Samantha Rousseau is used to getting her hands dirty. Working toward a master’s degree in wildlife biology while helping take care of her sick father, she has no time for celebrity gossip, designer clothes, or lazy vacations. So when a duchess from the small country of Lilaria invites her to dinner, Samantha assumes it’s to discuss a donation for the program. The truth will change the course of her life in ways she never dreamed.
Alex D’Lynsal is trying to keep his name clean. As crown prince of Lilaria, he’s had his share of scandalous headlines, but the latest pictures have sent him packing to America and forced him to swear off women—especially women in the public eye. That is, until he meets Samantha Rousseau. She’s stubborn, feisty, and incredibly sexy. Not to mention heiress to an estate in his country, which makes her everyone’s front-page news.
While Sam tries to navigate the new world of politics and wealth, she will also have to dodge her growing feelings for Alex. Giving in to them means more than just falling in love; it would mean accepting the weight of an entire country on her shoulders.
I loved this book. Do you hear me???
I FRIGGING LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT.
Where do I even begin?
I don’t even… How do I…
Phew! Okay, I’m calm.
So, I started reading this after DNFing a “highly anticipated” novel by one of the “most successful authors of our time”. I stumbled across it on a whim, saw it was 99 cents on B&N and thought “What the hell?”
Best. Move. EVER.
I needed this book. It came along just when I was beginning to become truly cynical. It took me completely by surprise, slapped me in the face and reminded me why I LOVE reading.
Okay, brief synopsis: Samantha is an American grad student who finds out she’s the long lost heir to a duchy in (fictional) Lilaria, a small principality similar to Monaco that also has some similarities to both the UK and France. One of the kingdom’s duchesses and the heir to the throne come to fetch her.
Enter the leading man: His Royal Highness Alexander Patrick Fitzwilliam, the Duke of D’Lynsal and heir to the crown of Lilaria. What a mouthful huh? (heh, heh)
He’s one of the most attractive leading men that I’ve come across in a long, LONG time. He’s charming. He’s suave. He’s caring, devoted and gawgeous. He’s chivalrous without being overbearing or an “alpha”.
Oh, and he’s a frigging PRINCE. Need I say more?
He and Sam have this electric chemistry from the onset that literally had me chewing at the bit for them to hook up. I don’t know how many times I selfishly thought “Just hump already!!!”.
And when they do finally get together?
Sam is easily one of my favorite main characters of the year. No joke. She says things like “Meh” and “Eat-shit-and-die”. Her favorite genre to read is paranormal romance (STFU, me too! Besties!), she’s not a Mary Sue and she isn’t an emotional mess. She was so likeable that I have pages of reading notes about the funny things she said and did. We have a total bromance going on. But for girls. Homance? Nope, bad connontations. Hermance? Hmmm… I’ll work on it.
She was totally believable in her role as a surprised, semi-reluctant duchess. Not only was she believable but the logistics that it took to set her up in that role were too. I feel like Chase put a lot of effort into making the transition from average American college student to European nobility as accurate as possible and I really commend her for the sheer amount of stuff she managed to cram in without making it seem like an overload of information.
She also shows a lot of the downside to being a royal, complete with fortune hunters, awkward public appearances and crazy photogs. You hear things about how celebrities are hounded by paparazzi but I don’t think it really sinks in just what they’ll try to do for a picture. This novel makes you sympathize with the people that have finally lost it and punched a pap in the face.
Best part about this book?
NO BULLSHIT, PETTY HIGH SCHOOL RELATIONSHIP DRAMA.
I was nervous the whole time I was reading it because I thought there was no way in hell I’d be able to make it through a contemporary, fairy tale-ish romance without some stupid misunderstandings on the part of the main characters or at least some self destructive behavior. I’m here to tell you, worry not! Neither of the characters are emotionally crippled, neither are crazy jealous, neither need constant reassurance from the other…they just…I mean. GAH!
This book was one part The Princess Diaries, one part gigglefest, one part tear jerker and a whole bunch of schmexy. Oh, and the ending left me like this:
You should totally read it!