Beauty and the Beast (Paperback)
The great genre of short stories, with the unifying themes of love, faith and courage, had at one time flourished in literature. A truly underrated author, Bayard Taylor (1825-1878), had an exemplary ability to elucidate the good qualities in man, while humorously rejecting the ridiculous and banal. Unlike certain other writers of his generation who critiqued American culture through fiction, Taylor is never cruel, vulgar or simplistic, because he maintains a sympathetic resonance with his characters; an air of dignity is always present. The "fables" in Beauty and the Beast are entertaining and extremely well written, and readers will discover the many layers of meaning found within the plots.