Title – ‘Ensnared’
Author – Rita Stradling
Publishing – May 23rd 2017 by Kindle Press
Pages – 380
Format – E-Book
Book Summary –
‘A Near-Future Retelling of Beauty and the Beast
Alainn’s father is not a bad man. He’s a genius and an inventor. When he’s hired to create the robot Rose, Alainn knows taking the money is a mistake.
Rose acts like a human. She looks exactly like Alainn. But, something in her comes out wrong.
To save her father from a five year prison sentence, Alainn takes Rose’s place. She says goodbye to the sun and goes to live in a tower no human is allowed to enter. She becomes the prisoner of a man no human is allowed to see.
Believing that a life of servitude lies ahead, Alainn finds a very different fate awaits her in the company of the strange, scarred recluse.’
NOTE; I received a copy of this e-book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
*Warning – Contains MINOR spoilers*
Where do I start with this book…? Basically I started reading it on a whim after figuring I should probably get to work on a bunch of the e-books I had simply sitting on my phone. As it was this was the first book of the bunch… and I read it in one go!
This is staged to be a near future ‘Beauty and the Beast’ retelling but definitely had it’s own colour and style… to the point where, having not looked up the book beforehand, I didn’t notice it was actually a retelling until after the fact. The book flowed really well for me, the writing style as well was easy to follow. Granted it isn’t the most captivating of books… but it was a light, fun.. sometimes not so fun… but primarily easy to read book. I generally don’t react outside of my head to a book but I’ll admit… this book had me smiling quite prominently at points. It really was just a simple story with ups and downs and lots of roundabouts.
Let me talk about the characters. Alainn… I really liked. It’s not often I find lead females I actually like… the majority of the time I will find them a bit lackluster. But Alainn definitely had some personality, she was sassy and stubborn, loyal and fun loving. I just clicked with her character really well… there was just something about her that made me smile. She just had some awesome lines and comebacks that gave her aura a really nice feel… even if she was a bit ‘broken’ because of her past at times. But I like that, whilst her past was addressed, she never let it fully consume her… until the plot line used that particular memory to stir things up later on in the book. But things were already stirring up before even that point… with Lorrcan!
First of, awesome name! But Lorrcan was definitely not the ‘Beast’ that’s represented in the classic story. I know that this is obviously a retelling and not a replica but still… apart from the scarred face, and the slightly closed off personality towards the start of his introduction, he wasn’t really all that beastly. But it worked. The story and the characters worked. Lorrcan was.. charming.. once he opened up. Confused and vulnerable at times most definitely but despite his lack of one on one physical human interaction you could tell he didn’t really have a nasty side to him. He was simply scared, closed off. But much like the classic story where Belle brings out the lighter side of the Beast… Alainn here brings out the love and warmth in Lorrcan. Even if he does initially think she’s a robot.
I know people have struggled with the fact he fell in love, and had a physical relationship *wink wink*, with Alainn and still thought she was a robot. But actually… when you look at the bigger picture it did kind of work. Granted the idea of humanity and robots having ‘human feelings’ wasn’t delved into as much as it probably should have been but… I think this book isn’t meant to be a ‘heavy’ read. It’s light with lots of fluff and a little bit of angst to balance things out. Plus Lorrcan had an extremely limited experience with actual human contact… so it does make sense he’d latch on to a ‘robot’ he had made to be as human like as possible whilst overlooking the things that actually made Alainn as human as you or I.
The futuristic element of this book, the robot AI, was actually slotted into place incredibly well. It made sense in the story. Alainn’s dad was the inventor, Rose was the robot gone bad, Rosebud was the good robot and little Blue was the adorable monkey robot we all want at home with us. The idea of robots is something very much of our time and basically the way it was put across in this story is very much a possibility for our future. It was integrated well and balanced out the ‘humanity’ in the book, it was basically balanced well with other elements. It was put across in terms that was easy for the reader to understand… especially if you’ve not got a love of codes and computers for example. It made sense, Rose was the ‘perfect robot’ with a hidden agenda, given too much of her own mind… too much power to work out a way to rid of humanity of exactly what makes us human. I did understand her actually, why she did what she did… but as it is with most villains, it’s the way they do things that makes them evil in the end.
To try to come to a close of this review… this book… is a light, easy read. I don’t think the idea was for this book to be complex or majorly thought provoking. Yes… there are indeed some questions which weren’t answered but… it’s fluffy with some angst. It’s a good ya read (I’m assuming it is ya)… although it does have some scenes of a sexual nature so maybe not for the younger of the ya audience. I’ll be honest it does have a ‘fan fiction’ kind of feel to it. But I think that might be one of the reasons why I connected with it so well… (I’m a avid fan fiction reading FYI!)… it had a decent plot line, lovable characters, the typical evil villains, the downfall and then the happy ending. Plus adorable Blue who I really do want to take home with me!
Basically… if you want a light read, something that has those ‘Beauty and the Beast’ elements whilst still having some original content… then give this book a try. I don’t think it’ll be a read of which people will be blown away by but it’s simple and easy… and whilst of course has it’s darker moments, is primarily a light hearted read.
Would I suggest this book to other bookworms?
If you like retelling’s that still have their own flavor then yes..
Am I completely in love with this book?
I really enjoyed it – and much like many of the ‘Beauty and the Beast’ retelling’s found myself falling for the ‘Beast’, Lorccan!
[I rate this book 3.5/5 stars]