We have pretty good intel on the dad, who was an inventor — and as for the Beast himself, it is a full-time job being so ugly. The amount of sheer feministing that has to be done, to unpick the centuries of careful work that have gone into smothering the female spirit, is astonishing.
Beauty of the Beast
And then Emma Watson says something practical and simple, like: So, yeah, we made Belle an inventor. She makes redrawing the frame of cultural lore sound easy, but it is actually really bloody complicated. Looking at each classic in turn makes me suck my teeth like a feministing plumber at the thought of how much could go wrong. Sleeping Beauty Last year, the Bristol Old Vic put on a gender-reversed Sleeping Beauty , seeking to redress the innate sexism of a story in which the heroine has literally no agency, being asleep, and is nothing but the locus of male protection and rescue.
And is beautiful; important not to forget, that part. If a man accidentally rescued a woman who was only plain, imagine how boring that would be. It worked in the sense that it was fun to watch, but at smashing the patriarchy, not so much: Your only hope of feministing this one up would be to make the love interest follow her into the sea. He would lose his kingdom, but materiality versus identity is rather a trivial thing. He would also have to grow gills, but he could look on that as a new skill set.
The real problem, running through almost all these tales, is that the events, specifically the violent events, are driven by female jealousy. It is so often a stepmother that we tend to mistakenly regard it as a comment on blood ties. It pleases me to picture the Brothers Grimm as an alt-right version of Beavis and Butthead, laughing their arses off at having immortalised yet another story that shows the world as the exact opposite of how it actually is. Arguably, the way to turn the canon on its head is not to approach the stories directly at all, but to create a competing narrative, a stock of stories in which fathers and stepfathers and slighted wizards attack their sons and appropriate their futures with long-range curses and elaborate vindictiveness.
Isabelle is running from a monster already. The monster she was betrothed to, handsome to look upon, but vile enough to ruin her for any other man in the most demeaning and dehumanizing way. What had Isabelle got them into in this dark and dank castle? In an act of a seriously ill and delirious man, her father makes a mistake that causes Adam to literally toss him into his dungeon like the beast he appears to be.
It will be that act that reminds him of the love of family as Isabelle makes a bargain in hopes of saving her father. It will be a bargain that will open both of their eyes to the meaning of true beauty far beyond the mere flesh. Prepare to be horrified, to feel uncomfortable at times and to be charmed by the resiliency of blossoming love.
Demeter wants us to feel more than the enchantment of a fairy tale romance. She wants us to react with more than sighs as she adds some dark reality to her tale. All the better to see how love can transform two lonely souls into one powerfully bonded love. I cannot recommend this one enough! Definitely a gem to be uncovered! March 15, Publisher: View all 7 comments. A perfect retelling of one of the most famous fairy tales.
This version doesn't involve talking teapots or enchanted roses, but this retelling is still beyond magical. Prince Adam isn't a hairy beast with sharp teeth. He is just a man with a painful past. On the outside, he has scars all over his body from being burned.
On the inside, he is hiding from civilization and himself. He doesn't trust anyone. If he is a monster, it is because others made him that way. When Isabelle and her ill father stumbled onto his doorsteps during a blizzard, he tried to turn them away.
But she held her head high and refused to be ignored. Eventually, their hearts thawed, and a relationship stronger than any spell was created. This book isn't for young adults because there are some steamy scenes towards the end. And as the Prince has never been with a woman before, he fantasizes a lot about Isabelle. I loved the story and the way the prince desired to be a better man all because of Isabelle.
There were some moments where it was a little repetitive. For example, the story kept bringing up dust motes flying in the air. There were also some abrupt stops when the two were making out. But overall, I enjoyed every second, and I can't wait to read more by Rachel L. View all 6 comments.
Mar 01, Julie rated it it was amazing Shelves: I've never been super excited about fairy tale retellings.
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I'm not really sure why that is but I have a pretty good feeling that it's because when you grow up hearing stories or watching movies about these fairy tales, you grow attached. Beauty and the Beast was a big one for me. I adore that Disney movie and it's hard to believe that it can be improved upon. So when Rachel Demeter sent me a message asking me to give her newest novel a read, I was a bit nervous. What if I picked it up and abso I've never been super excited about fairy tale retellings.
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What if I picked it up and absolutely hated it? That's a reader's worst nightmare. But that's not how it turned out. First of all, the cover is absolutely beautiful. I'm definitely a cover-judger. Now on to the most important part As I started reading, I kept finding myself sitting on the edge of my chair, just waiting for this book to mimic Beauty and the Beast. I was just so sure that it was going to happen and I think that it really took something away from those first few chapters.
I ended up stopping and going back to the beginning but without the jaded thoughts. Because not once did it mimic Beauty and the Beast. Of course it was reminiscent but it never went to mimicry. It was so much more. This is what Beauty and the Beast should have been. It's probably what it would have been if it had been written for an adult audience. Isabelle was the perfect heroine. She was the perfect combination of contradictions. She was so very strong but at the same time, very fragile.
She was extremely brave yet skittish. She loved beauty but also saw the beauty in flaws. She was exactly what I envisioned our beloved Belle would be like. He has put up these walls around himself and his heart, refusing to let anyone in. Getting to experience Prince Adam as he tries to traverse the rocky landscape of his transforming life was something I wish I could get back. I want that first read magic again because it was absolutely phenomenal. I don't want to say too much about the story itself because I don't want to ruin any of the many surprises. All I will say is that it is a story that will stay with me.
20 Must-Read Fairy Tale Retellings for Adults
I'll definitely be rereading this one and I absolutely cannot wait until the next book in the series comes out because THIS is what Rachel Demeter was meant to do. These fairy tale retellings. It blew me out of the water and I'm so excited about this little sub-genre but I know I can't read something from someone else because it just won't be as good. Just have to wait for the next one from Demeter. And it won't be a patient wait! Mar 09, Myla rated it it was amazing. Prince Adam Delacroix spends his adult life in hiding after a tragic event befallen his family, leaving him orphaned and physically scarred.
Even though Isabelle has two step-sisters, they are more of a burden than help, they are always a Prince Adam Delacroix spends his adult life in hiding after a tragic event befallen his family, leaving him orphaned and physically scarred. Even though Isabelle has two step-sisters, they are more of a burden than help, they are always asking for things for her father to give to them. Travelling throughout the night, unexpected storm came and Isabelle has no choice but to stop and look for a shelter and came across a Gothic castle.
She knocks and the door opens… a tall figure wearing a cloak appears and annoyed at the same time. After a time, Adam reluctantly gives in and let Isabelle and her father stay. While staying in the castle, something happened and Isabelle blames it all to Adam.
They continue to mind their own business, but as time goes by, Isabelle discovers the real Adam behind the scars and Adam, who admire the beauty and grace of Isabelle from afar. Without a doubt they are in love!!!
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After learning what happened, Adam went out and searching for his beloved Isabelle. I was amazed how beautiful it was flawlessly written turning a classic story into this edgy, dark and sexy story is just brilliant. The pacing is just right and the characters are well defined! This is my first book by Author Rachel L. Demeter and what an introduction it was. Time well spent reading this book and looking forward to read more story written by this author.
ARC was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. Feb 26, Lisa Jayne rated it really liked it. He brought the darkness. That, in addition to it being one of my favourite fairy tales meant that I was more than happy to read and review this latest book by Rachel L Demeter. In my opinion this author has done a gorgeous job at retelling this popular fairy tale and I'm glad to say that I was happily lost in a world of days gone by. What did I love? I was pleasantly surprised by my engagement with this book, even though I knew the path that the story would take, I was still entertained and pinned to the pages of this novel.
I loved the light and dark of the story telling and I was most certainly sold on this hero finding his way from darkness to true love. Plenty of action, brilliant story telling and a hero and heroine to die for. Overall this is a lovely historical romance that I have to say won me some happy reading hours. This book was thoroughly enjoyed by myself, I just had a few niggles that wouldn't let go of me to allow a five star rating. One of the issues I had was some of the repetition of words used throughout the story telling and once I'd noticed it, sadly it distracted me from time to time.
I also would have liked to have had some length in parts of the story telling to fill some of the gaps that I found in the plot. However, these were minor quibbles and nothing that should put a romance reader off giving this book a chance. All in all a really fabulous reading experience and a solid four star rating.
Those romance readers who adore the beauty and the beast fairy tale should enjoy this book as much as I have. With just the right amount of heat and a lot of swoon I was one happy reader. Apr 01, Natalie The Biblioholic rated it really liked it Shelves: Prince Adam Delacroix has lived a life of solitude in a secluded castle for 25 years, ever since he witnessed the massacre of his family during the revolt. His solitary existence is disrupted when Isabelle and her sick father seek shelter from a storm.
After what he perceives as a transgression against his hospitality, Adam locks her father away in the dungeon. And then we all kind of know what happens next. I like how the author took artistic license of the classic tale and spun her own twists and turns. There was no true magic here but real magic took place. The magic of love. Yeah, that does sound pretty corny, but it doesn't make it any less true.
Adam was disfigured and no magic spell was going to change that, however, Isabelle was able to see beyond that to the beauty that was at the core of this man. It was wondrous to be able to watch them fall together. For years, Adam's heart was full of anger, bitterness and resentment. With Isabelle he was able to start replacing them with hope and love. The short and sweet of it is this: March 15, Genre: Dual - 3rd person Steam: Standalone - Book 1 of the Fairy Tale Retellings series View all 32 comments. Mar 04, Brigitte rated it it was amazing Shelves: Beauty of the Beast is a poignant fairy tale which reflects society's outlook on beauty, power and wealth.
Adam DeLacroix has lived in seclusion since witnessing the slaughter of his family when he was barely eleven years old, twenty five years ago. Stranger, his dog is the only constant in his life in the shadows. Isabelle lives with her father and her two wicked step sisters. Her father's health is Beauty of the Beast is a poignant fairy tale which reflects society's outlook on beauty, power and wealth. Her father's health is on a rapid decline and her engagement to Vicomte Raphael Dumont helps with the situation.
Not an ideal decision. Raphael is more or less holding Isabelle to ransom but when her father realises that he is not who he pretends to be, he comes up with a plan. The only way they can put this plan in motion is by getting help from Raphael. This is where he really shows his cruelty and lack of compassion. Desperate to get away, Isabelle and her father embark on a journey where they are caught in a storm. On spotting a derelict chateau, they see this as an opportunity to have shelter from this storm. Adam, answers their call but is not very welcoming. Isabelle puts her foot down as the weather is aggravating her father's already poor health.
Adam relents and gives them shelter. Isabelle is intrigued by the whole set up and its surrounding darkness. Her father does something totally out of character, resulting in Adam losing his temper. His behaviour is frightening and he shows his face for the first time. Isabelle's initial reaction is fear and maybe a little disgust! Things take a turn for the worse and Isabelle blames Adam. Then she sees another side of him which makes her curious. Adam is compelled by her beauty and kindness. He had forgotten that love still existed.
Isabelle is just about to change all that. Isabelle starts to see what lies beneath Adam's surface and they start a companiable relationship. Soon the attraction between them grows and Adam realises that Isabelle is not like everyone else. They start to trust each other and he reveals his past and his true identity.
In turn, Isabelle tells him the truth about the reason for undertaking this journey. They start this beautiful relationship and believe that they are safe in their little world when betrayal brings danger to their doorstep. Adam becomes aware of what's happened and he has no choice but to leave the shadows if he wishes to save the day. The ugly truth of the situation infuriates him and violence ensues.
Will he succeed in his mission and have the life that they both crave? This fairy tale is a rollercoaster of a journey. It shows that appearance can be deceiving. It's portrayed in such a way that I could feel the emotions with every turn of events. The characters are described in a very realistic manner.
From the wicked step sisters to the cold blooded Raphael and his side kick, Vivian. There are some sensual moments but it's not just about sex but about true feelings and unconditional love between two people from different worlds. The epilogue is fantastic and even then I wanted more. I absolutely loved this emotive and memorable tale. I was kindly issued with an eARC from the author and the views expressed are my personal opinion. I was offered this book in exchange for an honest review, and once I started reading it This is my first book that I've read with this author, and it's like she knew that I adore Beauty and the Beast.
I think she's psychic??! That being said, if anyone is a fan of the classic, Beauty and the Beast, you have to give this book a try because you won't be disappointed! Demeter is very good at describing everything, she makes you feel like you're actually in the book with the characters, experiencing what they're feeling and what not. Also, it flowed very nice. For Isabelle to really be strong and find herself, she needs to get her and her father away from the antagonist of the story Raphael.
Did I mention the author is good at making you feel what the characters are feeling? Because you will really dislike that man! I fell in love with his character. Apr 02, Elizabeth rated it really liked it Shelves: With a severely damaged hero both physically and emotionally and a beautiful young maiden, this retelling of the classic tale Beauty and the Beast held me captive the entire time.
The painful memories of his past haunt him day in and day out. Living a life of solitude has left him completely devoid of human contact or affection. Destined to live a painfully lonely life, he has found comfort in creating music, and his sole companionship has been his dog. When a young girl and her ailing father show up at his doorstep, he is frightened and outraged by their presence in his world. Please come back to me Despite the painful existence of her two evil step sisters, Isabelle has found peace in her simple way of life. When her family's financial situation takes a turn for the worse, she is forced to agree to marry the wealthy Vicomte Raphael Dumont.
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Although she has tried to accept the upcoming nuptials, Raphael is a monster and has made no secret of his plans to make her life miserable. When Isabelle sees an opportunity for an escape, she takes it! Isabelle and her father venture out into the darkness. When a storm causes them to find shelter, she ends up trading one monster for another. But as you know sometimes things are not at all as they seem! And yet, Isabelle and Adam create an entirely new story full of romance, tenderness, and friendship.
The setting comes to life with the rich description full of dark and bright colors. The characters are complex with their broken past and a strong desire for a better future. Although I found myself drawing connections to the original story, I found this retelling to be even more fascinating and touching. The sexual tension that blooms between Isabelle and Adam is off the charts! Adam and Isabelle both find a way to discover passion, beauty, and love together. The supporting characters enhanced the tale greatly with their love or disdain for Adam and Isabelle.
The blend of action, suspense, and romance was well dispersed throughout the read, and anyone who enjoys a broken hero finding love will devour every word of this beautifully crafted tale! Overall, Beauty of the Beast is sure to delight romance fans who enjoy a beautiful fairy tale and good overcoming evil. This is my first book by Rachel L. Demeter, and now that I have had a taste, I am anxiously waiting for more!
View all 25 comments. Mar 03, Kelsey rated it it was amazing Shelves: Demeter has yet to disappoint with her outstanding writing techniques, and pulling a reader into her work. Seeing as Beauty and the Beast is one of my all time favorite fairy tales, this novel was a must read for me. The cover art was outstandingly beautiful, and really captured the original tale of the beast that lives in the broken down castle, forever broken, and forgotten, a human being rests in the shadows where he watches the world pass him by.
Other than a lone servant that has stood by his side for twenty-five years, Adam Delacroix, is a mysterious, powerful character who was absolutely stunning to fall in love with. In a town, about two days away from the broken castle is a mademoiselle. Her looks, and knowledge, and quick wit are all adored by the townsfolk.
She's so much more than what meets the eye. Isabelle Rose was a well written, heart breaking, and heart mending character that saw beneath all the stories, and rumors, and saw what Adam really is. But that isn't after she accuses him of being a monster, and blaming him for something that was completely out of his control - just like his life had been spiraling out of control before she graced him with her presence.
So, a little bit of heartache, a little bit of romance which was completely hot, by the way , a little bit of back stabbing nonsense by a friend that never should have stuck their nose in in the first place. What I thoroughly enjoyed about this novel was that the story kicked back and forth between Adam's voice, Isabelle's voice, as well as two other characters voices. Never once did it get confusing. Now, you see I used voice, and not point of view? I felt that the characters spoke instead of saw. The tense of writing was perfect, and went so well with the time period, and feel of the novel.
As the age old fairy tale goes, a fair maiden stumbles upon a man who is not who he seems to be upon the first meeting. Cold, heartless, and not kind towards visitors, Adam Delacroix has had so much happen in his short life span, that when the beauty that is Isabelle Rose knocks on his castle doors, he hesitates to let her and her ailing father in from the storm that raged behind them. But they were running away from more than just the rain, and cold weather that drug them to the door of the castle. So, so much more. Adam takes pity on them, and things turn worse for the wear when he catches what seems to be a teacup disappearing beneath a cloak.
From there, Isabelle sees the man for what he truly is, and lashes out, calling him a monster. I'll leave it there for there is so much more to this novel than meets the eye. As I said, Rachel's writing never ceases to amaze me, and I am so looking forward to this series of favorite fairy tale novels with their dark twists around every corner.
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Mar 03, A Hopeless Romantic's Booklandia rated it it was amazing. The fact that it was a retelling of Beauty and the Beast , my favorite fairy tale, only made me want to read it even more - and wow - was it good. Although good is too weak a word to describe it, it really was amazing and I positively loved it! Isabelle is every bit as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. She's kind, sweet and compassionate, but she's also so strong and I loved Ms.
She's kind, sweet and compassionate, but she's also so strong and fierce. She doesn't back down from anyone or from doing what's right. Isabelle is unflinchingly loyal, she's down-to-earth, and she truly has a heart of gold. She is such a wonderful person and I have no doubts that you'll love her like I do. And Adam, oh, Adam - it was just impossible not to love him.
Yes, he has his horrible, mean, gruff moments, but he's much more than what he appears to be. He's strong and confident and dignified, but he also has his insecurities and doubts too. Adam is the sweetest guy ever - he never takes Isabelle for granted and you can tell that the sun rises and sets on her for him. Adam might have broken my heart at times, but he put it back together and completely stole it. He's every bit as wonderful as Isabelle and I'm so glad he found his Beauty.
Beauty of the Beast took me longer than I anticipated to finish, but through no fault of its own because it really was captivating, exciting, and enchanting. It was tragic and heart wrenching and made my heart ache so much, it made my eyes sting with tears, and it made me furious for all the trials that Isabelle and Adam especially, had to face, but it wasn't all darkness and pain.
It was full of beauty, passion, and sweetness too. It made me laugh, it warmed my heart and it was just incredible. I absolutely loved it and I can't wait to read the next book in the series! Beauty of the Beast is the first book in the Fairy Tale Retellings , it's told mostly from Adam and Isabelle's POV, and they have a lovely happily-ever-after ending that will leave you with a smile on your face!
When the author reached out to me and informed me that it was a retelling but with a dark and gritty edge, I really wasn't sure what I was getting into. The same old bread and rolls to sell. Every morning just the same, since the morning that they came to this poor provincial town Anyways basically I was all set for a magical ride with adult characters but it turned out to be so much more than that. The strength of the story really is with the characters. Each of them is so complex and richly emotional.
Adam's restless and tortured nature and Isabelle's tenacity and Raphael's malice and cruelty are some of the first aspects to each of these characters that you are introduced to and which hook you from the start. You watched them grow and evolve and along the way, I felt that the writing did the same as well.
As feelings grew and different situations arose, the prose got more detailed and expressed feelings of loss, desperation and love with so much intent that you couldn't help but feel for them. It was raw and powerful and it really brought great dimension to the storyline. Thank the heavens this will be part of a series because I look forward to reading more by Rachel in the future. Hopefully a Cinderella or Little Mermaid retelling??? I would be all over either one but The Little Mermaid would be my number one pick lol. I'm a fish at heart: Happy Reading everyone and I hope you all enjoy this book as much as I did.
Feb 24, Kahea rated it it was amazing Shelves: The author did a beautiful job of keeping those special little moments that a true fan will instantly recognize while giving it her own dark and edgy touch that gives a refreshing and emotional spin to the story. I have to fully understand what happen to turn the character into the monster that even they think they are and feel their pain, so that I can want them to climb out of the darkness and the author gave that to right off the bat and god did I hurt for Adam.
Brutal is an understatement when it comes to what Adam went through, soul crushing is a better description and though there were moments where I wanted to smack him, what came through was what an amazing heart he had. She is a kind and sweet girl in every way that counts and it shines through in her actions. She has faults just like anyone else, but she tends to be more kind than cruel and appreciates the little things versus having the world handed to her on a silver platter. But I loved how they learned each other and saw beyond what was on the outside and into each others hearts and souls.
This is my first read by the author and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was hooked from the start and had a very difficult time putting once I started it. The characters were all well developed and as much as I adored Adam and Isabelle there were characters that I wanted to gut with a spoon, which means the baddies of the story were also well written.
The disclaimer at the end of the description is tell the truth. This retelling is edgy and dark in some ways, so be prepared for it, but it also has that magical touch that makes your heart swoon and has you believing that fairy tales can come true. Mar 06, Esther rated it really liked it Shelves: What a take on the fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast. This is definitely the adult version with a lot of angst, a gothic twist and strong emotional depth.
Oh, also sexual tension and c h e m i s t r y!!! Isabella is beautiful and kind hearted. She lives with her not so nice stepsisters and cares for her ill Father. She is engaged to a wicked suitor who she goes to for a favor. Isabella's father wishes Isabella fears this is his last dying wish to visit a merchants fair and they need transportation. Adam is a scarred prince who experienced a tragic and horrific childhood.
We open with the scene of this playing out and it's heart breaking to read. During Isabella and her fathers journey to the fair they are caught in a storm and they seek shelter in the decrepit castle. Isabella will have non of that and convinces Adam to provide them shelter. The beginning of Isabella and Adam's relationship starts with heartbreak as Isabella father dies. The two have so much pain, heartbreak and trust issues that it would seems almost impossible to insurmountable to overcome. But as the two come to know each other, slowly and carefully revealing their heart and thoughts to each other, they begin a healing process.
But there are forces and people that are out to destroy, hurt and kill them. What a rich and emotional read. It's got a dark feel but yet you have a sense of this promise of hope and happiness just in reach. The characters are so multi faceted, with rich depth and deep emotion. Chemistry and sexual tension jump off the pages. The feel and scenes suck you into the time period as well as what each individual is experiencing and feeling.
The evil characters and villains you will truly hate. Your heart will ache for each of these characters. You will cheer for their well deserved HEA. Well written and a page turner. First time reading this author. Demeter is book One in the "Fairy Tale Retellings" series. This did remind me allot of 'The Beauty and the Beast' story but with a much darker and hotter story line. Isabelle lived with her father and two step sisters. Isabelle had thought she fell in love with Raphael but soon learned that as handsome as he was he was actually a monster inside.
Now she tries to do everything to avoid him and doesn't 'Beauty of the Beast' by Rachel L. Now she tries to do everything to avoid him and doesn't want to marry him. Isabelle step-sister are very mean to her in addition to the hardships she has to go through along with having her father very sick.
Isabelle and her father go traveling where they are caught in a storm that leads them to Adams castle. Adam has his own issue that he is dealing with. Adam has cut himself off from everyone but one childhood friend. Adam was badly burned with his parents and sister died after being betrayed Adam was the only one to get out along with his childhood friend.
But the scars and they anger has left him a beast. So when Isabelle and her father come to his door he tries to turn them away. But Isabelle is not having that and goes on in. There her father does something that angers Adam and he puts him into the dungeon overnight. But with her father so sick and the weather they were out made it so that her father didn't survive the night.
Adam plans on keeping Isabelle as his mistress and Isabelle is to upset to fight him. But along the way they start to interact and things start to change. But will Isabelle's past come back for her? View all 8 comments. Mar 06, Barbara rated it it was amazing Shelves: A brilliant and breathtakingly beautiful reimagining of Beauty and the Beast!!! Fans of the iconic fairy tale can now relive the story as a grown up. I loved the dark twists. I loved every character. I loved the Gothic setting and imagery.
And wow, the writing style - maybe I loved that most of all. The descriptions were vivid, beautiful, and often dreamlike. My heart ached for both Isabelle and Adam - Demrov's forgotten prince - and I admit to ugly crying on more than one occasi All the stars!!! My heart ached for both Isabelle and Adam - Demrov's forgotten prince - and I admit to ugly crying on more than one occasion. But every tear was well worth the sacrifice; Demeter has truly created an unforgettable story while retaining the heart and many of the nuances of the original tale.
If you're a fan of Beauty and the Beast or historical romances, and are open to experiencing some enchanting dark realism, then this is the one to read! Feb 20, Michaelene rated it it was amazing Shelves: I am blown away by this remarkably haunting novel. It explores the depths of pain and happiness, darkness and light. A story that will stay with me. Isabelle makes a deal with the devil in order to keep her father healthy and her stepsisters cared for. Her chance for them to start a new life. Only her father gets deathly ill and the only house for miles around is a decrepit castle.
Adam lives in solitude. Perhaps not at all. He makes a bargain with her. If she stays, she stays for good. But things get complicated and sometimes, love works in mysterious ways.
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