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Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley

Rose Daughter (1997)

by Robin McKinley

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,357522,666 (3.91)157
  1. 90
    Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast by Robin McKinley (infiniteletters, HollyMS)
    infiniteletters: An earlier version of the same tale by the same author. Both excellent.
    HollyMS: Beauty was Robin McKinley's first retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Beauty is superior to Rose Daughter, however.
  2. 40
    East by Edith Pattou (infiniteletters)
  3. 30
    The Fire Rose by Mercedes Lackey (infiniteletters)
    infiniteletters: A spin on the classic tale, with elemental magic and 19th-century San Francisco.
  4. 20
    Toads and Diamonds by Heather Tomlinson (Aerrin99)
    Aerrin99: An excellent fairy tale retelling set in an India-like world.
  5. 10
    Uprooted by Naomi Novik (evymac)
    evymac: Fairy tale-like read with great characters and an enchanting plot.

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» See also 157 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
This is McKinley's second retelling of Beauty and the Beast--the first was Beauty. In this audio book. There are some neat updates--one of Beauty's sisters, Lionhearted dresses as a man to apprentice in town, and becomes known as a son in the family. Beauty is a gardener, ad when her father steals a rose a pact is made that either Beauty's father will be killed or Beauty will be The Beast's companion. The descriptions of the house--all of the places McKinley puts flowers is amazing. The magic is more subtle than other versions, but delightful. ( )
  StacyWright | Jul 15, 2017 |
Following T. Kingfisher’s instructions in the author’s note of Bryony and Roses, I sought out Robin McKinley’s Rose Daughter, which had inspired Kingfisher to write her novella. It was odd reading it so soon afterwards and I should, in retrospect, have left it much longer before going back to the same theme. While Kingfisher’s story didn’t spoil any of McKinley’s plot for me, it actually overshadowed it, being a more sophisticated and subversive take on Beauty and the Beast. McKinley certainly makes the story her own, but I didn’t find her heroine anywhere near as appealing as Kingfisher’s Bryony.

Where McKinley differs from most is that she doesn’t begin her story with the lost path in the woods and the discovery of the enchanted castle. On the contrary, her story follows Beauty, her father and her two sisters right from the beginning, as their vivacious mother dies, their father’s investments fail and they find themselves teetering on the brink of poverty. The names make it quite clear that this is a fantasy story: not only is Beauty called just that, but her sisters are respectively Lionheart (the brave, impulsive one) and Jeweltongue (the clever talker). Having said that, the three girls increasingly have to worry about penny-pinching and cutting their cloth to its new measure, which they manage admirably. When their father’s misfortunes drive him into a nervous collapse, they take advantage of an old deed that Beauty has found among his papers, which gives them ownership of a little house in the country called Rose Cottage...

For the full review, please see my blog:
https://theidlewoman.net/2017/06/13/rose-daughter-robin-mckinley/ ( )
  TheIdleWoman | Jun 19, 2017 |
A satisfying retelling of Beauty and the Beast. ( )
  bookczuk | Nov 2, 2016 |
Charming as of all of Mckinley's work. A gentle re-telling of Beauty and the Beast, which is a theme she's written upon a couple of times. This was very much inspired by her move to live in a quaint english village. This is much more true to the original story than some fairy tale re-tellings, but none the worse for that.

There are three sisters, who's successful father meets with sudden ruin and they're forced to flee to a desolate village and make a new life for themselves. This they do, but the father finally recovers sufficiently to travel, but becomes ensnared in the magical lair of a Beast, and can only escape with the promise of his daughter's hand. Beauty being the youngest and plainest of his daughters faces her fate bravely. She's always had a green-fingered touch with plants, and so she manages to coax the dying Beast's plants back to life, before discovering he isn't quite so fearsome as he might first appear.

There's lots of gentle humour and joy in the success of others. The love between the family sisters is especially well done, the forgiveness and acceptance of the faults in others. The Beast himself is never more than a large figure clothed in rich black robes. But his house remains eminently mysterious and causes Beauty much consternation. This is as close to angst and anything that happens in the novel. Yet it remains engaging and if not fast moving than at least interesting and enjoyable. It has Roses and Unicorns and baby animals. It's always going to be wonderful.

What more need you ask. ( )
  reading_fox | Aug 21, 2016 |
I really love this book. If I could change one thing, though, it would be to edit out some of the wordiness, just a tad. For the most part, the descriptiveness is effective in drawing you into the world and making the reading experience more magical, but there were times when it slowed down the narrative too much.

This is a book I not only love, but that I think I'll reread semi-regularly. I love the way McKinley portrays the relationships between the sisters; sisterly love is the best, and I can never get too much of it. (My, I'm using the word "love" a lot in this review...) It's also a comforting and stress-relieving book. When life gets overwhelming, I want to do just what Beauty did—get away from people, live in a cottage and/or castle for a while, and focus all my energy on one simple thing, like taking care of roses. But if I can't do that, at least I can read about other people doing it. ( )
  AngelClaw | Jul 8, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
Ironically, this reworking has disabled the fairy tale, robbing it of tension and meaning, and creating for her readers a less usable enchantment.
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To Neil and Tom,
whose absurd idea it was

and in memory of
a little lilac-covered cottage
where I used to live
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Her earliest memory was of waking from the dream.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0441005837, Mass Market Paperback)

Twenty years ago, Robin McKinley dazzled readers with the power of her novel Beauty. Now this extraordinarily gifted novelist returns to the story of Beauty and the Beast with a fresh perspective, ingenuity, and mature insight.

With Rose Daughter, she presents her finest and most deeply felt work--a compelling, richly imagined, and haunting exploration of the transformative power of love.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:08 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Beauty grows to love the Beast at whose castle she is compelled to stay, and through her love he is released from the curse that had turned him from man to beast. A beautiful retelling of the fairy tale Beauty & the Beast from Newbery Award-winning author Robin McKinley. Twenty years ago, Robin McKinley dazzled readers with the power of her novel Beauty. Now this extraordinarily gifted novelist returns to the story of Beauty and the Beast with a fresh perspective, ingenuity, and mature insight. With Rose Daughter, she presents her finest and most deeply felt work--a compelling, richly imagined, and haunting exploration of the transformative power of love.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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