Series: Sleeping Beauty #4
Release Date: April 21, 2015
Source: Copy provided for honest review
Before E. L. James and Sylvia Day, there was Anne Rice: Discover Beauty’s Kingdom, the fourth novel in the bestselling Sleeping Beauty seriesMega-bestselling author Anne Rice, writing as A. N. Roquelaure, returns to the mysterious kingdom of Queen Eleanor in this new chapter of her Sleeping Beauty series. When the great queen is reported dead, Beauty and Laurent return to the kingdom they left twenty years before. Beauty agrees to take the throne, but she insists that all erotic servitude be voluntary. Countless eager princes, princesses, lords, ladies, and commoners journey to Beauty’s realm, where she and her husband usher in a new era of desire, longing, and ecstasy. Provocative and stirring, Rice’s imaginative retelling of the Sleeping Beauty myth will be adored by her longtime fans and new readers of erotica just discovering the novels.This book is intended for mature audiences.
I am putting Beauty's Kingdom aside with an extreme heavy heart. I even asked my friends to check for signs of the end of the world, Hell freezing over or pigs flying. This can't be happening...I can't be DNFing an Anne Rice book. Right?
Sadly, I am.
I have such fond memories of reading the original trilogy, I read them in my early twenties, shortly after getting married and having a baby. They were such a great escape and they opened my eyes to a new genre. I will always love and appreciate them.
That being said, I was extremely enthusiastic to read a new volume after all these years.
Disappointment sank in quickly, however.
The biggest issue I had from the start was the way the characters spoke and interacted with each other. I don't remember there being so many exclamations in the previous books, but it seems like every other sentence spoken here ends with a giant !. It kept throwing me off, wondering why everyone is so excited and yelling.
Then there is the extreme use of 'Oh,' at the beginning of so many of those same sentences.
Do I seem nit-picky? Maybe I am a bit, but this is Anne Rice. She's on a pretty high pedestal in my house.
I could have gotten past those issues fairly easily though if the story and characters had pulled me in. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case. I found the relationship between Beauty and Laurent...cold and unemotional. Beauty's first interactions with Alexi, left me with zero tingles. Lady Eva - I couldn't come to like at all.
While I think the future of the realm of sex slavery is mildly intriguing, I just could not get invested enough to care.
This is no way diminishes my love and respect for Rice as an author, though. She will stay on that top shelf that I've had her on for so many years.