Okay, time for some of my infamous brutal honesty here.
If your book has ‘prince’ or ‘princess’ or ‘royal’ in the title, it damn well better feature an actual member of a fictional royal family. Not just an American socialite behaving like a spoiled brat and being indulged in that by some idiot thinking with an organ between his legs.
Royal romances are a specific genre within romance. If I’m in the mood to read one, I want castles and tiaras, not department stores and designer dress brands, which is what I got from this book. I have no problem with a princess using her wealth and position to do philanthropic good works, as Cara, the heroine of this book does, but I do have an issue with her doing stupid stuff. Like when the villain of the piece tells her ‘He’s a hacker!’ about the computer expert love interest who’s been helping her clean up her online presence and suddenly this is cause for her to doubt the love interest. Who she’s very nearly related to, since their siblings are about to get married. And since they’re both from wealthy, powerful families, have presumably already exhumed and dealt with all the skeletons on the family tree. Really? That was the best you could come up with for contrived drama? She already KNEW he was a hacker. He’d been hacking on her behalf. He TOLD her about it. But the villain puts it into words and suddenly she has doubts? Oh please.
Aidan, the aforementioned computer expert, was both too good to be true and too aggravating for words. He’s one of those annoying types who tells you he’ll take care of everything For Your Own Good and of course his way turns out to be the best way anyway, so the heroine simpers and assures him how much she loves him. Despite him doing nasty crap like investigating her as well as the villain. Just in case she’s the liar, because she might be trying to… uh, I’m not quite sure. Embezzle her own money? It was never explained quite what Aidan thought she might be guilty of, or what possible justification he might have for not accepting her word for it she was being scammed.
Maybe I was primed to be annoyed by this book once I realised the title had scammed me, but I didn’t like either of the main characters. Cara was both spoiled and silly, and Aidan was arrogant. His investigating of Cara’s background verged on stalkery once they were romantically involved, as did his controlling of her movements and surveillance, all For Her Own Good, of course. (Mm, smell that sarcasm!)
This is the third in a series about the Castles of Dallas (Aidan’s family) and it does not stand well alone. I wouldn’t recommend starting here, anyway. Frankly, I wouldn’t recommend it at all. Two stars.
The Runaway Princess Bride is available now.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGalley.