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Beauty and the Beast, Book Review, Dark, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Scarred hero, Scarred heroine, Series, Shapeshifters

Craving Beauty (Wylder Tales #1) by Jennifer Silverwood

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Nineteen-year-old Vynasha’s life is no fairy tale. The fire that killed her sisters was her fault, and the magick that saved her nephew cannot heal their scars. They shouldn’t have survived, and the villagers either fear or loathe them. Until a mysterious stranger saves her, giving Vynasha the key to finding the only family they have left.

With nothing to lose, Vynasha dares the journey into the forbidden Wylderland. Through dangers untold, she makes her way to the forgotten city, but more than ghosts linger in the castle. A wicked curse shadows the land, shadows whisper that the one to break their curse has come, and a beastly prince makes a bargain Vynasha cannot refuse:

Become the beast’s bride or become a monster herself.


Welcome to my stop on the Bewitching Book Tours’ Haunted Halloween Spooktacular. 

Beauty and the Beast has been a beloved fairytale for centuries (certainly one of my favorites), with countless adaptations and retellings. However, none have quite captured the eerie essence of the story like this dark fantasy reiteration.

Vynasha “Beauty” is a witch who magically grows roses in the winter and holds magical gifts that others fear. After losing her family to a fire where she and her precious nephew Wyll remained scarred, she takes the advice of a strange beggar and follows the growly voice in her head while braving the cursed Wylder Mountains to find her beloved brother Ceddrych. Her brother is the only one other than Wyll who loves her unconditionally and who promised to return home many months ago. Will she find her brother? Will they survive their journey? Will she ever find peace?

What Vynasha discovers in her quest is danger, enchantments, monsters, and betrayal. The castle she is drawn to holds many dark secrets, a curse, and beasts with the need for her magic. Nothing is as it seems and her choices are taken from her. When her transformation is complete and the lies are revealed, she is left alone once again to fend for herself…until fate intervenes. Will she be safe now or will her magic continue to hold her as an outcast? Woefully, readers will need to continue the journey in book two.

There are other protagonists and antagonists in the book including a Beast who woos Beauty and his servants who are withholding something sinister that is meant to be revealed slowly.

The dark and gritty tone sets this story apart because it is not afraid to delve into some of the more disturbing aspects of the original fairytale and add shocking twists and turns into the mix. This makes for a much more mature and insidious story than what we have come to expect from adaptations of this tale.

Overall, this dark fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast is a must-read for fans of the somber fantasy fairytale genre. It offers a fresh and unique take on a classic story, with complex characters and a well-crafted shadowy world. If you are looking for romance, there is attraction but nothing substantial, so I’m holding out for something more in the second installment.

Thank you to Ms. Silverwood for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.


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Jennifer Silverwood published her first novel, Silver Hollow, in 2012 and has been passionate about supporting the writing community ever since. By day she helps Qamber Designs bring authors’ books to life. By night, I moonlight as a book blogger & author.

Follow Jennifer on her website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Instagram, and Tumblr.


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2 thoughts on “Craving Beauty (Wylder Tales #1) by Jennifer Silverwood”

  1. Hey Sharon, thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts about Craving Beauty! I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed Vynasha’s journey and hope to see you at Scarred Beauty next March 😉 Happy reading!

    1. Thank you, Jennifer. It’s such a unique take on Beauty and the Beast and I can’t wait to read more about Vynasha and her adventures.

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