Book Review

Spellbound Lies – Blog Tour

I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the SPELLBOUND LIES by Catherine Downen Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!


About The Book:


Author: Catherine Downen

Pub. Date: October 11, 2022

Publisher: Catherine Downen

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, Audiobook (coming soon)

Pages: 636

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, B&N, TBD,, Order a signed copy directly from Catherine

The prince has been in a constant battle with the beast lurking beneath his skin. Not a creature to be slayed, but a man crafted from the darkest evils. The two shift between the body they share, threatening to unleash a destruction that would change their realm forever.

When Jessamyn Elisdream sneaks into the palace in search of a lost family heirloom, she uncovers more than she bargained for. To keep Prince Nikolaus’s curse a secret, she is imprisoned in the palace until the witch’s spell can be broken.

Trapped inside the palace with the prince’s two changing forms, Jessamyn is caught in a war of good versus evil.

The prince versus his beast.

And a heart that betrays her.

A twisted retelling where Jekyll & Hyde meets Beauty & the Beast.


“If you’re a lover of Beauty and the Beast retellings with a creative twist and a swoon worthy romance, then this is a book that I would highly recommend! I absolutely can’t wait to read more from this author! I cannot wait for the sequel!”- Goodreads Review

“The plot twists in this novel were amazing. I did not expect what happened and it blew me off my feet. It was such an incredible ending and I can’t wait for book 2. If you’re a fan of fantasy romance and A Curse so Dark and Lonely, this is a book for you!”- Goodreads Review


I never knew I needed the existence of a Beauty and the Beast meets Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Not to mention there are sprinklings of other magical fairytale qualities throughout it that make it seem appropriately whimsical as far as settings go. Downen does a great job of giving us a creative retelling when there are so many out there already. This is yet another to enjoy. I actually found myself a little wary of how long it was (650 pages seems like a lot when you think of a YA retelling) and yet….for the most part; Downen made it work! That alone is an impressive feat. Having pacing remain pretty constant when you have that much is a task and so I didn’t think I’d get through this as fast as I did but Downen for ⅔ or so kept it at a quick pace. I also enjoy that our MC Jessamyn finds out so early on about the curse. It makes the fact that she’s part of this sort of curse-breaking team a new focus on the story than other retellings I’ve personally delved into. Another point that made me quite happy aside from the creative twist of the retelling was the fact that Jessamyn was a plus-sized/larger than average MC and I enjoyed watching Jessamyn not only struggle with that but how she sees herself versus how others see her and the disparity/body dysmorphia. It’s hard living in your own head when you see yourself in a negative light sometimes but this meant that Jessamyn had opportunity for growth. I also enjoyed how it wasn’t always the focus for Jessamyn, that she realistically loved how she looked at times and felt self conscious at others, it made me connect to her a lot. The other characters are fun to read about as well but hands down from the beginning my favorite character was Nik though I also enjoyed Commander Silver a lot. Truth be told, I actually think the best part of this novel is hands down the connection between the MC and LI, the enemies to lovers is done pretty well and is the sort of thing I actually said ‘aw’ out loud at a couple of times. Of course no MC is perfect and for me the flaws of reading Jessamyn were usually in the thinking department on her end. There were times I was exasperated at her choices. That at times could pull me from the story. And a slight note on the pacing; as fast as it usually was it would indeed SLOW down at times. There were a few filler chapters that I felt despite being cute were unnecessary and stalled the story so those weren’t my favorite. The beast is not quite what you think of but I liked that, I liked that his function was something more of a puppet on strings almost, and you’ll see as you read more about the curse if you read this. Overall a fun and intriguing read. 3.5/5 Cups of coffee from me. Thank you so much to the Author and Rockstar Book Tours for an eARC in exchange for my honest review. I would HIGHLY recommend this to those of you who love retellings, especially given the mash-up of retellings in one for this book.


About Catherine Downen:

Catherine Downen is a Young Adult author in both fantasy and contemporary romance. She graduated from Bradley University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. Currently, Catherine is working as an engineer in St. Louis while writing her books.

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Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive the full eBook Catalog from Catherine plus physical character art that will be shipped, US Only.

Ends October 18th, midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:



TikTok Review/IG Post


Under the Book Cover

Review/IG Post


Nagma | TakeALookAtMyBookshelf

IG Review



IG Review


The Caffeinated Reader

Review/IG Post

Week Two:



IG Review


A Bookish Dream

Review/IG Post


Book Reviews by Taylor

Review/IG Post


Jael Just Reading

Review/IG Post


Beers Books Boos

Review/IG Post

By TheCaffeinatedReader

A Caffeinated Reader and Musician, destined to write lacklustre book reviews with the over-ample amount of free time.

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