Book Thoughts

The Belles Book Cover The Belles
Dhonielle Clayton
Young Adult Fiction
Disney Electronic Content
February 6, 2018

In the world of Orleans, where everyone is born gray, the Belles are important, for they control Beauty, and Beauty is the most precious commodity there is.

Camellia is a Belle and what she  wants most in the world is to be chosen as the Queen's favorite. But she soon learns that the job is not what she or her sisters expected. Dark secrets are hidden behind gilded doors, and while her magic makes her dangerous, it also puts her life at peril.

This book is something special. If you are a visual reader there's so much to delight in. Every paragraph is a feast for the senses. The world is gorgeous, and the worldbuilding feels effortlessly unique. All the beauty stands in sharp contrast to the sinister truths lurking just slightly beneath the surface. Reading this book is like slowly eating the most delicious ice cream sundae and realizing there's something rotten in the middle.

The story takes it's time immersing you in the rules of this world and the lives of the Belles, before galloping to its conclusion. But even though it started a bit slow, there were so many intriguing things about the story that it was hard to lose interest.

If you like lush, original, fantasies, then you will love the Belles.




If I’ve been quiet this March it’s because things have been brewing in the background.

I can finally announce: I’ve signed with Samantha Bagood of Samantha B. Literary! I’m thrilled, because now this book (and my career) has found an enthusiastic champion. And I’m excited to see what comes next!

How did I get my agent? Simple cold query. First I made sure my query was working, and throughout the process I continued to revise my manuscript whenever I received good feedback. Samantha ended up with the best (and latest) version of the manuscript, so I had a little luck with timing too.

It’s a huge relief to come to the end of the agent hunt and I’m feeling more relaxed than I have in a long time. Still, some days I wake up so nervous that I’m shaking and I doubt that I can do this. But I have to remind myself that I need to tackle what’s next just how I’ve done it before: keep learning, keep writing. There is no such thing as a perfect story, but there is the best I can do at the time – and that has to be enough. So next is revisions and making this story the best I can.



  • Steering the Craft by Ursula LeGuin
  • American Panda by Gloria Chao
  • Love Hate and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed
  • The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton