Thursday, November 8, 2012

ARC Review: A Royal Pain by Megan Mulry

A Royal Pain
Author: Megan Mulry
Publication: Sourcebooks Landmark (November 1, 2012)

Description: A life of royalty seems so attractive...until you're invited to live it...

Smart, ambitious, and career driven, Bronte Talbot started following British royalty in the gossip mags only to annoy her intellectual father. But her fascination has turned into a not-so-secret guilty pleasure. When she starts dating a charming British doctoral student, she teases him unmercifully about the latest scandals of his royal countrymen, only to find out—to her horror!!—that she's been having a fling with the nineteenth Duke of Northrop, and now he wants to make her...a duchess?

In spite of her frivolous passion for all things royal, Bronte isn't at all sure she wants the reality. Is becoming royalty every American woman's secret dream, or is it a nightmare of disapproving dowagers, paparazzi, stiff-upper-lip tea parties, and over-the-top hats?

My Thoughts: Chick lit meets romance....and they have a beautiful baby! I read a lot of romances but don't read chick lit at all. I have never seen an episode of Sex in the City. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed this romance between career-driven Bronte Talbot and British graduate student Max Heyworth. He neglects to mention that he is next inline to be the Duke of Northrop. 

They were supposed to meet at a party thrown my mutual friends but his flight was late and she was swept up by Mr. Texas. She and Mr. Texas begin a whirlwind affair that ends up with her moving to Chicago to be with him and then deciding that he is only in it for fun and doesn't really want her. She is heartbroken and decides to find a Transitional Man - someone for a quick affair but nothing emotional and certainly nothing lasting. Only she stumbles over Max in a used bookstore and he isn't ready to fall in with her plans.

Both Max and Bronte have parent issues. Bronte's father was an incredibly bitter elitist. Bronte chose to rebel by going into advertising instead of something more academic and she also developed a fierce need to control her own life and not give in to any pressure from a man. Max's mother was a neglectful parent who didn't bond with any of her three youngest children. She was always emotionally distant. Max was raised by his loving father which gives him a more open heart. Of course, being in line to be a duke also gives him a certain level of arrogance and desire to control those around him. 

These two strong people meet head on and have to find ways to compromise that will satisfy both of them. The romance was very realistic and still very romantic. Bronte doesn't find it easy to fall in love and change her life. She is the cautious type who needs time to think about things before she commits. Max is more ready to jump into a relationship. He makes up his mind quickly and is sure and confident about his choices. 

Fans of both chick lit and traditional contemporary romances will both enjoy this story. I enjoyed the emotional intensity of this story and could really understand the viewpoints of both main characters. 

Favorite Quote:
Max looked at this incredibly beautiful woman and wondered what had happened to make her so skittish, so totally unwilling to just move forward at a normal pace with a (relatively) normal guy in a normal romantic relationship. But, as it was, he supposed it was worth it to play by her strange rules of engagement, no mention of lasting tenderness, no long-term plans, no future. And certainly no mention of his title. If an eight-week affair with a run-of-the-mill graduate student made her jumpy, he could only imagine what a potential future with the nineteenth Duke of Northrop would do to her precarious equilibrium.
I received this eARC from Netgalley. You can buy your copy here.


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