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Reviewed by Melinda Hills for Readers' Favorite
Vynasha has been caring for her ill nephew since the raging fire that took the lives of his mother and Vynasha’s other two sisters in Craving Beauty: Wylder Tales Book 1 by Jennifer Silverwood. Times are getting tougher since they live so close to the Wylder Mountains which ruined their family’s life in her grandfather’s generation. Wild creatures and strange happenings are a threat to anyone who dares to enter the forest, and the danger is coming closer. After meeting an old beggar, though, Vynasha is convinced that there is Majik, or a Source, hidden somewhere up in the mountains that would save Wyll’s life and she will do anything to make that happen. After leaving Wyll with some friendly mountain folk, Vynasha continues on until she arrives at what seems to be an abandoned castle. Little does she realize what fate has in store for her inside! Not only is there a beastly Prince who wants to claim her as his bride, but there are fearsome creatures that roam the lower levels of the castle and strange beings that are more like ghosts than people. Not knowing whom she can trust, if anyone, Vynasha escapes from the castle, but a cliffhanger of an ending prevents me from saying more.
Jennifer Silverwood has woven a skillfully written, complex tale based loosely on Beauty and the Beast with plenty of interesting characters and a lot of action. Many secrets remain hidden throughout the story, probably to be revealed in the next volume, so Craving Beauty may leave you with few answers to the questions that burden Vynasha. Craving Beauty: Wylder Tales Book 1 is certainly worth the read, though, for the beautiful and vivid descriptions and the emotional ups and downs of the main character, who fights through for the love of her nephew. You will just have to be prepared to read a companion book, Wolfsbane’s Daughter, and Book 2: Scarred Beauty, but altogether I am sure this epic fantasy series will be exceptional. Beautifully written with evocative language and descriptions.