Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Michele Israel Harper: Kill the Beast

By Kelly Bridgewater

Kill the Beast: Book One of the Beast Hunters

Ro remembers the castle before. Before the gates closed. Before silence overtook the kingdom. 
Before the castle disappeared. Now it shimmers to life one night a year, seen by her alone.

Once a lady, now a huntress, Ro does what it takes to survive—just like the rest of the kingdom plunged into despair never before known.
But a beast has overtaken the castle. A beast that killed the prince and holds the castle and kingdom captive in his cruel power. A beast Ro has been hired to kill.

Thankful the mystery of the prince’s disappearance has been solved, furious the magical creature has killed her hero, Ro eagerly accepts the job to end him.

But things are not as they seem.

Trapped in the castle, a prisoner alongside the beast, Ro wonders what she should fear most: the beast, the magic that holds them both captive, or the one who hired her to kill the beast.

A Beauty and the Beast retelling.

From Goodreads

My Thoughts:

Beauty and the Beast is my favorite Disney cartoon. Maybe because of the ability for Belle to see past the beast and see into his heart. Maybe because of the catchy music. Maybe because of the love story. But probably because of the massive library the beast gives to Belle. What bookworm doesn't dream and envy Belle for having access to that massive library? In Michele Israel's Harper's first novel in her Beast Hunters' series, Kill the Beast, she took me for a ride back to the familiar story, but with a twist. A twist I really enjoyed.

The writing is clear and concise. I really enjoy how the story is told from Ro's perspective for majority of the story. I learned her inner struggle and felt her external and internal pain. She brought Ro to life with her ability to dive into her mind. Also, the setting of this hidden and enchanted castle sprung to life on the pages. It was definitely a weird castle with many twists and turns. Ro barely ever visited the same place in the castle twice.

What happened to Belle while she hung out in the castle? That is exactly, in my honest opinion, what Harper does with Kill the Beast. She explains and shows what kept Ro there. What happened to Ro while she was there? She dug deep into the background of the curse and gave valid reasons for why the town didn't remember this castle being there. She showed the past of how the curse happened in a unique and different way. The story also ended in a twist I didn't see coming. I really enjoyed this story. Harper's writing style and the story itself kept me spellbound. I had a hard time putting it down. I took it shopping with me and while my husband went into the store, I read in the car.

The characters of Ro, Cosette, and the beast were unique and strong. Ro is a strong, yet determined heroine planning to support her sister by killing the beast. Her entire reasoning for hunting is to provide a better life for her little sister. I admire her ability to think of others over herself. Cosette is a pawn in a web of lies. I feel bad for her. The Beast was a selfish man who needed to think of others instead of himself. Through most of the novel, he is caught in the curse, so he has a hard time remembering anything. Hopefully, he catches for the better for the rest of his life, not just to end the curse.

Overall, Kill the Beast is a fascinating tale with enduring characters. Harper wrapped me in an enchantment as I spent two days lost in the castle roaming the world and learning about the curse with Ro. I believe this is one of my favorite books of the year. I anxiously await book two in the series. Fans of Melanie Dickerson's fairy tales should go out and purchase this novel.

I received a complimentary copy of Kill the Beast by Michele Israel  from Love2ReadLove2Write Publishing, but the opinions stated are all my own.

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About the Author:
From Amazon

Michele Israel Harper is an addict. To books, to writing--if it includes ink and paper, she's all over it. When she found out she could write books instead of simply read them...well, let's just say she's rarely been seen outside of her office since.

She adores her writer's group, the Heartland Christian Writers, and has no idea what she would do without the American Christian Fiction Writers. Being voted treasurer for her local Indiana Chapter of ACFW just about sent her into a happy coma. Which, you know, she's very much familiar with since that happens at the end of every good book she reads.

Visit her website at if you want to know more about her! (Taken from Amazon.)

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