Summary: As the younger sister of the former Miss Mississippi and reality TV show star of Prince in Disguise, life feels real enough for Dylan. But since Dusty’s wedding to Scottish laird-to-be, Ronan, is going to be aired on the show, maid of honor and camera-shy Dylan finds herself in front of the camera as well. As she is whisked off to Scotland to film the lead-up to the big day, Dylan begins to discover that the show’s producers has even more surprises in store, including family secrets, long-lost relatives, and Dusty’s future-mother-in-law who decidedly doesn’t think Dylan’s sister is good enough for her son. At least Dylan has Jamie, an adorably bookish groomsmen, to relieve some of her stress… unless the show plans on making Dylan her own reality TV sensation.
My Rating: 5/5 Stars
Before reading Stephanie Kate Strohm’s Love à la Mode (one of my most anticipated 2018 releases), I wanted to read one of her other books. Enter Prince in Disguise, a book definitely on trend with royal and even pageantry-themed books in YA (see Rachel Hawkin’s Prince Charming and Julie Murphy’s Dumplin’) – two tropes that I tend to love as well! Prince in Disguise combines royalty and pageantry, along with reality TV!!), as Dylan’s Mississippi beauty queen and reality TV costar of a sister, Dusty, prepares to marry Scottish laird-to-be Ronan.
In short, I absolutely loved Prince in Disguise! It’s such a fun and all-around adorable read THAT ALSO HAPPENS TO TAKE PLACE AT CHRISTMAS! WHICH IF YOU CAN’T TELL, I DIDN’T KNOW GOING IN AND VERY HAPPY ABOUT! I tend to prioritize holiday-themed books in November and December, so the fact that my first read of December dealt took place around Christmas should’ve been the first sign that I would love this book. Not to mention that it also takes place in Scotland, further more proving the point that snowy Scotland during Christmas makes for the cutest contemporary setting (at least TRC, the company producing Dusty’s show, would agree).
Dylan was such a funny and charming main character and narrator. Although the book does delve into her relationship with Jamie, one of the most cute, British, book-loving love interests that you’ll ever meet, it does follow much of her relationship with her family and her role in the Prince in Disguise reality TV show. Dylan, as maybe expected, is quite camera shy and must learn how to deal with the spotlight in order to make her sister’s special day as perfect as possible. In addition, I really appreciated her well-built relationships with her mom and Dusty. While I expected Dusty to be this over-the-top beauty queen, she was much more down-to-earth and had a few heart-to-heart moments with her young sister (while of course wearing the latest and most pink designer clothes). I also enjoyed Dylan’s humor, which of course included ALL the Frozen references:
“Ronan revealed he was secretly a lord, and then he dropped to one knee and proposed to my sister. See? Ronan seemed nice, but he was probably insane. You don’t marry someone you just met. Did they have not have Frozen in Scotland?”
Going back to Dylan and Jamie’s relationship, I really enjoyed how they discover feelings for each other almost immediately from the start. Although the book only takes place over four weeks, I love how we get to see their relationship develop while also acknowledging that their time together is short (even though I would’ve made room in my carry-on back to the US for Jamie). The two just also do the most wintery (and cute) activities together, from carriage rides to baking to traveling through all the hidden passageways in Ronan’s estate.
Overall, I loved Prince in Disguise for its sweet romance and humor, as well as the focus on family and its Christmas-in-Scotland setting. I can’t wait to dive into Love à la Mode and Stephanie’s other books!
Have you read Prince in Disguise? What holiday reads are on your TBR? Share in the comments!