Summary (from the publisher):
When America won the Revolutionary War, its people offered General George Washington a crown. Two and a half centuries later, the House of Washington still sits on the throne. Like most royal families, the Washingtons have an heir and a spare. A future monarch and a backup battery. Each child knows exactly what is expected of them. But these aren’t just any royals. They’re American. And their country was born of rebellion.
As Princess Beatrice gets closer to becoming America’s first queen regnant, the duty she has embraced her entire life suddenly feels stifling. Nobody cares about the spare except when she’s breaking the rules, so Princess Samantha doesn’t care much about anything, either . . . except the one boy who is distinctly off-limits to her. And then there’s Samantha’s twin, Prince Jefferson. If he’d been born a generation earlier, he would have stood first in line for the throne, but the new laws of succession make him third. Most of America adores their devastatingly handsome prince . . . but two very different girls are vying to capture his heart.
My Rating: 5/5 Stars
Not only have I found my favorite royal fiction book, but I have found one of my favorite books of 2019: Katharine McGee’s American Royals!
American Royals takes place in a world where the United States became a monarchy instead of democracy, with George Washington as the first king. Present-day, twenty-one year old Beatrice is not only in line for the throne, but she’s set to become the first Queen of America. There’s a ton of pressure on Beatrice because of this, not to mention the pressure of having the perfect king-consort. Yes, this is where The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement vibes come in, as Beatrice is expected to marry an acceptable man when she becomes Queen. There’s no political pressure on Beatrice’s younger twin siblings, Jefferson and Sam, but there’s plenty of stress in their love lives. Sam finds herself falling for the one guy she can’t have, while two very different girls, including Sam’s best friend, Nina, have captured Jeff’s heart.
American Royals is perfect for fans of The Princess Diaries and YA and NA fiction. There isn’t a heavy emphasis on the politics, but it was so interesting diving into the world of America as a monarchy. Katharine McGee definitely did a ton of research to pull this off, and I loved her unique spin. Like many readers at the moment, I am a sucker for anything royal. Can I have the Queen’s wardrobe please? If not, catch me finding a reason to buy myself a royal-worthy ball gown.
The book is told from the third person perspectives of four main female characters, Beatrice, Sam, Nina ,and Daphne. I found myself most invested in Beatrice’s storyline because I always love her specific ‘royal trope’- being seen as the most responsible and most expected to keep themselves together, having to find themselves a king even though they would be an amazing queen without one, questioning if this is the life for them, etc. As much as Beatrice does question how her love life will affect her life as Queen, I loved her loyalty to her country. Her relationship with the King was also really heart-warming and heart-breaking. I was the most invested in her romance, rooting for her and her love interest throughout.
Sam and Daphne could have been made out to be characters that readers wouldn’t support. Sam experiences the most character growth over the course of the novel, and I’m glad she had more to her story by the second half than her love interest. Daphne is definitely a character I am not rooting for, but I still found myself not minding her perspective. Nina’s relationship to Sam and Jeff also brought some interesting dynamics to the story, as the ‘commoner’ who, although has grown up with the royals, still finds herself on the outside.
Contemporary and royal fiction fans, American Royals is the type of book that you just won’t be able to put down. Katharine McGee has the type of writing style that is just so easy to fall into, but there’s plenty of character and plot development to get lost into. There’s the right amount of drama, romance, friendship, and family that makes for such an enjoyable read.
Overall, I fell in love with American Royals for its easy-to-fall-into writing, the story, the characters and more—basically everything about this book met all of my reader’s feels and dreams. American Royals is for sure one of my favorite books of 2019, and I can definitely see it becoming one of my favorite series—yes, there will be another book and yes, I will have having all the fangirl screams until I read it.
American Royals comes out on September 3, 2019.
This review is based on an advance reader’s copy. By no means did receiving this ARC affect my thoughts or opinions.
Is American Royals on your TBR? Have you read any books by Katharine McGee? What are your favorite books about royalty? Share in the comments!