Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Guest Author: Erin Satie + BaTB Retellings!

Bed of Flowers came out yesterday. Today, I've got Erin Satie on the blog with a fun guest post about the book and its connection to Beauty and the Beast. There's also a giveaway at the end. ;) Enjoy!

Beauty and the Beast: the other versions by Erin Satie

My book Bed of Flowers [out now!] is based on Beauty and the Beast—which has been my favorite fairy tale for ages, although I find that writing a book on a subject often makes one intimately familiar with all the flaws and problems that hadn’t been apparent before.

I love the Disney version—bookish Belle meant the world to me when I was younger and boy do the songs hold up—but for me, Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber sets the standard for what a fairy tale retelling ought to be. It contains two versions of Beauty and the Beast, two entirely different ways of looking at the same sequence of events, with diametrically opposite meanings.

The first, The Courtship of Mr. Lyon, is set sometime in the early twentieth century, in England, not far from London. It still has a distinct fairy tale feel, despite the fact that Beauty’s father drives a car instead of a cart. The Beast—Mr. Lyon—is a perfect gentleman; instead of demanding that Beauty’s father hand his daughter over as a captive, he simply invites her for dinner.

In this telling, Beauty accepts Beast’s lavish generosity while refusing his advances, leaving him at the earliest opportunity, and breaking a promise to return. All of these choices appear in the original fairy tale, but Carter casts them in a new light. Beauty is shallow and fickle. Her revulsion is hard to understand. And her selfish behavior behavior takes a toll; it starts to spoil her good looks. 

In The Tiger’s Bride, Beauty is traded to Beast in a game of cards. Disillusioned by the experience, she discovers that she prefers Beast’s isolated castle, full of automatons and talking animals, to the world of men. There’s an essential wildness to this Beauty and the conclusion of the tale is disturbingly carnal. Instead of transforming into a man at the end, Beast changes Beauty into a tiger—by licking her, scouring away her skin and revealing a beautiful pelt of fur.

(The Tiger’s Bride was published in 1979 and I have always wondered if the makers of Shrek were familiar with it.)

So one story is a morality tale, the other an embrace of savagery. One is genteel, the other rebellious. The same fairy tale could be retold a hundred times and end a hundred different ways. It could have a different meaning each time, follow a different character, turn a familiar detail into an exciting new detour… in Bed of Flowers, Beast’s rose garden becomes a househouse full of exotic orchids, for example. If you read fanfic you know how many tales can spin out from a single source. But I discovered fanfic late, so I learned the lesson from Angela Carter.

If you’re even vaguely curious about these The Bloody Chamber, I have some exciting news for you. I wanted to browse through the stories before I wrote this post but my copy is packed away and my library didn’t have a downloadable version. I decided to check the current price & discovered that Richard Armitage narrates the Audible-exclusive audiobook. I nabbed myself a copy without a second thought and let me tell you, he doesn’t just read Beast’s lines—he growls them. It is delicious.

~ Erin Satie

Bed of Flowers by Erin Satie
Publisher: Little Phrase (June 19, 2018)
Series: Sweetness and Light, 1
Genre: Historical Romance

Bonny Reed is beautiful, inside and out.

A loyal friend and loving daughter, she's newly engaged to her small town's most eligible bachelor. She's happy for herself--but mostly for her family, who need the security her marriage will bring.

An old enemy shatters her illusions.

First Baron Loel cost Bonny's family her fortune. Now he's insisting that her fiancé has hidden flaws, secrets so dark that--if she believed him--she'd have to call off the wedding.

How will she choose?

When the truth comes out, Bonny will have to choose between doing what's right and what's easy. Between her family and her best friend. And hardest of all--between her honor and the love of a man who everyone wants her to hate. 

Where to Buy*:
More Info:

Erin Satie is the author of the dark and elegant No Better Angels series of historical romances set in the early Victorian period. She’s currently hard at work on her new series, Sweetness and Light. 

Erin is a California native who’s lived on the coasts and in the heartland, in tiny city apartments and on a working farm. She studied art history in both college and graduate school—research is always her favorite part of starting a new book.

Her favorite part of finishing a book, whether reading or writing, is the happily ever after. 

Where to Find Erin:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Looking for a new BaTB romance to dive into? Don't forget to pick up BED OF FLOWERS now!


Until Next Time,

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