Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Red Riding Hood - Book Review

Red Riding Hood – Book Review
Sarah Blakely-Cartwright
YA Fairytale
Valerie's sister was beautiful, kind and sweet. Now she is dead. Henry, the handsome son of the blacksmith, tries to console Valerie, but her wild heart beats faster for another: the outcast woodcutter, Peter, who offers Valerie another life far from home.
After her sister's violent death, Vaerie's world begins to spiral out of control. For generations, the wold has been kept at bay with a monthly sacrifice. But now no one is safe. When an expert wolf hunter arrives, the villagers learn that the creature lives among them - it could be anyone in town.
It soon becomes clear that Valerie is the ony one who can hear the voice of the creature. The wolf says she must surrender herself before the blood moon wanes... or everyone she loves will die.
After watching the movie I was really interested to read 'Red Riding hood' especially when I learned the unusual fact that the book was written as an adaption of the film, rather than the other way around.
Therefore, despite not being overly impressed with the film, the book captivated me right away and I really enjoyed the back-story the book provided on Valerie's and her sister Lucie's life. It had a slower build up which made the death of Valerie's sister that much more dramatic as she was a character that you had actually seen and cared about, rather than the movie's version of events in which her part was pretty much that of a dead girl.
Also the romance in the book blossomed much slower than is seen in the movie, adding a realism to it that made the book really enjoyable. Continually the relationships between all the characters felt deeper and there was more connection between the villagers, giving them a sense of unity that I felt the film had lacked.
However the story still left me disappointed. I felt that many of the plotlines were predictable (and not just because I had seen the film) however, the one answer that constantly eluded me was, who was the wolf? There were so many possibilities that I was just itching to know and in this respect I have to admire the author, Sarah Cartwright as even though I already knew from the movie who the wolf was, I found no clue of it in the story. Cartwright successfully kept the wolf's identity a secret up until the very last chapter. Which was fantastic except for one thing, the chapter wasn't there!
While I know this was done as a promotion to make people go and see the film, I still found it incredibly irritating that I had to wait and then log on to a website to read the ending. I felt a little cheated, like the book I had brought was incomplete (which I suppose it was). Therefore if anyone is thinking of buying it, you might want to check if your book has the ending.
Yet despite these things I did enjoy the written version of 'Red Riding Hood' much more than the film, so I would still recommend people read it. Although while I personally think it would appeal more to a younger teen audience, I have seen many mixed reviews on this book so be prepared, you'll either like it or you won't.

1 comment:

  1. Great review! I unfortunately did not like this book. I thought it was badly written, with silly characters and a weak story. But it could be because it was written based on a movie - I've found that with a lot of those movie-to-book books.