The Royal We

Nov 13, 2021

My review

3/5 stars

I'd seen so munch hype about this book in a Facebook group for book lovers, so I had to give it a go. I've enjoyed books like this in the past - books that have used the Royal Family as inspiration for a romance story (see my review of Before The Crown) - so I was hoping that this would be no different.

There are many parallels with the Royal Family as we know it today. The American meeting the heir to the throne at university and falling in love was obviously a combination of the Cambridge and Sussex relationships. The on/off natu1cause of death) and tough-loving father gave off Charles and Diana vibes. All in all, there were a lot of pop-culture references, and to be honest, I can't decide whether it added to the reading experience or not. The familiarity of the plot was great, but at times it was hard to focus on the fictional characters over the real people they've been loosely based on.

Speaking of things I wasn't sure about, the romance between Nick and Bex had me flitting between finding it charming and finding it annoying; I'm not sure if that was intentional or not, as it seemed to plot against the timeline of their relationship. Breaking down the book into several parts gave a very clear definition to the nature of their relationship at any given moment in time, and it was whole parts that had me flipping between moods, just as the characters did. It denotes good writing in a way, but I came for the romance so feeling frustrated was jarring. This is reflected in the fact that it took me 3 months to get from start to finish - I picked it up and read half of it in one go, and then read several other books before going back to finish it. It was enjoyable but not attention-grabbing.

The thing I enjoyed most about it was the characterisation throughout - every single person in the story was given depth, personality and meaning, and every single one (lead or secondary) added interest and purpose to the story. Everyone was three-dimensional, displaying admirable traits and flaws throughout the book. Despite the story being about Nick and Bex, I found Freddie to be my favourite character, for his unique blend of cocky humour and vulnerability. I'd love to see more of him in the sequel.

I will be reading the sequel, as I hate leaving a story unfinished when I know there's more to read. Check back soon to see what I thought.

Book blurb

Rebecca Porter was never one for fairy tales. Her twin sister is the romantic who fantasizes about glamour, fame and fortune – Bex has always been a tomboy. So when she spends a year at Oxford, and finds herself living down the hall from Prince Nicholas, she is the only girl not interested in dating the future king.

But eventually Bex can't resist falling for Nick, and as their friendship turns to romance, Bex becomes immersed in ritzy society, dazzling ski trips, and dinners at Kensington Palace – a world away from her humble upbringing.

The relationship also comes with unimaginable baggage: hysterical tabloids, Nick's sparkling ex-girlfriends, and a family whose private life is much thornier and more tragic than anyone on the outside knows. The pressures are almost too much to bear, as Bex struggles to reconcile the man she loves with the monarch he's fated to become.

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You can buy the book here now. It was published by Head of Zeus.

For more on the authors, you can head to their website, follow them on Twitter, or check out their Goodreads page.