Hunted

Hunted

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s old lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them. So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters back to the outskirts of town, Ye...

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Title:Hunted
Author:Meagan Spooner
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Hunted Reviews

  • Hailey (HaileyinBookland)

    4.5*

    I really really enjoyed this! I normally like my fantasy books to have a lot of action and this one definitely lacked that but it worked really well because it read exactly like a fairy tale, which is perfect as this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling. This one stuck a bit closer to the Disney version/original fairy tale than others I have read while also taking a unique spin on it which I thought was very neat. Overall an awesome retelling!

    *ARC provided for review by Indigo Books & Mu

    4.5*

    I really really enjoyed this! I normally like my fantasy books to have a lot of action and this one definitely lacked that but it worked really well because it read exactly like a fairy tale, which is perfect as this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling. This one stuck a bit closer to the Disney version/original fairy tale than others I have read while also taking a unique spin on it which I thought was very neat. Overall an awesome retelling!

    *ARC provided for review by Indigo Books & Music Inc. as I am an Indigo employee*

  • Cait • A Page with a View

    Umm pretty sure Beauty & the Beast + Russian folk tales (mostly "Tsarevitch Ivan, the Firebird and the Gray Wolf") is the most genius mix I never knew I needed.

    Beauty is a childhood nickname for Yeva, a girl who grew up hunting with her father and wants a husband who admires her talent as an equal. She's a wonderfully complex, flawed, and capable main character and I really enjoyed reading from her POV. She's torn between duty & caring for her family and seeking the life she wants.

    The

    Umm pretty sure Beauty & the Beast + Russian folk tales (mostly "Tsarevitch Ivan, the Firebird and the Gray Wolf") is the most genius mix I never knew I needed.

    Beauty is a childhood nickname for Yeva, a girl who grew up hunting with her father and wants a husband who admires her talent as an equal. She's a wonderfully complex, flawed, and capable main character and I really enjoyed reading from her POV. She's torn between duty & caring for her family and seeking the life she wants.

    The retelling follows the traditional Beauty & the Beast with how Beauty is her father's favorite of his 3 daughters. He's a trader who loses his fortune, so they all move into his remote hunting cabin in the forest. Beauty grew up hearing his stories of the Firebird and other fairy tales, but didn't think they were real. One day the father goes missing, so Beauty goes to find him and is taken prisoner by the beast who killed him.

    The story's told from Beauty's POV but has a page from the Beast every few chapters to show his evolving mindset. How he became the Beast and the way that the Ivan & the Wolf story comes in was pretty clever.

    The author really put in a lot of effort to make the tricky areas of the retelling work. Beauty & the Beast has so many themes that can get super sketchy... the Stockholm Syndrome & bestiality have been straight up weird in a lot of retellings. In this one, Beauty doesn't realize the Beast is her captor when she becomes attached to him. After she finds out, she attempts to kill him several times, is completely self-aware, and has serious conversations with a friend about women who form attachments to men who are cruel to them. It was nice that the author addressed those topics instead of trying to dance around everything and pretend it's a totally normal situation at the very least.

    And I was so, so grateful that Beauty's two sisters weren't the petty, cruel characters from the original story. The three sisters are all selfless, kind, and unique characters who love and support each other. I'm getting sick of reading about constant girl hate, so that was just a nice change.

    And I'm not sure why the title says "Hunted #1" like this is part of a series because this story totally ended. Maybe there's a series of other retellings? I don't know, but don't worry about this being any kind of cliffhanger!

    Anyways, the writing is seriously gorgeous and the snowy Russian-type world was amazing. I just really love snow. The only reason I took a star off was because this story was going SO strong and then kind of... fizzled out in the last 10%.It changed gears into what felt almost like a new story or direction, but then that was over too quickly. And I just wasn't into the romance at the end either.

    So the end had some wasted potential, but the rest of the story was really well done!!

    Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC.

  • Emily May

    4 1/2 stars.

    . I got an arc of

    from edelweiss months ago. After putting it off again and again for other books, I decided to let it expire. Seriously, who even needs another

    retelling? Then this book was given to me as a gift and *resigned sigh* I decided to just give it a shot. And I'm so glad I did.

    is still my favourite

    4 1/2 stars.

    . I got an arc of

    from edelweiss months ago. After putting it off again and again for other books, I decided to let it expire. Seriously, who even needs another

    retelling? Then this book was given to me as a gift and *resigned sigh* I decided to just give it a shot. And I'm so glad I did.

    is still my favourite

    retelling, but this comes in at a close second. It obviously follows the familiar B&tB format, whilst doing something completely new and fresh with it. I loved what it did. I love the new themes the author explores in this old template.

    It's a

    . Full of icy coldness, the language of fairy tales, and underneath, a running theme of that inexplicable longing for something you can't quite put your finger on. Maybe it's like wanderlust - that restlessness and dissatisfaction with staying in one place for too long. Maybe it's just

    without knowing what you want. It's powerful, though, and Spooner captures that feeling so wonderfully here.

    Surprisingly, it's very... not romantic. There is no time given over to lusty encounters and stolen kisses with a somehow sexy beast. Rather, the relationship between Beauty and this Beast is one between two outsiders who see something they recognize in one another. Yeva (aka "Beauty") is a trained hunter and she remains dedicated to her passion and her family throughout.

    The setting is

    . Lots of coldness, snow and ice, and it fits with the tale very well. Yeva and her father navigate this white-covered wilderness in their hunting, but then Yeva's father starts rambling about a beast unlike any other. A beast that is smart and cunning. A beast that is following him.

    When he doesn't return from a hunting trip, Yeva leaves her beloved sisters to go track him. Of course, she finds way more than she bargained for. Not just a beast, but

    that seem to play by a different set of rules. But Yeva knows these rules; they're the rules of the fairy tales her father always read to her. The rule of threes. The rule of curses. The rule of breaking them.

    Yeva is determined to kill the beast and return to her family. But her quest to kill the seemingly unkillable creature unveils ever more secrets, and the longer she spends in this world, the more she worries what world she will find when she leaves.

    Despite having read so many retellings these past few years,

    found a special place in my heart.

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  • Anne

    Except.

    Yeah, this is

    Beauty and the Beast.

    This Beauty is a bit less

    and a bit more...

    . Which is a pretty nice change of pace, to be honest!

    Plus, this time around, it isn't the villagers who are out to

    , it's Beauty, herself. She's a hunter. A badass hunter.

    And because

    she's on a mission to take a chunk out of his supernatural hide. Of course, killing him means she's gotta stay on as his

    prisoner

    Except.

    Yeah, this is

    Beauty and the Beast.

    This Beauty is a bit less

    and a bit more...

    . Which is a pretty nice change of pace, to be honest!

    Plus, this time around, it isn't the villagers who are out to

    , it's Beauty, herself. She's a hunter. A badass hunter.

    And because

    she's on a mission to take a chunk out of his supernatural hide. Of course, killing him means she's gotta stay on as his

    prisoner while she looks for the chink in his armor that will allow her to take her revenge.

    The romance is so slow to build that even the

    are clueless until the very end. And even

    what brings them together is more of a mutual understanding of each other. A recognition of someone with the same wants and needs - with the same sort of big gaping hole in their soul.

    You know, kinda like real life.

    Oh. Well, there's not any enchanted fucking rose in this one. Soooo. Yeah.

    But Beauty sure does take her sweet ass time getting back to the castle to try to break the spell. In fact, she takes so much time that

    Oh my god! Do they ever get to do that fancy twirly dance in the ballroom?!

    Ok, this was a lovely romance, but the goal of this tale

    that your life will be complete when you find your prince (or princess).

    There's nothing magical over the horizon that is going to make you happy. There's no person that can complete you, no task that once you finish will give you perfect satisfaction, and no point in your life where you can breathe that sigh of relief and live happily ever after.

    Life just...is. Until it isn't.

    Try to enjoy the times that aren't horrible (because there

    horrible times), and stop waiting on

    to happen before you let yourself be satisfied.

    Bone-deep happiness is more of a choice than most people realize, and if you're able to choose it you'll be far better off than most.

  • Lola  Reviewer

    This is a slightly obscure, yet wonderfully so, retelling of ‘‘Beauty and the Beast,’’ my preferred fairytale of all existing ones.

    Yeva is a huntress. She loves it. She loves the feel of finding prey and hunting it. She is her father’s daughter. But her sisters do not understand her love of hunting, and when it’s time to choose a husband, who will accept her as she is? Who will share her unconv

    This is a slightly obscure, yet wonderfully so, retelling of ‘‘Beauty and the Beast,’’ my preferred fairytale of all existing ones.

    Yeva is a huntress. She loves it. She loves the feel of finding prey and hunting it. She is her father’s daughter. But her sisters do not understand her love of hunting, and when it’s time to choose a husband, who will accept her as she is? Who will share her unconventional hobby?

    Given her undaunted nature, it’s no surprise she is the first one to propose to go after her father when the latter fails to come home. Leaving the man who loves her with the entirety of his heart, or so he claims, to care for her two sisters, she goes after her father.

    And encounters the Beast.

    The story progresses with slowness, but its elegant writing will make it that you will enjoy every second of it.

    It takes a while for the story to show us how original it can be—because until then, there are countless similarities to the fairytale as we know it or retellings we have read previously, such as

    and

    .

    ‘‘Hunted’’ does, however, introduce new elements to the fairytale. Yeva is presented as a courageous, fearless huntress who will stop at nothing to avenge her father. She is romanticized—to some extent—because although she is steel, steel can be melted. Regardless, she stands her own and tries to do what she thinks is right with determinacy.

    When I speak of ‘‘new elements,’’ I am mainly referring to the Russian fairytale ‘‘Ivan, the Firebird and the Gray Wolf,’’ which is weaved into the story. Quite a surprising turn of events this story brings, let me tell you.

    I am also referring to a certain beautiful theme this author illustrates. Everyone pursues happiness—it’s in our nature. We all want to live a happy life. But what does make us happy exactly? When do we know we’ve reached the happiness we were meant to?

    This novel is written in the third person point of view, but interestingly enough, we have numerous, though short, first person point of views from the Beast itself. Though they may appear confusing to the reader at first, they add a certain lyrical quality to the story. So I definitely would never think to get rid of them.

    I can’t see why any lover of fairytale retellings should miss on this book.

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  • Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies

    Ugh. So I'm a sucker for Beauty and the Beast retellings and Russian-y stuff and bad-ass chicks, and so I when I read the blurb, a B&B retelling set in a vaguely Russian-sounding place with Belle as a hunter out to get Beast, fuck yeah, give it to me baby.

    Luckily, I was not disappointed. This book was awesome! It had everything I wanted. The traditional elements of the original tale are there, and I do mean the original tale, not the Disney version, but adapted to a Russian-like setting. It is familiar and comforting, in a different setting, and my love for the classic tale is such that I never get tired of the variations. Some of the (welcome) difference in the book is that Gaston (Solmir) is actually a really nice guy (I was rooting for him!) and Belle (Yeva)'s sisters are really nice (again, a welcome change)

    Yeva, her sisters, and father live together with their widowed father, leading a comfortable life. She, however, longs for the woods and the hunt. She knows she will have to marry, but it's a prospect to which she does not look forward.

    Due an unfortunate loss of a trade caravan, their entire fortune was lost. It is a devastating blow, and they will have to return to the forest, where he had lived before marrying their late mother. They bore the loss of their fortune resolutely and bravely, but there is no doubt that it is overwhelming to them all.

    Their new home is cold, strange, and wild. Something lurks in the forests, slowly driving her father mad. With her father gone, Yeva wanders back into the forest to hunt, reveling in the freedom, until she is captured and chained by the Beast. But she is no weakling, and she knows what she must do.

    I've been told that this is also based on another Russian fairy tale, but what it reminds me of is

    , Scheherazade's tale. Like Scheherazade, Yeva tells her captor of her life, tells him tales, to keep him entertained and to keep her own sanity.

    Our Beauty is a hunter and she uses her skills, hunting and learning aside Beast. The romance is almost nonexistent throughout most of the story, as it should be. And yes, there is a sense of

    , but come on, have you read the original tale and the Disney version? The important thing here is that their friendship and eventually, their romance, is believable; a slow burn.

    I just really like this book. Even Solmir (Gaston) *squee*

  • Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink

    *Full Review Update

    Guys I'm so sad. I didn't love it. Don't get me wrong, I totally see why others did, and I'm in the minority for this one.

    I'm not going to type a summary on this one because well, it's a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Some parts were close to the original, and other parts deviated quite a bit. In my opinion, it was the wrong parts. Here's the thing... I'm super biased. I grew up with Beauty and the Beast and I just hold it in such a high regard so it's hard for me to love ret

    *Full Review Update

    Guys I'm so sad. I didn't love it. Don't get me wrong, I totally see why others did, and I'm in the minority for this one.

    I'm not going to type a summary on this one because well, it's a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Some parts were close to the original, and other parts deviated quite a bit. In my opinion, it was the wrong parts. Here's the thing... I'm super biased. I grew up with Beauty and the Beast and I just hold it in such a high regard so it's hard for me to love retellings unless they are as emotionally connected as the first.

    The story starts off SOOOO slow. It's literally everyone doing normal actions for a good chunk of it. One thing I did love right off the bat was Beauty's connection to her family. She adores her father and sisters and there is such mutual love and acceptance.

    However, very little happens as the story progresses. If I'm remembering correctly, the B&tB storyline doesn't even start until like 30-35%? But okay, I'm fine with slower start if they are imperative for character development, but eek it was boring.

    Anyway, once the main storyline did start, I just... didn't feel it. I felt like there was no chemistry between Beauty and the Beast. It supposedly took place over months and there was hardly any conversations or interaction between them. I guess I just wanted more? However, I DID love the scene where she sneaks into his room to try and kill him. So there's that. It did finally make me feel something for the beast. But really... that was it.

    Whatever, I could have held out and still been quite happy with the book just based on the pretty writing and the folklore aspects if the end had followed through. But whaaat? What even happened? Okay so Beauty went back to her family and literally stayed there for months while she knew she needed to save the beast. But she's all like "Oh hey I'll leave tomorrow it's fine." That literally happened about 10 times and next thing you know, it's months later. Please. Are you serious right now. And then the actual end where she goes to find the Beast... what even happened? I don't even know. BUT the one thing I did love was how the story with her sisters wrapped up. So there's that.

    Soooo all in all I was pretty disappointed, but there were some good points that I kinda brushed over. Like I said, the writing was lovely, the forest description was really cool, and the folklore aspect was what had me in such high hopes for the ending. Also, the whole captor vs captive thing can be so tricky to navigate but the author handled it really well - I saw no sketchy issues there.

    Anyway, all in all, it wasn't really for me, but don't let this deter you. Try it out for yourself!

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  • Reynita Maharani ★ The Night Reader ★

    I truly don't know why I didn't really like this book. Maybe it's because I was in reading slump while reading it ? or maybe it was just the book that wasn't really interesting ? the

    I truly don't know why I didn't really like this book. Maybe it's because I was in reading slump while reading it ? or maybe it was just the book that wasn't really interesting ? the reason is either of them.

    Before I read this book, I kind of had high expectations about it because I heard so many great things about it and even though, retelling is not one of my favorite genres, I still like reading it.

    I was so excited when I first started reading it, like really really excited. THE BLURB SOUNDED GOOD TO ME.

    This was what I felt when I began reading it. I was excited and the beginning of the book was pretty good.

    but then the more I read it, the more I realized that this book didn't meet my expectations. I thought this book would be action-packed, but it wasn't. there're several action scenes in this book but it's not enough and oh my God, there were a lot of information and too much talking and

    OH AND I CERTAINLY DON'T NEED THE DRAMA BETWEEN YEVA-SOLMIR-ASENKA. UGH.

    I'm going to speak about them but I have to put spoiler tag on it, because I'm afraid someone would be spoiled.

    SPOILER!

    END OF THE SPOILER.

    and now the romance between Yeva and the beast. I consider it as enemy-to-lover-kind of romance. Yeva hates the beast at the beginning but then she slowly ... understands the beast? well, basically she develops feelings toward the beast but the saddest thing is, I could not feel anything for them. Not even a spark. Their romance was just boring for me. I felt as if the romance was forced.

    I don't know what else to talk about. I did enjoy reading it at the beginning but then after that the realization sank in that it didn't meet my expectations and then there was that whole drama that I hate. *sighs* I guess, the only thing that I loved in this book was the bond between the sisters. The bond was beautiful and sweet. I have a big sister and I love her so much and I certainly could relate to the bond between Yeva, Asenka and Lena.

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