Review: How to Catch a Queen by Alyssa Cole

How to Catch a Queen by Alyssa Cole
Series: Runaway Royals #1
Publication Date: December 1st 2020
Links: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

An arranged marriage leads to unexpected desire, in the first book of Alyssa Cole’s Runaway Royals series…

When Shanti Mohapi weds the king of Njaza, her dream of becoming a queen finally comes true. But it’s nothing like she imagined. Shanti and her husband may share an immediate and powerful attraction, but her subjects see her as an outsider, and everything she was taught about being the perfect wife goes disastrously wrong.

A king must rule with an iron fist, and newly crowned King Sanyu was born perfectly fitted for the gauntlet, even if he wishes he weren’t. He agrees to take a wife as is required of him, though he doesn’t expect to actually fall in love. Even more vexing? His beguiling new queen seems to have the answers to his country’s problems—except no one will listen to her.

By day, they lead separate lives. By night, she wears the crown, and he bows to her demands in matters of politics and passion. When turmoil erupts in their kingdom and their marriage, Shanti goes on the run, and Sanyu must learn whether he has what it takes both to lead his people and to catch his queen.

I have been SO excited to read this book ever since I 1) saw the cover, 2) read the blurb, and 3) saw that it was a marriage of convenience! I especially loved reading the line that says “By night, she wears the crown, and he bows to her demands in matters of politics and passion.” I sadly didn’t quite love this new Alyssa Cole as much as I was hoping to – it’s a sloooow burn romance and very heavy on the royal politics. I wanted the story to focus more on our main couple, which was why How to Catch a Queen was a bit of a struggle for me to read.

Shanti and Sanyu enter a marriage of convenience when Shanti is chosen to be Sanyu’s queen. Shanti gets to live out her dream of being a queen so she can help others and Sanyu fulfills his father’s final request to marry, despite never wanting to inherit the throne. Love is not involved in the least, and it takes quite a long time for it to develop in this romance. We focus more on Shanti’s struggles with her awful treatment from Sanyu and his subjects and Sanyu torn between tradition and what he wants for his and his country’s future.

Alyssa Cole did a fantastic job bringing this fictional country of Njaza to life, with its rich, nuanced history. But after a while, the story did feel like it was dragging, especially the romance. There wasn’t enough of the romance between Shanti and Sanyu to satisfy me, which is why I have to give this 3.5 stars instead of the 4 it easily could’ve been. Still, it was a good start to this spinoff series of the Reluctant Royals, and I can’t wait to see where Alyssa Cole takes us next!


lacey


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Release Day Review: A Prince on Paper by Alyssa Cole

A Prince on Paper by Alyssa Cole
Series: Reluctant Royals #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: April 30th 2019
Links: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

The Reluctant Royals series returns with a good girl searching for the life that’s not too big, and not too small, and the bad boy prince who might be just right for her…

Nya Jerami fled Thesolo for the glitz and glamour of NYC but discovered that her Prince Charming only exists in her virtual dating games. When Nya returns home for a royal wedding, she accidentally finds herself up close and personal—in bed—with the real-life celebrity prince who she loves to hate.

For Johan von Braustein, the red-headed step-prince of Liechtienbourg, acting as paparazzi bait is a ruse that protects his brother—the heir to the throne—and his own heart. When a royal referendum threatens his brother’s future, a fake engagement is the perfect way to keep the cameras on him.

Nya and Johan both have good reasons to avoid love, but as desires are laid bare behind palace doors, they must decide if their fake romance will lead to a happily-ever-after.

Ever since reading and LOVING A Duke By Default, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on another Alyssa Cole novel. I love her writing and storytelling, and I was so excited for Nya and Johan’s story! Alyssa Cole did not disappoint with A Prince on Paper – it’s sexy, endearing, with a splash of humor put in. If you loved the other books in the series, or any time or royal romance, you need to read this one!

I love Alyssa Cole’s writing. Her stories come across almost like a fairy tale, and she makes you believe in true love. She heaps big doses of swoon and chemistry for Nya and Johan, who form a fake relationship. They go on a little adventure together, in bed and out of it, which only makes the tension between them heat up. And try as they might, they can’t help but have their real feelings get involved.

This third novel was a bit different from book two. It was a lot more serious and deeply emotional at times. I felt for Nya and the hurt she has experienced. There are a lot of complicated relationships that are explored in this novel, not just Johan and Nya’s. That being said, overall this is a FUN book that will light up your heart. It’s sexy, sweet, and very emotional.

I will definitely need to go back and read A Princess in Theory. I love Alyssa Cole’s words and highly encourage everyone to read them!


lacey


Reading Order: Reluctant Royals series

#1 ~ A Princess in Theory: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ A Duke by Default: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ A Prince on Paper: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads


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