tolly, our ancient gatekeeper, leaned against the wall.


  1. I'm DEFINITELY hooked. I love fairytale retellings, and the hints that there's something not quiet right the the "Belle" character, I would love to see where this story goes. With my own gender-swapped fairytale retelling I'm a huge fan of what you're doing here!

  2. Love the premise! I love a good fairytale retelling, and the gender swap and unexpected villain are brilliant. I would remove "anyway" from the end of the log line to strengthen it.

    There's a few more "had"s than necessary. Once you set up a paragraph as a past event, you don't need to keep referring to the events as something that "had happened". Does that make sense? (Not sure how to word that better...)

    It's unclear when introduced that the full moon turns Isabella human again. It kind of sounds like the nursemaid worked out some deal.

    This is a great setup. I want a little more from the first line, but there's enough inherent question in it to keep me reading.

    Great job. Write on!

  3. The plot is funny and I would certainly read the story. I also loved the way it started, but the backstory ruins everything for me. I would probably skip all the backstory because right now I am intrigued by the MC, and I want to know more about her now. I do not want to be told about what she did the year before, but I want to be told what she is caable of and how she looks at the world. Still, this sound like so much fun. Nice imagination.

  4. I love the premise! Some of the backstory could be cut down and worked in a bit later, but the premise would get me through it as long as she's on her way now to get into some action.

  5. First of all, had to check yours out because my story is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, and the Beast is named Isabella too!

    Not too much to say. You could probably tighten the second sentence up (The lights in Father's study were the only ones lit).

  6. I really like both the title and the logline! I would be hooked based on those alone. I thought the whole intro was good and I would keep reading.