Taming the Beast (Emily Maguire)

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At the tender age of fourteen, Sarah Clark is seduced by her thirty-eight-year-old English teacher, Daniel Carr, and becomes entangled in an illegal, erotic, passionate, and dangerous affair—a vicious meeting of minds and bodies that ends badly. Devastated by grief and longing, Sarah embarks upon a series of meaningless self-abasing sexual encounters, hoping to reclaim the intensity of that first relationship. Then, seven years later, Carr unexpectedly returns and Sarah is drawn again into a destructive coupling. Now that she is no longer an innocent young girl, is she strong enough to finally tame the beast within her?

A modern Lolita, Taming the Beast is an emotionally unflinching and alluring tale that introduces a powerful new writer. 


I’m torn. Really, I am. Who was the Beast? Sarah? Daniel? I don’t know. But I liked it. What kind of person does that make me? Let’s stick with masochist.

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It almost feels completely wrong to like this book. I feel like most people would not take pleasure in reading Taming the Beast…at all. The emotions it evokes is almost shocking. It was just a disturbing read. Depressing. Dark. I felt so lonely when I was reading it. My mouth hung open a lot.

If you want to read about a self destructive character then Sarah is your girl. She was unloveable, sad, lonely, and very hard to relate to in the sense that readers look for when reading a book. No connection what so ever because you’re too busy being in a constant state of shock at the things that she keeps doing.

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The book gives you a deep insight at the occurrences of self loathing in individuals and the full cycle of abuse. The terror of leaving it. The want for it. Which was pretty much spot on. The author depicted Sarah’s need impeccably.

Three stars because the ending was a complete joke. It was a terrible way to end the book and it ruined everything for me. Everything.

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All I know is, I liked it. I ain’t even ashamed to admit it. Get a better ending and then we’ll talk.

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