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Friday, November 21, 2014

Blog Tour and Giveaway: While Beauty Slept by Elizabeth Blackwell

Title: While Beauty Slept
Author: Elizabeth Blackwell
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Putnam
Publish Date: February 20, 2014
Source: I received a copy from the publisher; however, this did not affect my review.

What's the Story?:

From "I am not the sort of person about whom stories are told. Those of humble birth suffer their heartbreaks and celebrate their triumphs unnoticed by the bards, leaving no trace in the fables of their time....
And so begins Elise Dalriss's story

When she hears her great-granddaughter recount a tale about a beautiful princess awakened by a handsome prince, it pushes open a door to the past, a door Elise has long kept locked. For Elise was the companion to the real princess who slumbered - and she is the only one left who knows the truth of what happened so many years ago.

As the memories start to unfold, Elise is plunged back in to the magnificent world behind the opulent palace walls. Fleeing a hardscrabble existence and personal tragedy, she builds a new life for herself as a servant to the royal family and quickly rises within the castle hierarchy. As Elise proves herself a loyal confidante, she is drawn into the lives of an extraordinary cast of women: a beautiful queen who wakes each morning with tears on her pillow, an elderly spinster who in heartache shuts herself away, a princess who yearns to be free, and the ambitious and frightening sister who cannot accept the fact that she will never rule. Elise has guarded their secrets - and her own - for a lifetime. While Beauty Sleeps is her story."

My Two Cents:

"While Beauty Slept" is a wholly original fairytale retelling of Sleeping Beauty. Oh guys, I love a good fairytale retelling. I love seeing an old favorite story turned on its head into something new and fantastic. This book is definitely one of those. The story is told from the perspective of Elise, a servant in the household of the Queen and the King, who are fighting for their reign. Not all is happy in this world. The Queen seems to be potentially barren and it is imperative that she provide an heir for the kingdom or she and the King could lose their grip on the kingdom. The Queen starts conspiring with and consulting with Millicent (who you will of course remember as the witchy woman from the Sleeping Beauty fairytale). Action ensues.

This book has a historical feel but obviously there is a fantasy-type bend to the story with it being a fairytale. I loved the world that the author created. This is a world where who you know and who you are affiliated with can change your life. All of the matches between the different characters really pulled me in. When the Queen finally has a daughter, Millicent will do anything to get her hands (and her influence) on Rose, the now heir to the kingdom. We see how Millicent tries to work her own influence to get what she wants when it comes to Rose.

I loved that the story was told from the point of view of Elise. Although she is a servant, she is intimately involved in caring and protecting Rose, a job which she takes very seriously. Elise is a study in how a person who on the surface may seem of little consequence can save the day. Overall, I really enjoyed this story!


Want to win a copy of While Beauty Slept? Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below (U.S. only)!

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Follow the Rest of the Tour: 

November 3
The Novel Life—review
November 4
Living Read Girl—review
Debbie’s Book Bag—review + giveaway
November 7
A Dream Within a Dream—review + giveaway
Books in the Burbs—spotlight + giveaway
Melissa’s Eclecitc Bookshelf—spotlight + giveaway
November 10
Midlife at the Oasis—review + giveaway
November 11
Red Carpet Crash—spotlight + giveaway
November 12
Bookish Things & More—review + giveaway
Teddy Rose Book Reviews—spotlight + giveaway
November 13
Grown Up Book Reviews—review + giveaway
November 14
My Friend Amy—spotlight + giveaway
November 14
To Read or Not to Read—review + giveway
Taking Time for Mommy—review + giveaway
November 17
CrazedMind—review + giveaway
November 18
Fresh Fiction—spotlight
November 19
Jean BookNerd—spotlight + giveaway
November 20
Cheryl’s Book Nook—review + giveaway
November 21
A Bookish Affair—review + giveaway
The Mod Podge Bookshelf—spotlight + giveaway
November 24
5 Minutes for Books—review + giveaway
November 27
Silver’s Reviews—review + giveaway
November 28
My 5 Monkeys—review


  1. I'm only vaguely familiar with the fairy tale. Will be fun to read this re-telling. Also this sounds like a good book to share with my granddaughters. Thanks for the giveaway.

  2. This book sounds fascinating and captivating. Thanks for this great giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  3. I have been wanting this book. It sounds so good.

  4. It looks like a story I would enjoy.
    mce1011 AT aol DOT com

  5. This book has been high up on my to-read list for a while now, so I was delighted to chance upon some giveaway opportunities in the last week. I was thrilled to find it on the top of this page when I made one of my regular visits. Your blog is always packed with coverage of books that very much suit my taste. Cheers, Kara S

  6. I enjoy fairy tale retellings, and this one sounds like one I could really get into. Thanks for having the giveaway.

  7. I just read that one too! One of the better fairytale retellings I think.

  8. Ooo....a Sleeping Beauty retelling! Must read!

  9. I love fairy tale retellings. I have definitely added this one to my TBR list.


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