Friday, December 14, 2012

Review & Audio Giveaway: Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama

Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama
Published: September 4, 2012
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Fierce, seductive mermaid Syrenka falls in love with Ezra, a young naturalist. When she abandons her life underwater for a chance at happiness on land, she is unaware that this decision comes with horrific and deadly consequences.

Almost one hundred forty years later, seventeen-year-old Hester meets a mysterious stranger named Ezra and feels overwhelmingly, inexplicably drawn to him. For generations, love has resulted in death for the women in her family. Is it an undiagnosed genetic defect . . . or a curse? With Ezra’s help, Hester investigates her family’s strange, sad history. The answers she seeks are waiting in the graveyard, the crypt, and at the bottom of the ocean—but powerful forces will do anything to keep her from uncovering her connection to Syrenka and to the tragedy of so long ago.

My Thoughts
Wow! Color me awed! Monstrous Beauty is a fantastic yet horror filled novel that’s filled with gorgeous prose. I was literally hypnotized for the entire story. I can’t wait to see what else Elizabeth Fama has up her sleeve because she truly delivered quality entertainment with Monstrous Beauty!

This story juxtaposes two different points in time including 1873 and the present. Fama transports her readers to Plymouth Plantation where a centuries old curse takes the life of a particular lineage of women immediately upon giving birth. Medical examination nor logic are capable of explaining what would cause the women in Hester’s family to fade away when they bring life to this earth. As a result, Hester has sworn off love as a drastic measure to keep herself safe. On a fateful night, though, she encounters a mysterious man and is immediately attracted to him. As events unfold, Hester soon discovers that she might be able to undo the curse imposed upon her lineage.

This book has it all, including sea creatures, magic, ghosts, curses, sea witches, secrets and spells. Each element that Elizabeth Fama carefully weaves into the story, along with her meticulous details, add to the magical feel of this book. As I breezed through the chapters, I was both captivated and astounded at the lengths Fama would go to bring this story to life. There were violent events that shocked me; tender moments that moved me; and mysterious occurrences that kept me enthralled. It literally felt like you could lift the story and its characters right from the book.

With perfect casting and proper pacing, Elizabeth Fama delivers a great story that I highly recommend be enjoyed by the audio version of this book.

5 Snowflakes

WinterHaven Books is offering one lucky follower a copy of the audio for Monstrous Beauty. To get a glimpse of how amazing the audio is, check out the excerpt.

Be sure to fill out the rafflecopter and share a thoughtful comment about the book, review or anything you'd like to share. :) Good luck! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Such a wonderful cover, and the premise sounds awesome as well. Glad to know it lives up to expectations :)

  2. This book sounds like so much fun! I love a good horror story!

  3. Oh I keep hearing awesome things about this book. I was a little unsure as I thought mermaid type books had been overdone at the time, but like you mentioned I've heard this is so different to what's out there. Wonderful review Arlene! :)

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  5. The audio is haunting and I would really love to have one hahahah

  6. The audio was wonderful, but way too short. What a tease!

  7. This book sounds like something I'd enjoy, and I really liked the audio sample. I've been loving audiobooks lately so I'd love to get this one!

  8. This sounds amazing and your 5 stars has me salivating for this, Arlene. I've been loving audio books so I'll have to try this even if I don't win. Great review and awesome giveaway. Thanks!

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  9. Hi! Thanks for sharing this review and for this chance to read/listen this title! This one is on my TBR pile since it's release! I would love to hear it :P

  10. i loved this monstrous beauty and this audio .wow

  11. This sounds like an audiobook I'd actually enjoy reading/listening to, and the cover is so pretty!