AUTHOR: DHONIELLE CLAYTON • CATEGORY: YOUNG ADULT / FANTASY • PAGES: 440
NOTE- I requested a review copy of The Belles from the brilliant people at Hachette in exchange for my honest review. If you wish to see my review policy you can find it here.
In the opulent world of Orleans, the people are born grey and damned, and only a Belle’s powers can make them beautiful.
Camellia Beauregard wants to be the favourite Belle – the one chosen by the queen to tend to the royal family.
But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favourite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. Behind the gilded palace walls live dark secrets, and Camellia soon learns that her powers may be far greater – and far darker – than she ever imagined.
When the queen asks Camellia to break the rules she lives by to save the ailing princess, she faces an impossible decision: protect herself and the way of the Belles, or risk her own life, and change the world forever.
This isn’t your usual young adult fantasy where girl goes to palace, falls for a guy, gets in trouble with the royal family. Well, to be fair it has all of that but it is so much more. This book makes you think really hard about the world we live in and the strange amount of importance that is put on being one person’s version of beautiful.
This book has some scenes that are hard to read because they show humanity at its worst. This isn’t simply a work of puff and pretty dresses it questions the lengths people go to achieve “beauty” or what society has labelled as beautiful anyway. I think that this series will have a very important message in its conclusion and I implore teenage girls to pick this up and give it a go.
Camellia (our lead) is quite naive about the world she lives in but her and the remaining of the Belles learn quick smart that not everything is as it seems. I loved the relationships between the Belles themselves. The intricate nature of love and jealousy was brilliant, I only wish there was more of it. Hopefully there will be more interaction between all the girls in the coming books.
Brilliant read. Please give it a go and make sure you read this book all the way to the end! The authors note to readers is one of the most honest and powerful things I have ever read. It is stunning, raw and so emotional.
Overall Rating:￼￼￼￼ ￼￼☕☕☕☕☕ 5/5 teacups
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Happy reading x