Anne Rice The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty Story and Review

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Anne Rice, The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, is based on the famous Disney character and is the first novel in the Sleeping Beauty trilogy.

If you want to read The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty online free, you should first have a heads-up about what the story is like!

What is The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty?

Anne Rice, an American author, created the famous The Sleeping Beauty Quartet, and she used the pseudonym A.N. Roquelaure.

You might ask why there was necessary to use a pseudonym for writing a novel that was a fairy tale. Well, as we all know, living in a male-dominated heteronormative society can be difficult for those who do not identify with either. Also, writing erotic novels by a female writer was an unacceptable deed.

So, The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, was written in 1983. It was an erotic BDSM novel set in a fantasy world of medieval times. It kind of loosely drew from the original fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty. So, no, Anna Rice was not using a pseudonym to write a fairy tale. Instead, she used it to write four erotic novels.

The other novels in the series other than The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty are Beauty’s Punishment, Beauty’s Release, and Beauty’s Kingdom.

The novels depict the sexual adventures of Beauty, the female main character, and other male characters like Laurent, Tristan, and Alexi. There are vivid descriptions of pony play, ephebophilia, homosexuality, and bisexuality.

This 253-page novel was published by E.P. Dutton, New York, USA. The book also has audio versions, released in cassette versions.

Amy Brenneman read The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty. Elizabeth Montgomery read Beauty’s Punishment. Michael Diamond played Tristan’s role.

aurora sleeping beauty

Background of The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty

Let’s have a look at the background of Claiming of Sleeping Beauty.

Anne Rice was hugely successful after she wrote Interview with the Vampire in 1976. After that, she began writing two historical novels, Cry to Heaven in 1982 and The Feast of All Saints in 1979.

However, none of these novels were critically acclaimed or commercially successful. Readers reviewed that The Feast of All Saints was very dense for an easy, relaxing read.

There were immense negative reviews for Cry to Heaven as well. So, if you are a fan of Anna Rice The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, then you should also know that it wasn’t her first hit. It came after several ups and downs.

Initially, in the 1960s, she explored the domain of erotic novels. So, after her immense loss at writing historical novels, she decided to return to erotica.

Her pseudonym granted her the creative freedom that she needed. Only in the 1990s did she come out as the book’s author.


So, let’s look at the summary of The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty novel.

As happens with fairy tales, Beauty is fast asleep in the novel’s first chapter when a prince in shining armor comes and awakens her. However, there is a plot twist.

It’s not a kiss that awakens her. Instead, nonconsensual sexual intercourse did the work. He then captivated her after stripping her and taking her to his kingdom, where she was trained and treated as an enslaved person.

She also had co-slaves who were princesses and princes sent by the kingdom to their parents in the form of tributes. In their training years, they are trained to perform nonconsensual sex and become submissive and obedient sexual property. At times, they are also humiliated publicly.

During confinement, Beauty met with Prince Alexi, another slave with whom she got engaged in a passionate sexual encounter.

Alexi initially was not a submissive person. He even tried to break through his imprisonment. However, the selfish Queen sent him to the castle’s kitchen, where he was treated mercilessly.

He began to lose his senses and soon subject to humiliating training by a strong boy. After that, he became a submissive slave and played in tune with the Queen’s command.

However, Alexi’s story did not impact Beauty, and she continued to disobey her master’s orders. So, in the book’s final chapter, we see her sentenced to the neighboring village. Here she faces merciless slavery and torture. Interestingly, we also see that the master of Beauty wept when she went away to the village.

Reviews and criticisms

If you are wondering how to read The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty online for free, there are many websites. Also, many blogs have even reviewed the novel.

The story is a twist to the original story where a loving prince comes and awakens Beauty. However, in this novel, we see a complete turn of events where a Prince comes and undergoes sexual intercourse to bring Beauty into consciousness. This prince is demeaning and of the utmost cruelty.


As far as the novel’s writing style is concerned, there are many criticisms. According to some, the style is a little archaic making the novel look older than it is. However, the style is very flowery and pretty.

The novel reflects the fantasy genre and set where BDSM is the usual way of life. So, it is far from evocating realism.

The novel and its writing style have a certain charm that gives the feel of a baroque painting. On the one hand, the novel is very fanciful and vibrant, while on the other, it is oddly still.


This is where most of the reviewers will converge- the novel’s worldbuilding is poor. It is, in a word, nothing but a porno universe where there is no place for anything consensual or passionate.

There is no place for any political exploration. Moreover, even the BDSM scenes are not well-crafted as they should have been.

Final Thoughts

Even though there are problems in this book, this is a good read if you want to experience some steamy writing. While Lolita might be the cult classic in that genre, reading The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty might also serve the purpose of a lazy time-pass.

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