Kyle Kingsbury is picture perfect - wealthy, popular, and most importantly gorgeous. Kyle scorns and mocks those he thinks are not attractive. When he plays a joke on an "ugly" girl at his school by pretending he will be her date to a dance, he discovers that appearances aren't all they seem. The girl is really a witch and she sees how ugly Kyle's heart is. The witch puts a spell on him that transforms him into a terrifying beast, claws and all. Kyle is afforded a second chance because of one small act of kindness he showed the night of the dance - giving a rose, rejected by his real date, to a girl taking tickets. He has two years to find someone to love him despite his appearance, and receive true love's kiss to break the spell.
This was a delightful read! While the bones of the story follow the Disney version of this classic fairy tale somewhat, the modern setting, language, and characters blend remarkably well. This book was on the 2009-2010 YARP list so chances are that many SD libraries will already have purchased it (I know...took me long enough, to read it, huh?). I now own my own copy and was very excited to learn that it's being made into a movie. As with many movie adaptations of books, liberties were taken with how things are portrayed on screen. And while I'm very partial to The Girl in the book rather than the actress picked to play her in the movie, I will be in line to see this movie the weekend that it opens!