Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Cloaked by Alex Flinn

Alex Flinn returns to the world of Beastly with her book Cloaked.  Although she doesn't return to the characters from that series, and aside from mention of the chat room for people who have been transformed by a curse, there's not a lot tying the two books together, so you don't need to have read one to jump in with Cloaked.

Instead of just one fairy tale, Flinn tackles four, and weaves them together skilfully.  The story centers around a frog prince transformation, but the main character, Johnny, is a bit of an unusual hero, since he's more of a shoemaker than royalty, and although he's aiding a princess, he's trying to get the frog prince back safely.

The story is complicated when Meg, Johnny's long-time best friend, starts to notice that strange things are happening around the hotel where they work.  And when she seems to know more than she should, Johnny can't help but be suspicious of her.

Wicked witches, curses, transformations, and heroics abound in this story of friendship, love, and loyalty.  Flinn's writing is witty and her characters are fresh and fully realized.  (An interesting side-note: The books are being rereleased with more typical YA covers now, haunted-looking girls striking tragic poses.  Although I recognize that it's a marketable trend, the new covers don't fit the tone or style of Flinn's books at all -- in my opinion anyway.  Her books are funny and playful and adventurous, and the covers are just a little too... tragic romancy.)

This is a great take on some lesser-known stories, so it's definitely one to check out if you're tired of Cinderella, Snow White, and Sleeping Beauty.  It's a lighter retelling, and a fairly quick read as well.  If you liked Beastly, you'll definitely like this one -- maybe even more.  (I liked the book Beastly much more than the movie, so don't let that stop you!)


  1. This book looks interesting, but I must confess, I was not a big fan of Beastly. Still, I will give it a try! :)

  2. The writing style is very similar. But I think this book is lighter. The hero has lost less at the beginning and although the stakes are high, I think he maintains a lighter attitude.

    Hope you'll stop back by and let me know what you think when you finish!