RELEASED: September 5, 2019
PUBLISHER: Penguin Random House UK Children’s
FORMAT: eBook [AD], ARC [Thanks to Waterstones Brussels!]
GENRE: YA Contemporary
GOODREADS RATING: 3.87
TRIGGERS: Mention of roofie use, use of alcohol, cancer
REPS: LGBTQIA+ side characters, Latina MC
Meet the Washingtons – the most scandalous royal family ever!
HRH Princess Samantha has always been a royal rebel. She’s the spare not the heir, so no one minds too much who she dates or how hard she parties.
It helps that her sister, Princess Beatrice, is literally perfect. She’s demure, sweet and beautiful, and she knows that the crown always comes first – no matter what her heart might really want.
But they’re not the only ones with their eye on the throne. Daphne Deighton might be ‘newly noble’ but she won Prince Jefferson’s heart once, and she’ll do anything to get back into the court’s favour – and his bed.
If only she knew that her competition was a common nobody – plain little Nina Gonzalez, the daughter of the king’s secretary.
Together these four young women must navigate the drama, gossip, scheming and sizzling romance of the most glorious court in the world. There’s everything to play for – but there can only be one queen.
I saw the ARC of this book first at Waterstones Brussels, then discovered afterwards I already got approved on NetGalley for this ARC as well so.. I guess it was meant to be? It definitely sounded like my cup of tea. Royalty, drama.. Intrigue.. Like.. Sometimes a girl just needs a story like that and this one sounded perfect. But was it?
Long story short? Yes, definitely!
I adored the overall story and setting. I’ve always been intrigued by stories about royalty, even more so when it’s set in worlds I could see myself living in. Which was, of course, exactly the case with American Royals. Royalty, a palace, court drama.. And let’s add how a lot of us, at some point in our lives, dreamt about being royalty ourselves. I know I did? I was looking forward to losing myself in this book and.. boy, did I!
Character-wise I couldn’t complain either. There are four different POV’s, which means you’ll definitely click with at least one of those characters. On top of that, the author succeeds perfectly at making their voices unique. I never felt like I didn’t really know who’s POV I was in and.. that’s a huge plus!
The cast? Diversity galore! Not in the usual sense of me using the word, but more as in.. Beatrice is the future queen, Samantha is her younger – and wilder – sibling who’s allowed to go loose. Then there’s Nina, a commonor, yet Sam’s best friend. Daphne, our fourth POV, is part of one of the more upstanding families. Seeing their different views on the world they’re living in was interesting and entertaining – at times. Sometimes it was quite depressing as well.. I guess we forget how little freedom royalty has?
In any case, this kind of diversity added a lot to the story and the different POV’s. You get to see all sides of things which makes American Royals so much more interesting to read. You’re able to see both the dark and light.
For the story itself, I already mentioned I loved the court drama and there’s definitely plenty of that going on. Some things you feel like facepalming yourself over, but other things.. It simply feels like it could all genuinely happen in real, royal life. I think that’s what I liked about this book most?
Or maybe it’s how Nina has two moms so there’s also queer rep involved? Yup. That might definitely be my most favorite part of the whole thing.
I only have one minor thing to mention in this review and that’s how.. I sometimes felt like there was some depth missing relationship-wise. Some things just.. happened.. I didn’t always feel the sparks, the fire, the passion and that’s something I was honestly looking forward to. Especially since I’m set on feeling while reading a book and this one simply didn’t hit me in the feels like I wanted it to.
It might not have hit me in the feels like I expected it to, but there are some huge pluses to this story as well. If you like royalty and court drama, you should definitely pick this one up!
How do you feel about books like these? Do you like court drama like I do?
Have you ever dreamt of being royalty? Or, maybe you still do?
What would be your first “task” on the royal bucket list?