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Beast (Avon Romantic Treasure) Kindle Edition

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Length: 388 pages
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

When young, beautiful Louise Vandermeer hears that the prince her parents have arranged for her to marry is ugly and crippled, she agrees to have a shipboard affair with a mysterious Arab pasha who only meets her in total darkness. Unbeknownest to her, the pasha is really Charles d'Harcourt, who happens to be her fiance. Both she and Charles are consumed with guilt over the affair. The first part of the book is a darkly erotic version of "Beauty and the Beast." Unfortunately, neither the hero nor the heroine is very likable when the story opens. As the author's first title as Judith Ivory, the book is extremely well written; Judy Cuevas's Bliss (Jove, 1995) was a 1996 Rita finalist in the Long Historical category. She lives in Miami, Florida.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Judith Ivory's work has won numerous awards, including Romance Writers of America's RITA, Top Ten Books of the Year, and Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice. With two degrees in mathematics, Ms. Ivory never expected to make her living writing novels. "How did this enormous stroke of luck happen? To live off imagination and invention? You'd think something so much fun would be illegal or at least fattening. I can't figure out what went so right."


Product Details

  • File Size: 1171 KB
  • Print Length: 388 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins e-books (February 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: February 1, 2011
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0042FZVQW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,397 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By M. I. on January 4, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Louise Vandermeer is beautiful. Beautiful and bored with it. Bored with her beauty, bored with her life...Until her well-meaning parents put her on a ship bound for France where she will meet the man that she has been promised to - Charles d'Harcourt. Louise has never even seen Charles - she doesnt want to. She has absolutely no interest in the arranged marriage, but has given into her parents wishes...still, Louise cant help but be intrigued when she meets a mysterious man aboard the ship. A man that she meets only in the dark. Louise is swept away by him as he becomes her first lover, though he never permits her to look upon his face. For Louise, who has always used her beauty as a crutch, this time in the dark is a real awakening...she feels she can finally be herself and she falls hard for her mystery man.

Charles d'Harcourt never intended to lie. But when he stumbles upon his intended bride and gets a good look at her without her knowledge and overhears her less than complimentary opinion of him - without having met him - well, he devises a plan to teach the young girl a lesson. He will trick her...Louise has no idea that Charles is on the very same ship...so, he approaches her in the dark. His plan is to seduce her and reveal himself only once he is sure that she has fallen for him and expose her true shallow nature. But as Charles spends more time with Louise and she opens up to him, he finds himself the butt of his own joke...he has fallen in love with his own fiance.

"Beast" was a GREAT book. Yet again, Ivory is brilliant. Book after book, I am seeing a pattern...her heroes are UNBELIEVABLE. I love EVERY one of them! Charles was no exception. He had such a fantastic mixture of confidence and insecurity. He saw Louises beauty, but he really did love her for HER...
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By C.D. on April 8, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
People tend to feel strongly about Ivory's work, one way or the other, and Beast will be no exception. Be prepared to really think, even long after you set the book down. Set in the early 1900's on both a luxury oceanliner and Mediterranean France, Beast stars the disfiguered, Charles (who lives in a state of semi-self-denyal about his looks) and Louise (Lulu), who is eighteen and acts it. Louise is beautiful to mythic heights and rich beyond belief, but instead of acting like so many romance novel heroines (Snow White and Mother Theresa rolled into one), she acts like any gorgeous, wealthy, eighteen year old might act. She flirts with handsome young men, she loves jewelery and rich foods, and she doesn't fall instantly in love with her tragic prince. At least, she doesn't think so. And despite her stunning beauty, Louise finds herself wishing she weren't always judged by it, and wondering if she has anything of worth to offer besides the physical.

I've read reviews by readers who thought Louise was cold and calculating, some who called her an outright witch, but I found her refreshingly real. She tries very hard to put her heart into being "good" and doing "what's right", and grows up quite a bit by the end of the book. Charles, I have to love because his motives are truly all out of self-preseration. Surrounded by mirrors, he doesn't really *see* himself until the end of the book. This is a wonderful character study of two people who loathe being judged by outward appearances, and it produces interesting results.
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31 of 37 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 9, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
(...)
This book left me frustrated in so many ways, I'm not sure where to begin. Unlike most of the reviewers here, I preferred the second half of the book to the first because I almost couldn't stand reading what seemed an unending account of Louise falling in love with part lie part self-created fantasy. Some may have thought it romantic that she never saw Charles and yet fell for him, but given that this is a girl bored with life, it seemed she fell for the slightly forbidden idea of sex with a foreigner as well as someone who didn't seem to care that much about her appearances, the latter being especially untrue given Charles' constant and tiresome adoration of Louise's beauty. Hey, it's nice to know the hero thinks the heroine is pretty, but especially since the whole point of this book was supposed to be about looking beyond the outer facade, I could have done with about 20 *less* pages devoted to worshipping Louise's physical perfection.
My next big problem with this book was that it wasted so many pages on verbose descriptions of settings and Louise's glowing skin, and hastily skimmed over all the parts that really needed more attention:
1. After Charles and Louise are married, things are tense between them, mostly because Louise finds Charles hideous. Charles is restricted to kissing Louise's glorious wrists--but not too many times or he'll get a whack with her trusty fan. Then suddenly, out of the blue, in a scene on the beach, Louise admits that she is "fond of his appearance" and thinks she might even love Charles. Huh? When did that happen? Maybe time has passed and things have happened that the reader is not privvy to, but I thought the whole point of a love story is to *show* two people falling in love, not tell us after it's happpened.
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