Kyle Kingsbury used to have it all – money, good looks, and popularity at his elite Manhattan private school. Now, all that is gone thanks to a spell cast on him by a witch he encountered at school. Kyle has always been spoiled and vain. In the past, he relied on his attractiveness to get what he wants in life, so he finds it extremely difficult to adapt to his new beast-like appearance. He leaves school and goes into hiding. For a long time, the only human contact he has is with his housekeeper and his tutor. His own father doesn’t even want anything to do with him. In order to break the spell and return to his human form, Kyle must find his true love within the next two years.
This modern retelling of “Beauty and the Beast” is told from the beast’s point of view. Kyle not only transforms in appearance, but also in his character. It is interesting to watch this transformation as he slowly becomes a more caring, thoughtful person. The romance was a little lacking in chemistry in my opinion, and I thought that aspect of the plot could have been more developed. I wasn’t a big fan of the chat room segments in each chapter, either, although they did provide a few humorous moments. While the ending is not a surprise to those familiar with “Beauty in the Beast,” Beastly is an enjoyable, quick read that adds to the original tale by providing the beast’s perspective.