Genre: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Publication date: May 6th 2014
Dragged on a family trip to Europe’s ancient cities, Becca wants nothing more than to go home. Trapped with her emotionally distant father, over-eager stepmother, and a brother who only wants to hook up with European hotties, Becca is miserable. That is until she meets Nikolai, a guy as mysterious as he is handsome. And she unknowingly finds herself with a runaway prince.
Nikolai has everything a guy could ask for-he's crown prince, heir to the throne, and girls adore him. But the one thing he doesn't have...is freedom. Staging a coup, he flees his kingdom and goes undercover on his own European tour.
When Nikolai and Becca meet, it’s their differences that draw them together. Sparks fly as they share a whirlwind of adventures, all the while dodging his royal guard. But Becca's family vacation ends in a matter of days. Will Nikolai and Becca be forced to say goodbye forever, will his destiny catch up to him, or will they change history forever?
-A copy was provided by HarperCollins for review-
Well so freaking adorable! While perusing reviews it seems like more than a few of my friends disliked this one, and I admit that it’s not perfect by any means so I get it, but it’s exactly the kind of fluffy fairy-tale-esque read I was in the mood for on a rainy weekend. It’s the type of romantic adventure that is both idealistic and exotic; perfect for fans of Jennifer E. Smith.
What I didn’t like:
-Insta-love ruined some of its charm for me. It was unnecessary and did more harm than good on how I felt about the book. There was not even a built-up to it, suddenly they were just declaring their love. Well okay then!
-These kids are both 18 years old – legal adults – yet both are still being ordered by their parents as if they were 14. No kidding, the prince got hunted down by his parents’ security team, taken back home by force and grounded. Do adults with parents have no freedom rights in this fictional country? Although, Becca who’s American was also dealing with needing permission from her father (her AND her older brother of at least 19 years) and eventually got grounded as well, so this made no sense to me.
-Nikolai sounded very American to me. I didn’t feel he was written very European-like, in terms of dialogue especially.
-Becca’s hate towards this trip was a bit much at times. It could have been toned down while still communicating the fact that this ruse of being this perfect family was a drag. I didn’t see it as her hating Europe like some, though, just that she hated being stuck under her father and stepmother’s heels. But still.
What I did like:
-The atmosphere is fun, light, and I found details on European history quite compelling – which is saying something coming from a not-a-history-buff-at-all person like myself. With that said I can’t say how accurate all the details are, but it really brought the setting to life.
-Aside from the insta-love aspect, the romance is adorable and yes, cliché at times, but fluffy in a way that made me smile. Like reading a too-good-to-be-true-but-fun-nonetheless fairy-tale. Also, I’m the type who finds themselves fascinated by celebrity lifestyles and what it means to be in the public eye every second of your life, and him being a Prince trying to hide-out gave it that extra zing.
-The growth in Becca’s character. Being in a foreign country and having been through a very… interesting vacation, she seemed to really find herself. She ends up figuring out what she really wants in life. She also doesn’t let heartbreak turn her into a mess, but rather uses it to drive her forward and I found that wonderful.
-The HEA ending, because sometimes we just need them.
So this may not be a perfect novel where everything is to be praised, and the characters are depicted more for the purpose of the book than anything, but it’s one of those fun beach reads that pauses life for a few hours in a fool’s paradise.
3.5 Hot Espressos
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