Author: A.N. Roquelaure (a.k.a Anne Rice)
First Published: 1983
Page Count: 253
Film/ TV Adaptation: No
Rating: 2/5 Stars
Note: Book 1 of The Sleeping Beauty Quartet series
Do you dare allow your innocent eyes to pass over Rice’s extremely saucy take on a classic fairytale?
*Degrading *Too Raunchy *Little Relation to Sleeping Beauty
“The prince had all his young life known the story of Sleeping Beauty, cursed to sleep for a hundred years, with her parents, the King and Queen, and all of the court, after pricking her finger on a spindle.” The Prince has awakened Sleeping Beauty from her hundred year slumber and claimed her as his. In this version of the classic tale, having claimed the princess, the Prince takes her to his kingdom where she will serve as his slave for an unspecified time. Her life is henceforth dedicated to pleasing him, but Beauty finds that this life of servitude is difficult to yield to, especially when she develops feelings for a male slave.
I feel like my brain and eyeballs have been violated nearly as many times as Beauty was in this book, but that can’t possibly be, considering that every line, paragraph, and word depicts some kind of adult act of pleasure. I’m starting with the bad here since there wasn’t much I did enjoy about this tale. I had no idea books could be this graphic. I don’t read erotica a lot, but I can’t imagine they are all like this! However, what took it over the top for me was that the majority of the adult acts of pleasure were performed on people that had not consented. And for the number of times it happens, you never grow numb to it; it is shocking every time. The degradation was constant and as I mentioned before, any type of adult intercourse is also constant. I’m surprised anyone could spin a story out with all of that happening nonstop. What also bothered me was that once Beauty is awakened, the plot has nothing to do with the original Sleeping Beauty story. It seems like a ploy to draw in innocent fairytale lovers like myself into thinking this is some saucy bodice ripper version of the tale. It is in fact a much much dirtier story that has little to do with Sleeping Beauty, so fairytale geeks beware!
The positive thing I can say, which I couldn’t say for Fifty Shades of Grey, is that I was at least drawn into the story juuuuuust a smidgen. Rice creates this lavish world of debauchery and indulgence, and the reader can’t help but pursue this story until the end in hopes of discovering why the world is like this and what the purpose is for enslaving prince and princesses for pleasure. And no matter how much I disliked this ridiculous book, Rice still left me wanting to read the second book because the world she created is so different from anything I’ve read. I don’t know if it’s a good different, but definitely different.
To read this book, you really can’t be a prude, and even if you think you aren’t, you still are probably not prepared for it. I know I wasn’t. I probably still couldn’t have resisted this book, whether out of curiosity for how naughty it really was or because it was based on a fairytale. Try it if you dare!