American Royals by Katharine McGee Review

A full book review on something not Gossip Girl? I’m surprised too.

So this is American Royals, which might as well be Gossip Girl if they were royalty haha. In case you couldn’t tell I do love a good bit of drama in my books.

This one took me a while to get into though because I was thrown in the deep end with like six characters I didn’t know and new point of view’s every chapter so a girl needed a minute to be like – who is that? Once we got that down things became a lot easier.

So I’m going to break it down for you real quick here before we dive in haha:

  • Beatrice: The first in line for the throne
  • Sam: Beatrice’s younger sister
  • Jeff: Sam’s twin brother
  • Nina: Sam’s best friend who has a crush on Jeff
  • Daphne: Used to date Jeff, wants to be a royal
  • Connor: Beatrice’s security detail but also is in love with her
  • Teddy: Beatrice’s potential husband but has feelings for Sam

Okay so they are the main players, even from my bullet points I feel like you can tell a lot from them haha.

Let’s start with Beatrice, the first in line for the throne. Always prim and proper and does the right thing…until she falls in love with her bodyguard. Well, I saw this coming a mile away with the way the story was written. You just knew Connor was in love with her and it was only a matter of time before she fell too. I ship it.

Sadly though they could never be together, not when Beatrice is up to be Queen. Not only that but the first Queen ever. Because they had a rule that the successor was always meant to be male because you know…that’s always a thing.

Also it’s super weird to read about if America had royalty. Like adjusting to this, me forgetting it’s not set in England and isn’t about the British haha. But it’s good, better to keep it fictional. I also find it fun how I’m reading about American royal drama when currently there’s real British royal drama with Prince Harry and Meghan but like we didn’t come here to talk about that. I just felt the need to say it was a weird coincidence I would read about this when actual royalty is getting so much attention right now.

Anyway yeah so Beatrice is gonna be Queen and it’s going to happen sooner than she thought because the King has stage four cancer. Not good. Plus not only that but she is being pressured into finding a husband because it would make it easier for America to adjust to the idea of a Queen if she had a King. Cue: Teddy.

Teddy is introduced at the ball and he is the only one of Beatrice’s potential suitors that she can really tolerate. They both come from a mutual place of understanding when it comes to what is expected of them making them the perfect couple. At least it would appear that way.

Before Beatrice had met Teddy he had actually run into Sam first and they had a moment together, kissed and everything. So scandalous. Obviously Sam wasn’t too thrilled to find out about Beatrice and Teddy but we will get to that.

Beatrice actually isn’t too thrilled about her relationship with Teddy either as she and her bodyguard Connor have admitted their feelings for one another and are sneaking around. Keeping everything pretty PG though.

Next thing you know, Beatrice has run out of time and has proposed to Teddy. This is obviously not the news Connor expected to hear and so he proposes to Beatrice right after her announcement. I was expecting her to go with her heart and accept Connor’s proposal but she declines! She accepts Connor’s resignation and continues on with her planning of the wedding.

Honestly, props to Beatrice for wanting to serve her country, but at the same time part of me wonders if things begin to fall apart once the actual wedding day arrives…

Moving onto Sam, who is always feeling invisible and like the “spare” child. She is next in line to the throne and she feels like that’s all people see her as. She is jealous of all the attention that is brought down on Beatrice but does not understand the pressure her sister is under.

However, the two do end up having a cute heart to heart moment in the kitchen so I think they’re relationship is on the mend.

Sam is also BFF’s with Nina who she has known since she was little. Nina is not a royal but her mother worked for them so she grew up basically as part of the family. However now that Nina is in uni she tends to keep her relationship with Sam on the DL so no one knows.

This was all working well for Nina until she starts dating Jeff, Sam’s brother. I saw it coming from the way the book is written – it tries to act like there was all this drama going on between Jeff, his ex – Daphne, and Nina but I clocked that Nina totally hooked up with Jeff ASAP – you know I love the drama.

Anyway Nina starts dating Jeff in secret and it is going well until the press finds out about them and everyone starts calling Nina a social-climbing gold-digger. All this comes down on her courtesy of Daphne, Jeff’s ex.

After Nina ignores Jeff for a couple weeks he decides to go and talk to her and they believe they can make it work. For about five minutes. Nina is very insecure about her relationship with Jeff so when Daphne talks to her and explains she will never fit in, well that seems to be the end of her and Jeff.

I was surprised that Nina gave up on Jeff again so quickly but it really annoyed me when he didn’t believe Nina about Daphne being the one to leak photos to the press etc. Then again Jeff is kind of an idiot haha. I feel like he doesn’t want to put effort into his relationship to make it work and maybe being with Daphne would be easier for him…

Speaking of Daphne. I do kind of love her character. She was dating Jeff until he dumped her and now she is doing everything to get him back. She has been working her whole life to become a royal and it is a lot of pressure. I also keep forgetting how young she is because honestly she sounds like she’s 23 but she’s only like 18.

As determined as Daphne is to be an adult, she doesn’t have together all the time. Even though she is trying to get back with Jefferson she can’t deny she may have real feelings for his best friend Ethan.

Ethan can see right through Daphne and her schemes and she really enjoys the fact that there is someone out there that can see the real her. It’s only a matter of time before her facade slips in front of Jefferson and he finds out who she really is. At least I hope so.

Not to mention Daphne is so ruthless that she DRUGGED her own best friend to stop her from spilling the tea about her and Ethan to Jefferson. That is why her friend is in a coma. Like damn. I knew she did something, that was obvious but who knew it was this, I thought she just pushed the girl down the stairs haha.

Can’t wait ’til Himari comes out of that coma girl.

Anyway, everything comes to a head at the big engagement party for Teddy and Beatrice. This is when Beatrice realises that she cannot go through with this engagement and wants to call of the wedding. Hallelujah, she has come to her senses.

Connor finds Beatrice at the engagement party and Beatrice realises that he is the one she should be with. He agrees to come back and work for Beatrice but she knows that could never be enough. So she makes plans to tell her father after the party.

Sadly, when Beatrice tells her father he is not in support of it. Not surprising but at the same time I thought he might have just stood by his daughter anyway. The news comes as such a shock to him that he ends up having a heart attack. Eeek. Though this isn’t the first time someone has used shocking news to bring on a heart attack to someone in a book/movie/TV show.

So the King is rushed to the hospital and everyone in the state has put their own life on hold so they can monitor the King’s. Beatrice and her family are in the hospital and no one knows about Beatrice calling off the engagement. She couldn’t call it off now that the King is in the hospital.

Beatrice manages to have a few last words with her father but he does not get a chance to tell her about what he thinks about Teddy and Connor. Though Beatrice comes to her own conclusions about that, she needs to stay with Teddy in order to be a good Queen. Whatever her and Connor have will be torn apart by the media and the people thinking he is not good enough for her.

Too bad we will never know what he really thought. As the family are outside accepting well-wishes and gifts from the people outside the hospital, they receive news that the King has passed away.

This is when the whole nation turns to bow to Beatrice, their new Queen.

And I am left over here with a bunch of questions. I’m glad there will be a second book but apparently it will not be out until Autumn so I have a lot of waiting to do.

I want to know what Beatrice will decide about Connor and Teddy. I mean I guess it is kind of made clear what will happen. She will go through with her wedding but still see Connor on the side and it’ll probably be a hot mess. Though she could just marry Connor anyway and perhaps give the title up to Samantha?

It would make sense if Samantha became Queen, especially with Teddy on her side. Sure it is going to be super tacky to just take your sister’s place with her fiance and everything but like…it’ll be fine. Though I’m not sure if Sam would really want to be Queen. So we see what happens.

There there is the whole Daphne/Nina/Jeff situation. Nina saw Daphne at the hospital with Jeff and decided it was too much to handle for her so she left without anyone seeing her. I hope that she can either move on from Jeff or find someway to expose Daphne and get her man back.

As for Daphne, well she is on cloud nine and is surprised things are working out so well for her. After waking up to the news about the King, she wasted no time going to the hospital to console Jefferson. If only he knew who she woke up next to…

I imagine the truth will come out about Daphne soon, whether it comes from Himari if she wakes up from her coma, Ethan the angry lover or Nina the jealous ex. The world will find out the tea. Or at least Jeff will.

So that is where I am going to leave it. I definitely did not expect this series to draw me in like it has but now I want to know what happens next. I think Beatrice will make an amazing Queen but I know that there will be issues no matter who stands beside her as her King consort.

Not to mention that whatever she chooses will change Sam’s fate also, if she isn’t with Teddy then Sam can be, but if not then Sam has to watch them be a happy couple to the world…

So yeah, lots of questions and wondering. It’s safe to say I’ll be picking up the sequel whenever I get the chance. In the meantime it is time to venture back to the Upper East Side, I think I only have like four books left to read so let’s get to it, shall we?

~ Courtney x

Only In Your Dreams By Cecily von Ziegesar Review

Summer has just begun for our Upper East Siders and honestly? It’s kind of drab.

I really enjoyed the previous book but this one was lacking.

Let’s begin by saying there was absolutely no Jenny Humphrey in this one which actually made the book feel a bit short. I mean it’s the same length as all the others but with one less character to be updated on it was definitely lacking something.

Plus, don’t we love when Little J just ends up everywhere the cool people are? I can’t wait until we hear about her boarding school adventures, or if we even hear from her at all.

I know in the TV show Jenny was only written off because Taylor Momsen wanted to do music, but what’s the excuse for her being written out of the book?

Next, I guess we can talk about Dan, who once again cannot just have a relationship with Vanessa. He decides to become all hippie and do yoga and go jogging because he met a cute girl in the book store he was working at. I was kind of amazed he was able to keep up his charade for so long. At least he wasn’t writing any poetry…

But yeah so Vanessa gets kicked out of her apartment because her sister comes back and decides she needs all the space for her new boyfriend, so Dan says it’s okay if she moves in with him and she thought that meant they could really be together but of course Dan is over it. Even though he was all about being with Vanessa five seconds ago at graduation. Classic Dan.

So while Dan is off with his blonde, hippie girl, Vanessa is failing as a filmmaker. She was working a job for five minutes and then gets fired. Yikes. But things aren’t always perfect unless your name is Serena, then yes it is perfect. Anyway, she somehow lands a job babysitting which is cute…I guess?

I don’t really know what was going on with Vanessa in this book but she was kind of lame. At least Rufus said she could stay in the apartment because she has nowhere else to go.

As usual, she and Dan end up kind of friends again. Honestly just want one of them to move on for good it’s kind of annoying.

Moving on to our Queen B, she’s not having a fun time in London because Lord Marcus seems to be way more into spending time with his cousin, so she flees back to NYC. But not before buying a wedding dress, because ya know, everyone needs one just in case right?

I wish there was more to the Lord Marcus thing but I guess there isn’t. B just leaves and we never hear from him again. I also kind of enjoyed the whole wedding dress thing and I hope that it doesn’t go to waste.

So now B is back in New York and her mother has to talk to her about her spending because the exchange rate was not as good as Blair thought it was and suggests maybe it is time for her to get a job.

Luckily for Blair, her mother is very close to a designer friend who is working on the movie Breakfast at Fred’s – the remake of Breakfast at Tiffany’s starring SVDW. Fancy.

So now B is working on a movie set and living her best life, plus she decides to move in with Serena for a while as she is living in the apartment building that Aubrey Hepburn lived in, in Breakfast at Tiffany’s so how could she say no? On top of that, we also have a cute neighbour who B seems to like, so like I said she’s living her best life.

Apart from the fact, her younger brother is dating someone who basically wants to be her which is a bit creepy, but she makes it work to her advantage.

Then there’s Serena who is discovering that acting is really hard and she is kind of failing at being an actress. Luckily for her B comes along to save the day and coaches her in all things, Audrey. Of course, she ends up being amazing at it because is it really Serena if she doesn’t magically pull things off?

She also tries to get with her co-star but he ends up being gay, aw well, you can’t win them all.

Over in the Hamptons, we have Nate who is working hard to get his diploma. While he is out there he meets a girl and decides to date her because when you’re as good looking as he is, why not?

In typical Nate fashion though, he realises his one true love is Blair and he doesn’t want to be with some townie and so he leaves her at the wrap party of the movie getting it on with Chuck Bass.

And so that’s where we are left off. Next everyone is headed to the Hamptons and I hope it’s more interesting. I mean, even as I say that I know Dan and Vanessa are going to continue to be on-again-off-again, Blair is going to try and resist Nate and fail and whatever Serena does, well she’ll be amazing at it and have a good time.

But you know I made it this far so let’s keep reading. Things in this book were just kind of dull, I wasn’t really excited by anything apart from Blair deciding to buy a wedding dress but even that didn’t come of anything great. Oh well. There’s still time for that whole Prince of Monaco storyline from the TV show to creep up and I would kind of enjoy that lol.

Anyway, until next time,

You know you love me,

Courtney x

Nothing Can Keep Us Together by Cecily Von Ziegesar Review

You know this series is growing on me. I say as I’m literally eight books in and there aren’t many left haha.

I don’t know what it is but after that one, I seriously disliked they have been getting better? Or at least more interesting.

Maybe because everyone has finally graduated*!

* Except Nate Archibald but we will get to that.

Let’s switch it up and talk about Dan and Vanessa because we never talk about them first – normally for a reason but yeah haha.

So Vanessa was being a bit risque this book, as she decided that being with fun, but not as fun as being with Dan and Aaron at the same time. Though not in a threesome kind of way.

I mean Aaron was kind of laying it on thick with that ring he gave Vanessa that was engraved…not a fan man you only knew her five minutes.

So Vanessa thinks yeah I can have both of them. But that doesn’t last long because Aaron finds out (probably because she and Dan only seemed to have sex on the roof of her building where everyone can see). But surprisingly he was okay about it? Which I was surprised by because I definitely thought he was going to be annoyed at it considering he loved Vanessa so much…

But that kind of seems like how all Vanessa’s relationships go. Like she’s with someone and all of a sudden she’s not and it’s okay? Definitely not how it is in the real world folks.

Anyway yeah, so while she is having this affair with Dan, Dan obviously falls back in love with Vanessa but this time it’s like way more intense than before and Dan is being super annoying but in a worse way because he’s in love.

Dan suddenly thinks he needs to defer from college and spend all his time with Vanessa – even though she’s done nothing to indicate this is what she wants. Dan just kind of decides these things and thinks it’s best for everyone. He even says this during his graduation speech and it’s awful and like…ugh. Dan.

Cut to the end when he comes to his senses and decides to go to uni in the end, which is great for Rufus because he wants his kids to be educated no matter what.

Also, I guess Vanessa is trying to get work on a movie and we see how that goes. As for her and Dan’s relationship, I have no idea what they are and at this point, I don’t care. I’m so sick of their on and off again thing and it’s super weird because they tend not to actually talk and sort of assume things on their own and it just sort of happens. Makes no sense I hope the long distance when Dan goes away means less of that.

Moving onto Little J. She is determined to get into a boarding school but boarding school is not what she expected.

She goes to the open day of the school Serena went to and apparently it became super strict thanks to Serena van der Woodsen so she had to find elsewhere to go.

Luckily she got a place at some art school so we will see where that goes.

But before she got in there, she almost joined a super weird boarding school where Chuck’s cousin goes and also almost did ecstasy? Like wow okay slow down Jenny haha. I’m glad she didn’t actually take the drug and go off the deep end. We don’t need that for her.

That being said, she did keep the drug to give to someone else…our lovable and favourite stoner Nate Archibald!

Oh Nate.

This time instead of being stoned all the time he was just crying. All. The. Time. Like damn boy, who knew you had so many tears?

It was kind of annoying and he was honestly kind of useless in this book lol. All he did was follow Serena around (because they were in a relationship to prove to Blair it was more than a fling) and cry.

But he did decide to steal his lacrosse coach’s viagra so he could get it up for Serena hahaha.

This is why he did not graduate – he has to work for the coach over summer so he can earn his diploma. It’s so silly but at the same time, I think it will be good for him.

He and Serena broke up because she saw him with Jenny and she was relieved and so was he. Their relationship was nothing and I’m glad it’s over.

Serena was kind of just about keeping on Blair’s good side this time around. Which is tough considering no matter what she does B is not a happy bunny.

Though I think she did a good job, despite her going out with Nate. But she got lucky because B found a new man in her life so wasn’t focused on them.

She also got a part in a movie that both she and Blair were up for which is a remake of Breakfast at Tiffany’s but shot in Fred’s a restaurant in Barneys. Which sounds like the worst thing in the world to be honest lol.

Anyway, B wasn’t exactly thrilled about it but I think she’s okay not being a movie star for now.

The one thing I definitely thought Blair was doing to actually throw a fit over was that Serena was not only late to graduation and almost missed it, but the fact they both showed up in the same outfit.

That’s the kind of thing that would never stand on the TV show for B and I definitely thought would not be acceptable in the book but I think she seemed to keep her cool.

I suppose it was graduation and B didn’t wanna make a scene but still I expected more.

As for B herself, well she decided suddenly that she couldn’t live with Vanessa anymore, but they are still kind of friends because she got V a graduation dress and left her some shoes for it which was cute. So now B has moved into the Yale Club.

While at the club she meets a V handsome British version of Nate known as Lord Marcus. And if ya have seen the TV show then you know my interest has piqued because I wonder if it ends up going the same route.

I will say there might be a slim chance of that based on the fact this book was written a good few years before the TV show aired but who knows. I know they probably ramped up the drama for TV so like I doubt Nate gets with his stepmother but I would be open to that being a thing ahahaha.

Aside from being with Lord Marcus, B was also working on her graduation speech and I found it to be so fitting as she explained that if you work hard enough you can get everything you want. And we know that she’s got it all…at least for now.

So that is where we leave everyone, all happy and excited to be graduating and to see what lies ahead when they all go to university. I am excited to see where this goes – but at the same time, I only have a few books left which leads me to wonder where exactly does this tie-up?

At this point no idea, I did think maybe it would end when everyone went to uni but since that might just be around the corner I guess I’ll just have to keep reading to find out.

You know you love me,

~ Courtney x

You’re The One That I Want by Cecily Von Ziegesar Review

Another Gossip Girl novel down, another blog post where I have to double-check I spelt the author’s name right haha.

This one…I kind of didn’t like.

I mean so far the series has just been okay, none of the books have stood out to be better than the others. But I do like reading about the book version of Gossip Girl so I’m sticking with it ’til the end.

But this one I just wasn’t enjoying the storylines.

So here we are FINALLY going to see where everyone is going to uni and it’s kind of unbelievable.

First of all, Serena getting into all the colleges she applied to – lol okay. I mean sure, it goes along with this whole idea that she is perfect and everything just magically works out for her. But it was kind of dull, I’m guessing in the books Serena doesn’t have any kind of growth like she does in the TV show. I’m not saying she grows a lot on the show, but at least there’s some dimension to her character? In the book, she’s very one-note, happy go lucky and her life is perfect. It gets dull after a while.

Not to mention her college visits. Honestly the worst. Of course there’s a guy at every college that she falls in love with, and of course, they all come to New York just to win her over. Like I was rolling my eyes every time we talked about S this time around.

I wonder if she will go to college or decide to do her own thing like on the TV show. I honestly can’t imagine her actually going to Yale or anything, or if she does she will be like “this is too hard” and drop out.

Meanwhile, we have Blair over here who is like so not having a good time because it seems everyone got into Yale except for her, she got wait-listed. I mean to be expected, it also happens on the TV show but there are more dramatic reasons as to why on the TV show. Still, even though she got wait-listed, she was surprisingly calm in this book, which seemed unnatural for her.

I was not expecting Blair to be so welcoming to her new baby sister either. But there we go.

On the bright side, she finally lost her virginity to Nate! Woo! Nothing else to report though.

Then there was Nate who actually decided to just be a jerk to the Brown rep to get her off his back and he was gonna throw off Yale too but then decided against it. Wild. Also unnatural to see Nate act like a jerk but he did it.

Not sure what more I am expecting from stoner Nate tbh. He’s kind of just there doing his own thing, occasionally thinking about Blair. I wonder if college is going to be good for him.

Moving on down to Brooklyn. Ugh.

Dan was annoying and Vanessa was even worse. I mean I think it’s clear I don’t like them at all in the books but this time they were more insufferable than usual.

So Dan gets into all his colleges too, he isn’t poor in the books so he doesn’t need financial aid or anything so he can totally go anywhere he wants. But he decides it’s a good idea to try and move in with Vanessa while her sister is on tour. That lasts about five minutes because this other girl shows up and says Vanessa’s sister said she could crash.

So Vanessa becomes a completely different person because she really likes this girl who is staying with them and Dan hates it. So he’s being moodier than ever, meanwhile, Vanessa is just being straight up the worst pretending to be like this new girl.

It’s safe to say all this doesn’t last long as Vanessa’s sister calls to say this girl is actually crazy and Vanessa should kick her out. Vanessa goes back to herself, Dan kind of just moves out without saying much and I guess once more they are broken up? I never know.

And then finally, Jenny decides to become a model and it backfires when she is featured in this article about breast size. So once again her breasts are a part of her storyline. Eh. It kind of works out for her though because she ends up doing another photo shoot with Serena and I guess they had fun. No idea what it was for but I’m sure w will find out soon.

But yeah, overall kind of a meh one. Nothing overly interesting happened and everyone annoyed me in some way or another lol. I can’t tell if it’s because I’ve been super emotional lately or what but this just wasn’t the one for me. Anyway, I’m off to read what happens next and see if everyone finally decides on a college. Plus, we gotta see if Blair makes it off the wait-list, and with it being B, you know she’ll find a way.

~ Courtney x