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Dragon Shifter Beauty and the Beast

I’ll admit that I love stories that are new takes on classic tales, so I was intrigued by this dragon-shifter adaptation of Beauty and the Beast. We meet the heroine, Teagan, as she’s bumbling her way through a swordplay class. She meets the hero, Ash, in the parking lot when she mistakenly thinks that he might be ready to attack her. Even though she only has a practice sword, she approaches him like a fiery warrior goddess protecting herself. Ash calms her down, and they start to have an interesting discussion, but when the wind blows his hood from his face, she sees his scars. She gasps, and he thinks that she’s just another one who can’t or won’t be able to see past his physical deformity.

What a delightful reimagining of Beauty and the Beast! Both Teagan and Ash have wounds, some interior and some exterior. I love how both of them were able to see past the physical right away. Poor Teagan has such self-esteem issues that she couldn’t see her unusual features as anything but ugly, but Ash could only see beauty. Teagan is smart, nerdy, and a little bit clumsy… and really quite endearing in her awkwardness, both verbal and physical. How can you not love a character who is so enamored with Queen Boadicea and ancient Ireland? And Ash, he truly believes himself to be unlovable, and I adored how the author had him wrestle with his inner dragon when confronted with this woman who could mean so much to them both.

If you enjoy retellings of classic stories with lots of heartfelt emotion and realistic, wounded characters, you might find this book a compelling, sweet (but steamy) read.