BWW Review: THE ROYAL WE by Heather Cocks And Jessica Morgan
With the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle this coming Saturday, everyone has frothy white gowns and wedding bells on the brain. Face it: We're all going to be camped out in front of the TV watching the Wedding of the Year. Why not bring a book with you to read during the commercials? And what better book than THE ROYAL WE by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan, literally a book bringing the royal fantasy we all have to life?
Rebecca "Bex" Porter didn't go to Oxford in the hopes of nabbing herself a prince. She didn't even recognize him when she met him--and he was the first person she saw at Oxford! In fact, he wasn't even the first person she dated there, and they were friends for a long time before they dipped their toes into the murky dating waters. Bex was always more interested in discovering herself and what she wanted in life. She'd always lived in her twin sister Lacey's shadow and done whatever Lacey was interested in. Transferring to Oxford was something Bex did for herself . Now, the tables are turned, and as the omnipresent eyes of the paparazzi fall on Bex and Nick, it's Lacey being pushed into the shadows. Can the twins survive the maelstrom threatening to break their close bond, or is it already too late?
If you're a fan of wish fulfillment novels or enjoy reading the daily rags for updates on the Royal Family, you're going to really enjoy THE ROYAL WE. I don't really follow celebrity gossip, but even I know that Princess Kate--errr, Catherine-- was born a commoner and knew William for several years before they got married. Likewise, Bex--errr, Rebecca-- knew Nicolas for a long time (and they even broke up for two years!) before they got engaged and was born a commoner -- and an American, no less. And the press will seemingly forever refer to them as Kate Middleton and Bex Porter despite their official titles... There are other parallels, too. Prince William's mother was killed in a paparazzi chase; while not dead, Nicholas' mother was destroyed by the paparazzi in other ways. Some parallels are smaller than others, and astute Royal watchers will likely recognize them all.
The book was a fast read, though it started to feel long by the end just because we were covering a DECADE of life. Just when I started to really feel the length, things picked up and the momentum began moving again, which worked out well for the pacing. None of the characters were perfect, but that just made them seem more human--Not even princes! There was also a good cast of supporting characters, some more prominent than others. I liked the oddball quirkiness of Joss and her "designer" eye, and I liked the lightness that Nick's younger brother Freddie brought to the table. Some characters that I started off disliking became more nuanced by the novel's end while others became more dislikable over time.
THE ROYAL WE is a stand-alone novel, but I could see Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan writing a sequel, especially considering the open-ended finale. I definitely wanted an extra chapter or an epilogue to tie everything up! For now, everyone will have to settle for reading all the gossip rags to get details on the real-life newborn baby prince and the real-life royal soon-to-be-newlyweds!!