Hello book lovers, welcome back! As usual, today’s #TalkTuesday interview is also our #TeaserTuesday and First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros! Enjoy!
A Royal Kiss & Tell by Julia London is the latest of two books that show why she is “Queen of the Banter,” writing family-focused funny and endearing tales with snappy, witty, and teasing dialogue between the hero and heroine.
A Royal Kiss & Tell has some very funny moments as the hero, Prince Leopold and heroine, Lady Caroline Hawke argue and confront each other. For example, Caroline says to him, “given that your feathers have flocked together with his. I’d rather be vain than ill-mannered like you.” His response, “I am unaccustomed to being so completely contradicted every time I speak. Do you treat every gentleman of your acquaintance in this manner, or do you reserve this behavior solely for princes? As evidenced, Prince Leo becomes apalled that Lady Caroline cannot hold her tongue, conforming to societal norms of the time.
This is the backdrop as both return to London where he and Caroline’s brother, Beckett, become best friends. The prince is returning partially to investigate a human trafficking ring, which he was told about. Unfortunately, as he secretly talks to maids to help them escape, wrong intentions are implied. This is where the mystery begins, how is he to expose those involved in sexual slavery and save the girls? He has no other choice then to turn to Caroline for help who completely goes all in. In addition to working together to free the girls, they realize that they have more in common and a secret budding romance begins.
Caroline’s ability to be the center of every man’s attention allows her to use her assets to find the girls, but also draws Leopold into her charms. She can be selfish, shallow, and self-absorbed, but also vivacious, charming, and self-assured. The Prince feels sorry for himself, being the second son who sees himself as useless and unappreciated. But when approached to help, he acts and shows that he has a backbone.
The story includes tenderness and humor throughout. It involves a love/hate relationship, passion, and characters somewhat at odds with societal norms. The snappy sarcastic dialogue moves the story along allowing readers to laugh, smile, and cry with the characters.
EC: What does the series highlight?
JL: All the princess series has women from different levels of society who get their own prince. I never wrote them as wall flowers. They are their own women who can speak for themselves.
EC: How would you describe the heroine, Caroline?
JL: She wants to be a dress maker. She is beautiful and is not humble about it. I love this about her. She can be aggressive but does wonder if people love her for who she is as a person. She can be self-centered, vain, but also spirited, confident, and sophisticated.
EC: She is direct?
JL: Yes, I wanted her to stand up for herself. It is OK for male characters to be like an alpha, but when it’s the female character it upsets people. Why? She has every right to be as sure of herself as her brother and the prince.
EC: Speaking of making dresses-did she make the dress that is on the book cover?
JL: LOL. We looked at many dresses and got the idea for the book cover form the Met Gala. Blake Lively wore a dress similar to the one on the cover. It is a beautiful dress.
EC: What about the wedding scene?
JL: Based on Grace Kelly and Queen Elizabeth’s weddings. I really wanted to make it authentic.
EC: How would you describe Leo?
JL: I based him on Prince Harry ten years ago. It had been reported he had enjoyed being a partier and was not sure he wanted to be part of the Royal family. I thought how all the attention is given to the Crown Prince. I wanted to have Leo unsure what he would do with his life. In the beginning he is snobbish and a non-conformist, but then redeems himself.
EC: How would you describe their relationship?
JL: Two soulmates who meet. They cannot see it in the first half of the book, but then they recognize they have a lot in common. They play games at first, but eventually decide to work together.
EC: Next books?
JL: The next Princess book, A Princess By Christmas, comes out in the fall. The two countries in this book come to London for a peace summit. The hero is new but the heroine is Eliza’s sister Hollis. As was referenced in this book she wants to move from a gossip columnist to write meaningful articles. Eliza and Sebastian will be back.
A book out in August, You Lucky Dog is about a dog walker that switches two Bassett Hounds.
Every prince has his secrets. And she’s determined to unravel his…
Every dashing young man in London’s ton is vying for Lady Caroline Hawke’s hand—except one. The handsome, delectable, rogue, Prince Leopold of Alucia can’t quite remember who Caroline is and the insult is not to be tolerated. So Caroline does what any clever, resourceful lady of means would do to make sure a prince remembers her: sees that amusingly risqué morsels about Leo’s reputation are printed in a ladies’ gossip gazette…all the while secretly setting her cap for the rakish royal.
Someone has been painting Leo as a blackguard, but who? Socially, it could ruin him. More important, it jeopardises his investigation into a contemptible scheme that reaches the highest levels of government in London. Now Leo needs Lady Caroline’s help to regain access to society. But this charming prince is about to discover that enlisting the deceptively sweet and sexy Lady Caroline might just cost him his heart, his soul and both their reputations…
First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros
I’m also taking part in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros
Every Tuesday Socrates Book Reviews now hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, where readers share the first paragraph of a book that they are reading or plan to read soon.
Looking forward to visiting your blogs and seeing what your Teaser Tuesday and First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, are this week!
Luv Sassy x
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