Royal Blood

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Royal Blood
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
March 07, 2023
ISBN
978-0593485897
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As the King of England’s illegitimate daughter, 17-year-old Evan Bright knows a thing or two about keeping secrets. 
 
But when she’s forced to spend the summer in London with her father and the royal family, who aren’t exactly thrilled she exists, her identity is mysteriously revealed, and suddenly the world is dying to know every juicy lie the press prints about her. 
 
After a fun night turns deadly and Evan becomes the primary suspect in a murder investigation, the escalating rumors and fallout threaten to tear her life apart. As she fights to uncover the truth about what happened, she discovers royal secrets that are even more scandalous than she imagined – secrets that could change the monarchy forever.
 
And her own may be next.

Editor reviews

2 reviews
enthralling read
Overall rating
 
5.0
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5.0
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5.0
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5.0
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ROYAL BLOOD is an engaging YA contemporary/suspense. Evangeline (Evan) has just accidentally set her boarding school on fire, and the ensuing arrest was a bit more than she bargained for. Luckily, Jenkins is there to help her out and he whisks her away on a jet, saying he is taking her home. However, the home he means is not the one she is thinking of - he is taking her to her father's house. Though she has known who her father is, she has never actually really met him, as he is the king of England, and she is his illegitimate daughter.

As she travels to England and begins to get to know her father, and her half-sister, the heir apparent, Evan finds herself as a bit of a fish out of water. After a party goes wrong, Evan is assaulted and her assailant is found dead. Though she does not think she could have caused it, it is impossible to rule out the possibility. As the press and detectives close in, Evan will find herself in the middle of a media storm that she could never have anticipated and will be questioning everyone and everything she knows.

What I loved: This was such an enthralling read that captures the reader from the start. Evan's life was easy to get pulled into with the magic of having a royal/famous parent who is distant and a whole family unwilling to acknowledge her. As the story builds, it changes into something else with a mystery/suspense that becomes quite consuming. The elements of what happened are quite dark, as Evan was drugged for the purpose of assault, and though she was able to fight her way away, the details are fuzzy, so even she is unsure about whether she had a hand in the ensuing death.

The discussions around the assault are really important discussing the way that blame is given but undeserved and situations in which this may not be so readily understood, but should be. While the context of Evan's particular situation is given, this is juxtaposed with others and these discussions are quite powerful. Another really strong and important theme was around mental illness, in the case of Evan's mother. The way both of these situations play out were really well done and open the door to critical discussions that would work well for book groups or buddy reads.

Evan is a compelling character. Even while she acts out and seems a bit prickly, she is really just trying to find her place in the world and people she can care for. Her life has been in turmoil since she was little. She lived with her grandmother while her mother was receiving treatment, until her death, and then her father's custody, which meant constant boarding schools. She cares deeply for her mother, but has not allowed herself to care for others as deeply for reasons she is still understanding herself. Her growth during the story opens herself up to difficult truths, but also to people for which she can care.

There ended up being a few consuming mysteries that kept the story moving quickly. This ended up being a read that kept the pages turning late at night to figure out what was happening and how all the chips would fall - with some good twists along the way.

Final verdict: ROYAL BLOOD is a consuming and enthralling YA contemporary/suspense that will hook readers from the very start! Highly recommend picking this one up!
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Royal Blood
(Updated: December 16, 2022)
Overall rating
 
5.0
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5.0
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5.0
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5.0
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Seventeen-year-old Evan Bright has been in and out of boarding schools. She's also the illegitimate daughter of the King of England. When disaster hits her last boarding school, she finds herself in London with a father she doesn't remember and his current royal family. Her stepmother resents her presence and her stepsister Maisie is a total royal pain. Then scandal hits again only this time Evan finds herself the primary suspect in a murder investigation. Rumors build and she doesn't know who to trust. Other secrets come out that could change the monarchy forever. Plus, one of her own that she's willing to do anything to protect.

What worked: Totally addictive story of an American teen who gets sucked into a royal scandal. I'm a huge fan of novels with royalty! I really loved Evan. She's been through so much but refuses to let others get to her. She knows she's the daughter of the King of England and resents that he hasn't reached out to her. So when she finds herself in London and in not only his presence but his current family? She doesn't expect to get accepted-and she isn't. She figures once she turns eighteen she'll go back to America. That's when things change.

Princess Mary at first is the entitled snobby British princess who resents Evan and isn't afraid to show her contempt. But what I liked is that the author fleshes out Mary to not be that stereotypical evil stepsister. There are also other characters like Kit who is supportive throughout Evan's ordeal. King Alexander slowly comes out and shares what really happened between Evan's mother and him. And of course, the UK press with their salacious attempts to destroy Evan.

The mystery of who really killed Jasper isn't obvious and I was surprised by the reveal. There is a sensitive topic of sexual harassment and what happened to Evan at a party. Also, mental illness is mentioned. The author does have an interview where schizophrenia isn't shown in a way that enforces the stigma.

Engaging twist on an American teen's encounter with a deadly royal scandal. The portrayal of the extent social media and tabloids go after scandals within royal circles is shown in realistic detail. But it's mostly a story of a courageous teen who doesn't shy away from the truth even when most of the world thinks she's guilty.
Good Points
1. Engaging twist on an American teen deadly royal scandal
2. Addictive and totally captivating read
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I LOVED this book
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This was, by far, one of my favorite books, and that's saying something, considering I've already read around 80 books this month. The plot of the book was amazing, although I won't give any spoilers. All I can really say is that the book was amazing, and I would give it a 100000/10.
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