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Publisher's Summary

"It is the heart of this place, and it is dying," says the Beast. And it is true; the center of the Beast's palace, the glittering glasshouse that brings Beauty both comfort and delight in her strange new environment, is filled with leafless brown rosebushes. But deep within this enchanted world, new life, at once subtle and strong, is about to awaken. Twenty years ago Robin McKinley enthralled listeners with the power of Beauty. Now this extraordinarily gifted novelist retells the story of Beauty and the Beast again - but in a totally new way, with fresh perspective, ingenuity, and mature insight. In Rose Daughter she has written her finest and most deeply felt work, a compelling, richly imagined, and haunting exploration of the transformative power of love.

©1997 Robin McKinley (P)2013 Recorded Books
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: Romance

What listeners say about Rose Daughter

Average Customer Ratings
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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    309
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Same story, different characters, new ending

This book would get a solid 4.5 from me in the overall category if half stars were an option. Performance was excellent.

**NOTE** This is NOT a continuation of the original Beauty with her Beast, it's another retelling of the same story, from scratch. Think: a parallel universe where things are similar, yet also vastly different. Despite having the same name, Beauty is definitely a new main character.

What I liked:
-The alternate ending. Very cool. No spoilers here, I'm just glad I listened til the end.
-The sisters are also completely different characters, and I enjoyed their sassy personalities. Again, no spoilers, just know that these girls aren't Hope and Grace rinsed and recycled.
-Really funny little blooper they didn't catch toward the mid-end/end of the book -- "How are we doing on time?" Those always crack me up.

What I didn't like:
-While the original Beauty and "Rose Daughter" Beauty are cut from a similar cloth, I preferred the original Beauty from "Beauty" over this version. If I didn't know how much I loved the original, however, I believe I'd appreciate this Beauty a lot more.
-Another commenter pointed this out, and I agree: in audiobooks, the amount I skim past overly detailed descriptions of location when I'm enthralled with a book becomes very obvious. Robin McKinley is almost as descriptive as Diana Gabaldon, and unlike the Outlander books, which give enough meat due to their length to make up for all the dressing, this book felt slightly too short on character development for all the flowery descriptions.

Overall opinion:
Worth a listen! I'm happy with my purchase, and looking into more Robin McKinley books.

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Long and Luxurious

Would you listen to Rose Daughter again? Why?

I'm honestly not sure. I've read the print book several times and loved it, and the narration of this audiobook was excellent. However, it became obvious about halfway through that I've been skimming the longest sections of narration to get back to what's happening in the story. McKinley is the queen of long and luxurious description, but I found it dragged occasionally while listening. I still love it, but I might stick to the text version from now on.

What did you like best about this story?

The world of this story is so rich that you can't help but feel transported there.

What does Bianca Amato bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Amato did an excellent job bringing out some of the subtler inflections of character voice. I could feel the emotion, and a time or two it brought tears to my eyes (and I'm not usually a crier).

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good, but not as good as Beauty

Robin McKinley is one of my favorite authors in the whole world. Her first book is entitled, "Beauty" and is the story of Beauty and the Beast. Oddly, many years and books after "Beauty" Robin chose to tell the story of Beauty and the Beast again. And that is this book.

Both books have some things in common. They are both telling the same fairy tale, after all. But this story is fairly different in many ways. When this book first came out on paper, I got it immediately, but I was Very fond of "Beauty" and I think I was jealous on its behalf. I did not reread "Rose Daughter" again until this audio version came out. I can see now that "Rose Daughter" has much to offer. I think "Beauty" was the romantic ideal of an unmarried woman in her 20s, and "Rose Daughter" is the romantic ideal of a married woman in her 40s.

However.

I still like "Beauty" better.

My advice if you have never read any of Robin's books: Start with "Beauty" or "The Blue Sword" or "The Hero and the Crown". Then if you fall in love with Robin's work, branch out into her other books, including this one.

23 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Round Two

My review may be a teensy bit biased because I love Robin McKinley and have always enjoyed her style of storytelling. What I love most about this particular story, though, is its perfect counterpoint to her other Beauty and the Beast book 'Beauty'. While 'Beauty' is charming in its ability to speak very plainly and make every magical situation seem very real and almost plebeian, this version takes the opposite tack and embraces the fairy tale side of things. Magic is common here, not uncommon, and only startles the characters when extravagant or bizarre. I love both books for embracing and adhering to a very specific style, but I listen to this one at least once every 6 months because the author really goes the extra mile in her fairy tale and keeps dipping her prose into poetry.

Now, if you're not a fan of flowery, pretty, extravagant fantasy, don't read or listen to this book. You'll think it's silly and stupid and you won't be able to enjoy it properly.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Not the usual spin on the tale...

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, because all of my friends like fairy tales.

What did you like best about this story?

I like that the two sisters aren't irredeemable nitwits in this version- they too have character and are a great support to their youngest sister.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

I liked her first version better

This book is much more mystical than the first. The theme centers and roses and then brings up roses in almost every sentence. If the main character isn't remembering the scent of them, she's discovering their name, finding them in her garden, cultivating them, collecting them, saving them, glorying in them, pruning them, tying them up, making wreaths, learning stories about them, making friends of them....I think you get the picture. So did I. Very quickly. No need for so *much* repetition. The main character and her sisters were well fleshed out, but no one else was. The beast barely got a look in. And I'm not at all sure what happened at the end. Just lots and lots of roses and symbolism. A good read for some who enjoy nuance but for those who are looking for a good story....maybe not.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A refreshing take on a classic tale

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this book to any fan of the story Beauty and the Beast. The words in the book are so descriptive, even though it's in a make believe place, you can actually imagine your are there down to very detailed elements.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Beauty is my favorite character. The way she thinks and analyzes in the book is outstanding. She shows a wide variety of emotions and curiosity.

Which scene was your favorite?

Any of the scenes when Beauty is interacting with the beast, but if I have to pick one, it would be when they are on the roof of the castle.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

If I had the time I would have listened to it all in one sitting. I listened whenever I had the time. I'd read the book as a child and was amazed to see an audio version finally. I'd been meaning to read it again but with my schedule lately I haven't had much time for reading books. This book being available is one of the reasons why I joined audible.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Favorite Beauty and the Beast retelling ever!

I’ve always harbored a lingering regret that the Beast gets transformed into a boring prince at the end of the story…but not this time! I loved this version so much, and also loved the relationship btw Beauty and her sisters and father. Also now I want to try growing roses. The narrator did a fabulous job!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Not a gratifying ending

Don’t listen to this book if you like fairytale endings. Not the same ending as the fairytale.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • KS
  • 01-12-20

So disappointing

The performance was all right, though I didn't like it. The narrator was slow and the way she she put emotion into the dialogue - halting and almost stuttering - was fine for a short time but she was always using the same technique throughout the entire book. It got old really fast, so that it was more annoying than affecting. The book itself was a huge disappointment. I still can't believe it came from Robin McKinley; the style was so immature and poorly done. I read this book twice before because I had forgotten that I didn't care for it. The word "and" was overused so much that I came to hate the word. Eventually I wanted to stop the book, but I had gotten so far in it that I didn't want to not finish (I like finishing things), so I increased the speed a bit. It helped with the narrator's reading speed quite nicely, though sometimes the pauses still seemed a bit slow.

All Beauty ever did was cry cry cry. Everyone crying or speaking nonsense. And then more nonsensical descriptions and thoughts that meandered for what seemed like an eternity and were repeated again and again. So boring.

I don't know why McKinley wrote another Beauty and the Beast retelling. She nailed it the first time around with her Beauty novel. That's a much better novel than this - my favorite retelling of the fairytale in fact. I wouldn't bother with this one.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Corina Joy
  • 07-14-22

An interesting take on a classic

I have to say this book was good, however the author first re telling called Beauty is definitely a better story. I found this booked dragged in places and went so fast in others! Overall tho it’s still an enjoyable take

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sue
  • 07-11-20

A lovely fantasy tale for a post Game of Thrones readership

This book is - spoiler alert - a retelling of
Beauty and the Beast, so the plot is entirely predictable, but it is beautifully told for an adult audience. The style is lyrical and well written. The narrator takes a bit of getting used to, but is actually well matched to the tale, so worth persevering with. I loved it!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kelly
  • 03-02-17

Rose Daughter a Beauty and the Beast retelling

What I love about Robin McKinley is her respect for the Beauty and the Beast fairytale. Not only is Beauty one of my favourite reads/listens of all time, it's comforting and a beautiful variation.

And then there is Rose Daughter, a different variation again. Not my utmost favourite, but still a great listen.

Bianca Amato does a great job reading this.