Find some bookish love with 'Beauty and the Beast'

By by dianna
Sept. 26, 2012 at 4:26 a.m.

How do you know if it's true love?

Well, according to my 9-year-old self, you'll know he's the real thing if he gives you a library.

There are a lot of romantic shows out there, but "Beauty and the Beast" has been the pinnacle of romance for me since I first saw it way back when.

Disney took the classic fairy tale about real love and beauty coming from within and made it into a beloved movie in 1991.

A few years later, they took the story of how bibliophile Belle falls for Beast - and his library - and turned it into a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical. I remember scoffing at the idea - how could they have dancing furniture, let alone a library that looked anything like the one on the big screen.

Needless to say, I was a fool to doubt those folks over at Disney.

The musical ran on Broadway for a decade and it's incredible - library scene included.

See, Belle and the Beast don't get along at first, which I guess is understandable since he's keeping her prisoner. They find common ground through books, discovering a world that can take you out of the confines of your life and let you, for a little while, be in someone else's shoes, seeing the world through another pair of eyes. As much as good company - and, you know, true love - taught the Beast to get over being upset about being a beast. I've always thought books must have helped with that. It's hard to stay outside of humanity, to keep your anger and bitterness in place, when you've discovered a way to connect by paging through a book.

The music is even better when heard in person, and it's hard to get over the awe and wonder that comes with seeing a really hairy Beast sing and dance along with Cogsworth, Lumiere and Mrs. Potts.

The show is on tour across the country, swinging through Houston through Sunday. So, go check it out.

Also, those trying to come up with ways to court that book-loving type, get 'em a library. It's a sure thing, according to 9-year-old me.



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