Royals by Rachel Hawkins
Release date: May 1, 2018
Summary: Meet Daisy Winters. She’s an offbeat sixteen-year-old Floridian with mermaid-red hair; a part time job at a bootleg Walmart, and a perfect older sister who’s nearly engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. Daisy has no desire to live in the spotlight, but relentless tabloid attention forces her to join Ellie at the relative seclusion of the castle across the pond.
While the dashing young Miles has been appointed to teach Daisy the ropes of being regal, the prince’s roguish younger brother kicks up scandal wherever he goes, and tries his best to take Daisy along for the ride. The crown–and the intriguing Miles–might be trying to make Daisy into a lady . . . but Daisy may just rewrite the royal rulebook to suit herself.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Royal-mania is hitting YA again. Of course The Princess Diaries is the most notable YA instance of royalty in a contemporary setting, but ever since Prince William and Catherine married, royalty (in real and made up countries) pops up every now and then. This trope can be tricky, but I think Royals succeeded where last year's offering, Prince in Disguise, failed.
I think this mainly had to do with Rachel Hawkins's writing. It felt more polished and like she was taking herself seriously, while also being like, "Look this book isn't very serious. But you'll have loads of fun reading it." And I did. It was trope-y as heck, but I hardcore shipped Daisy and Miles. The only character I really didn't like was the queen, because she felt just too stereotypical. But I enjoyed Daisy and Ellie's parents - they definitely had personalities - and I loved Daisy's friendship with Isa.
I also appreciated that there wasn't unnecessary drama, something I think Prince in Disguise had too much of.
There was a little foul language, some underage drinking (although I guess for some of the characters it wasn't underage in Scotland), and some sexual innuendos.
The Verdict: Everything I wanted Prince in Disguise to be.
Will I be adding this book to my library?: I think so.