Cover Image: The Last Rose

The Last Rose

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Member Reviews

Ever since I read Glass Slippers, I have been obsessed with this author. The third book on the Pied Piper was an interesting spin on a classic tale. This one takes on Beauty and the Beast and I just didn't like it as much. It stays loose to the original tale, subtracting a sister (Perrault's version) and adding it's own hairy twist (no spoilers). 

The beast has been terrorizing this village for centuries, stealing villagers away to make him part of their hunt. This bit weaves in more of the legend of the Wild Hunt (which would be German) and makes the beast the leader. I suppose if one were reading this without a lot of knowledge of fairy tales and mythology it might have been more interesting but I felt the jumble of different bits cobbled together to make this "Beauty and the Beast" tale anything but old as time and honestly most of the characters were obnoxious. 

I'll be intrigued which tale she picks next.

My thanks to Delacorte Press and Netgalley for this ARC.
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I loved this retelling of the classic Beauty and the Beast story.  It is a very fresh twist one that I have never seen before.  I love the fact that there is a bit more history into the beast and why he does what he does throughout the story.  Adding in the fact that there are people in the town who are born with the gene to shapeshift into wolves is also quite fun.  Overall, I think this is the perfect book to give a kid who enjoys fairytale retellings with a twist.  I am quite excited to recommend it.  I am also wanting to go back and read some of the past stories to see what fresh twists were put on classic tales.
	Thank you so much to Random House Children’s and Netgalley for allowing me to read an advance copy of this book.
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It was okay. The main character's pov got annoying at times. But the story was a very interesting retelling. I liked how the author turned the story on its head. It felt like the main character was an unreliable narrator, which makes sense because a child in this setting wouldn't know or understand the ins and outs of what was happening. For me though, that really took away from the story. I didn't feel like there was much of a plot arc or character growth. The story would have continued on just fine without the main character. It felt like the story was mostly just the world building of an alternative version of Beauty and the Beast. That said, I think my younger daughter would enjoy this book in spite of its flaws. The narrator would be entertaining to a younger child and the plot issues wouldn't bother them either.
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I received an electronic ARC from Random House Children's through NetGalley.
The fourth in this series of younger siblings and famous older sisters. Readers meet Mera as she struggles to figure out how to save her sister, Darina, from the Beast's castle. They learn that she can shape shift to become a wolf and that she is incredibly loyal to her sister. Cypess stays true to the overall storyline of Beauty and the Beast but adds some interesting twists to make readers think. In the end, Darina marries her Beast and they ride off together. Mera and her grandmother also enjoy a race through the woods.
I appreciate the way the author changes the story to make the characters less perfect. Each is multi-dimensional and all are flawed. As the series progresses, the storylines and characters become more realistic and relatable.
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When you hear that a book is going to be a fariytale retelling, you know the story. However, this book completely shocked me with the way it approached telling the tale. This book is less about the fairytale and more about the relationships of a family. Specifically, the sisterhood of Mera and Darina. This is the fourth book in the "Sisters Ever After" series, but it is the first I have read. It does a really great job of highlighting how sisters do not always get along, but they do always love each other. I appreciated seeing the fairytale from the younger sister's point of view since she is outside of the romance. As younger sister to my own sister it was enjoyable to read this novel.
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This is a great continuation of the series.  I have enjoyed each one on it's own and yet as part of a series.  I like the twist she has put with each one.  This version of Beauty and the Beast is wonderbar.
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When her older sister, Darina, is kidnapped and held prisoner in the Beast’s castle, Mera must find a way to rescue her. In this fourth installment of fairy tale reimaginings where younger sisters play surprising roles, the plot twists are unexpected and make the book tough to put down. Will Mera be willing to risk revealing a dangerous secret in order to free her sister? Find out in this suspenseful retelling of the classic tale of Beauty and the Beast.
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The Last Rose was an interesting take on the Beauty and the Beast story. I found it to be such a creative element that the story was told from a different perspective. That of the sister and not the one who falls for Beast. I very much enjoyed the origin story of how the curse and Beast came to be. It made alot more sense in terms of his loneliness and his behaviors.
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Cute story! The characters were likable and the plot flowed well. MG readers will find a lot to like here. Beautiful cover as well that's sure to lure readers to get a closer look when they see it on the shelves!
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Really fun read! Most of the characters were well developed and likeable. The story was different than I was expecting but flowed very nicely.
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Wow, the story kept me on the edge of my seat. I thought Mera was so brave. The story makes you cheer for her to set things right and to overcome whatever is in her way.
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This fourth book in the Sister's Ever After series did not disappoint! Each book can be read as a stand alone book, but I've enjoyed them all so much! This addition to the series focuses on the story of the Beauty and the Beast as told from the beauty's untold about sister's perspective. The unexpected twists and turns I've come to expect and enjoy from Leah Cypess were present. I will definitely be adding this book to my school's library!
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If you like fantasy, you'll like this book.
Delacorte Press and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on December 5th.

The woods are dangerous.  The Beast turns people into hounds.  But Mera and her older sister go wandering and take care.

Mera is a hound part of the time and her sister falls in love with the Beast.

The Beast is part hound and part human.  Toward the end of the book, the Beast dies.

Can they make him come back to life?
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The Last Rose
Sisters Ever After #4
Leah Cypess
This is the fourth book in the Sisters Ever After Series. I love fairytales and books that tweak them and rewrite them. I will never see Beauty and the Beast in the same light again. Author Leah Cypess has taken the characters and changed them. I still knew this was based on Beauty and the Beast and yet it wasn’t the fairytale we have become accustomed to.  In this version we meet Mera. Her sister Darina has been kidnapped by the beast. At night he and his hounds search the land for those he can take and turn them into hounds. 
The Beast has taken Darina and her 11-year-old sister Mera is coming to the rescue. Unfortunately, the characters needed more development.
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Thank you to NetGalley, Random House Children's, and Delacorte Press for the opportunity to read an advanced reader's copy of this book for an honest review. (Publish Date: 05 Dec 2023)

I’ve read two of the other three books in this Sisters Ever After series by Leah Cypess (I’m anxiously waiting for my local library to get “The Piper’s Promise” in!), so I was very excited when I saw Leah’s next book was coming out later this fall and jumped at the opportunity to read it.

Based off a classic fairy tale, “The Last Rose” follows 11-year-old Mera as she plans to save her beautiful older sister from a terrible beast who kidnaps people from their small village and turns them into hounds for his pack.

This book was my favorite in the series so far, because the retelling was so unexpected, yet it stayed just close enough to the classic version that I thoroughly enjoyed it. Also, the cover art alone is going to sell this book – it’s absolutely gorgeous! It’s the first cover in this series to not include both siblings, but I wasn’t upset in the least. 

I would highly recommend this book to older children, young adults, and anyone who loves a great fairy tale retelling. I will purchase this book as a gift to my 10-year-old daughter to read again and again!
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The Last Rose was an allegorical tale which told of the battle between good and evil within each person's heart.  Reading it will make you ponder the effects of your decisions and shed light on our own potential to either hurt or protect those around us. A powerful message of love, friendship, and sacrifice is reminiscent throughout.  Recommend.

Thank you to NetGalley for the chance to review this book ahead of its publication date.
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This was a new take on the Beauty and the Beast fairy tale told by beauty's little sister, Mera.  When Darina is held captive by the beast her little sister is bound and determined to rescue her because she is certain that the beast meant to take her, instead.

I thought that the author did a great job of being true to the story while also giving the whole tale a fresh look.  All the rumors of the beast turning his captives into wolves to grow his pack of hounds and the uncertainties that drove Mera to try to save her sister pulled you in.  

With that being said, I did not particularly like Mera.  I thought she was rather petulant and self centered and, even though she professed to want to save her sister, it seemed like it was often in her own best interests.  I feel like it was her spitefulness, overall, that made me not like the book as much as I should have.
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Oh my goodness! This book was fascinating, complicated, and sooo good! I’m a huge lover of fairytales, but I don’t think I’ve ever read a fairytale quite like this one. The characters are all turned on their heads, and the people we thought we knew turned out to be quite different.
Mera has never been the pretty one. She has stood in the shadow of her sister, Darina for years. But when Darina is kidnapped by the Beast, only Mera knows the truth. It should be her stuck in the dark castle. So Mera decides to rescue her sister only to find secrets she could have never imagined waiting for her.
Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite fairytales! And I love to read retellings of it, but this one was so interesting and different. Mera is a wonderful heroine full of fight and spunk. She is determined to not be controlled by anyone or anything. She’s had to be tougher than her sister, and she’s much more practical as well.
I’m honestly not sure how I felt about most of the other characters in this book. Everyone is full of greys even Darina, the Beauty in the story isn’t the traditional pure heart we hear about. I think it was fascinating to read a retelling where I had no idea what was going to happen next and honestly no idea what I wanted to happen next. Darina and the Beast aren’t the heroes they normally are.
I love the theme of sisterhood though. Mera is fiercely loyal and willing to do everything for her sister. I wish that the idea of love would have been defined a little differently. Love is not a feeling, but it is instead an action. But I do agree that feelings change. However, love should not.
This is a clean read with some creepier moments. For example, Mera gets locked up by the Beast. And there are moments where parents can talk about manipulation since the Beast is not portrayed as the hero in this story. There’s some Stockholm Syndrome vibes going on.
This was an incredibly rich story! There is so much in it, and I think middle grade readers will love it. 

Strong female heroines!
Wonderful world building!
Couldn’t put it down!
Twists and turns all the way!
Conventional family values!

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.
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This is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, told from the perspective of Belle’s younger sister. So much of this was vague and unexplained. Only at the end, did we start getting the whole picture and by then I didn’t really care.

I think kids might like this story way more than I did, but I’m usually someone that enjoys children’s literature. This was very imaginative, and I enjoyed some of it, but it was lacking somehow. Characters development was nonexistent and I hated the beast. Even the sister was unlikable. I’m not sure I liked this. Mera was petulant  and stubborn, while her sister, Darina, was obtuse and stubborn. The dad was deplorable and absent. Only the grandmother cared about this horrible family. So, I’m not sure this is something I would ever recommend because it just didn’t have any depth. I feel bad because Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairytale.

Thank you to Delacorte Press and NetGalley for the advanced copy. This is my honest review.
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The books in this series keep getting better and better. I highly recommend these books for kids who love the classic fairytales but are wanting to branch out. They're not so familiar that they feel stale, but they still follow the general stories we all know and love.
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