Sunday, January 20, 2013
Reading:Belle: The Charming Gift by Ellie O'Ryan
This time Belle's book centers around the story of Belle and the rest of the castle planning a ball for the winter solstice. While Belle chooses a dress to wear, she thinks she sees a bracelet similar to one her father made her as a child. After telling her new friends about the bracelet and what it meant to her, she becomes solemn, for she misses her father dearly. Mrs. Potts and the rest of the gang decide to cheer Belle up by recreating the bracelet to show her that she is welcome in the castle and is apart of their family now. While the story is very much about Belle and her wish to feel at home, the story is also very much focused on the objects in the castle...if not more focused on than Belle, specifically Chip. Each object, and the Beast, must make a charm for Belle's bracelet. Chip decides to help out everyone else with their charms and almost forgets about his own but his friends come to the rescue!
While the story was great and has a great lesson to teach (which I expected), I definitely was disappointed at the lack of Belle and the Beast interaction. Belle's previous book had much more personality and depth to their relationship while this book mostly kept Belle and their relationship behind the scenes. I also thought that the Beast was definitely out of character. But, this is a kids book and being a Disney princess book I think it is safe to say that the author wasn't going for much character development or plot development. It was written purely for the franchise and as a tool for learning life's moral lessons.
Overall, it was a very enjoyable read. The story was very magical and the artwork was gorgeous but I wish there would have been more of a focus on Belle and the Beast's relationship instead of having Belle behind the scenes. I will give this book 4 out of 5 stars. If only these books were made into a Beauty and the Beast sequel (or mid-quel). Anything is better than Belle's Enchanted Tales. That was a train wreck!