Arrow
Arrow
Slider
Book Reviews

Review: “The Royal We,” Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan

December 4, 2016
Review: “The Royal We,” Heather Cocks & Jessica MorganThe Royal We (Standalone)
Written by Heather Cocks, Jessica Morgan
Published April, 2015 by Head of Zeus
454 pages
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
Purchase: The Book DepositoryBookworldBooktopia
Add to Goodreads
three-stars

American Rebecca Porter was never one for fairy tales. Her twin sister, Lacey, has always been the romantic who fantasized about glamour and royalty, fame and fortune. Yet it's Bex who seeks adventure at Oxford and finds herself living down the hall from Prince Nicholas, Great Britain's future king. And when Bex can't resist falling for Nick, the person behind the prince, it propels her into a world she did not expect to inhabit, under a spotlight she is not prepared to face.

Dating Nick immerses Bex in ritzy society, dazzling ski trips, and dinners at Kensington Palace with him and his charming, troublesome brother, Freddie. But the relationship also comes with unimaginable baggage: hysterical tabloids, Nick's sparkling and far more suitable ex-girlfriends, and a royal family whose private life is much thornier and more tragic than anyone on the outside knows. The pressures are almost too much to bear, as Bex struggles to reconcile the man she loves with the monarch he's fated to become.

Which is how she gets into trouble.

Now, on the eve of the wedding of the century, Bex is faced with whether everything she's sacrificed for love-her career, her home, her family, maybe even herself-will have been for nothing.

It’s safe to say that being in the UK for one month gave me a bit of a case of ‘Royal Mania’. I’d been hearing things about The Royal We for quite some time, but due to mixed opinions, I never had given it a shot. I must admit I have a certain fondness from famous-boy-meets-common-girl tales, so this seemed really up my alley.

“There are plenty of people who like you just as you are. You should remember that when you start feeling like you’re being erased.”


In order to get through the massive 450 pages, you have to have a pretty good tolerance for predictable, fanfiction-like plot. Yes, it’s true – this book feels exactly like a William/Kate fanfiction even though our main character, Bex, is an American.

Bex meets heir to the English throne, Nicholas, at university. Everything plays out as you’d expect from Nicholas having an unruly yet lovable younger brother, an absent mother and disapproving father. There’s paparazzi, a high amount of public interest, a colourful band of loyal University chums and a good dose of scandal.

There were times that I found myself eye-rolling at the similarities to the real life romance. At one stage, Bex’s sister, Lacey, even dabbles in party planning like a certain Middleton sister. Certain aspects of The Royal We were ripped right from the pages of newspapers and gossip magazines and I found myself wondering just how much originality really lay within the book.

“No more apologies,” he says. “I don’t want you to think I’m holding something over you. I’m not. This isn’t a favor. This is just love.”

Being university-age characters, I expected something a little more ‘new adult’ than what Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan delivered with The Royal We. Bex, Nicholas and especially Bex’s twin, Lacey, felt for the most part immature and bland. This really impeded on my ability to sympathise with them, or even want to get to know them.

HOWEVER, things really began to come together as soon as Nick and Bex acted upon their feelings for one another. But what followed is an incredibly bumpy ride. It required a lot of patience to get through the rollercoaster of events that made up The Royal We. Through break-ups, hook-ups, tabloid stories blown out of proportion and general scheming from the palace players and an ungrateful sister, the story of Nicholas and Bex seemed to go on and on without any real direction. It’s hard to put into words my feelings about this; on one side, going on such a journey with the characters paid off in the long run, but on the other, the book could have been cut down considerably to make it more ‘readable’.

My approach to tackling this massive ebook included reading it over a course of a few weeks – in small doses. The upside of this was that it eventually began to feel like the characters were with me for quite some time. While parts dragged, reading it in this way sort of made the story resonate a little more. By the end of the book, I did feel as if I was saying goodbye to characters that had unexpectedly wormed their way into my heart.

“Whatever this is… it doesn’t happen twice in a lifetime. I’d rather work at this with you than settle for less with anyone else.”

Though our main focus was on Bex and Nick, I did feel that forbidden chemistry between Bex and ‘spare’ Freddie. Though entirely predictable, Prince Freddie was probably one of the highlights of The Royal We and the book would’ve been a lot less eventful had he been excluded from the story. ‘Lady Bollocks’ or Lady Beatrix “Bea” Larchmont-Kent-Smythe also was a standout character for me, looking back, even though at times I was often confused at the alternating use of her names by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan.

The supporting cast of characters were at times a little slack and the reality of ‘living in London’ is a whole lot different from what this book portrays. The ending itself felt a bit lacklustre, too, if I’m being honest. I’m struggling to remember the opening chapter and just where it slots into the grand scheme of things. I would have liked a little more of a ‘reward’ for getting through this bumper edition of a fanfiction.

The Royal We is an entertaining enough read if you’re prepared to devote yourself to a 400+ page book of ups and downs, loosely (sort of?) based on the real life royal couple. It’s far from perfect and entirely predictable if you know your current events, but there is a small glimmer of something good within this book if you’re willing to be patient.

About Heather Cocks

Heather Cocks is a die-hard sports fan, a Leo, an ex-reporter, a Notre Dame grad, a dual citizen of the U.S. and U.K., a sandwich enthusiast, and a former producer for America's Next Top Model.

About Jessica Morgan

Along with her partner-in-crime Heather Cocks, Jessica writes the popular celebrity fashion and pop culture blog Go Fug Yourself. She's a Southern California native and UCLA alumna who produced reality shows ranging from Growing Up Gotti to the docu-series 30 Days before leaving the world of TV to write full-time.

No Comments

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge