Even though I disappeared last month, I hope some of you still read June's book and are ready to talk about it! The Royal We, by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan has been on my to-read list for months, so I was pretty happy it was the book of choice this time around. If this is your first book club with us, then just a heads up that spoilers are fair game since this is a discussion (and not just a review). At the end of the post, I will have a few questions to get the discussion rolling, but you by no means have to answer them. If you have a blog post in which you reviewed or discussed The Royal We, there is a link up for you!
Also, there's a poll at the end of this post, so make sure you vote for next month's book! If you're new to A Slice of Brie Book club, in a nutshell, it's an online book club for fellow book lovers. A place to talk about a chosen book from the comfort of your own home/computer! Everyone is welcome (so tell your friends!), and you definitely do not have to have a blog to participate. Every month, we vote on which book to read for the following month. The poll will stay open until Monday night and I will announce the book next Wednesday. No commitment to join, but if you've ever wanted to join a book club, this is a great place to start!
Ok! So on to The Royal We! You guys, I adored this book. Absolutely, 100% adored it. I'm not going to go into too much detail about what it's about, but in short, it's basically a fictional re-telling of the love story between Prince William and Kate, except in this case, their names are Prince Nicolas and Rebecca (Bex). The book spans over a decade, starting with how they met (Bex is an American and decides to take a semester abroad at Oxford, and Nick resides in her dorm), to all the in-between ups and downs of their courtship and relationship, and ending (and beginning) with the eve before their big wedding. Bex, with no doubt in her mind that she is madly, truly and deeply in love with Nick, can't help but wonder if everything she is giving up to be with him (her privacy, her normalcy, her job, her citizenship), is well, worth it.
I'm not sure if I loved this book as much as I did because I have a serious crush on the real-life Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, but this book fulfilled that obsession I have with them. While the facts and events in this book are so different from things that actually happened during the dating years of Prince William and Kate, the similarities were enough that I couldn't help but picture them while reading. It was so exciting to be pulled into their world - a world I can't even imagine getting a glimpse of, let alone being a part of. The characters, while not without their faults, were all fantastic and everyone was so well developed. I truly felt transported into the pages of the story while reading it.
Of course, I also find the life of the Royals utterly fascinating and I enjoyed that look into what their life is most likely like to some degree. I especially enjoyed reading about all the work and effort that went into grooming Bex to become the wife of a Prince. I've always wondered how many people are truly behind the scenes in Kate's life and just how much "help" she has. Wouldn't it be wonderful if she had a blog (were she allowed to!)!? Or her own Instagram account? And by that I mean, an account where she posts the photos and gives us glimpses into her everyday life.
But more than that, I just enjoyed this story. Even if there was no Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in which this novel got it's inspiration from, I still would have loved it. The love story had me in tears at times, and even the side relationships felt real and I was just as invested in all of them. I liked that things were often messy in their life and relationship and that their love spanned years, not just days and months. So much growing up was down in this book, and I feel like that's so rare in contemporary romance.
QUESTIONS FOR YOU! (Feel free to discuss in the comments!)
1. Would you be able to give up large parts of your life to marry into an establishment like the Royal Family? Is love enough? Well, let's be honest here, I'd love to be in Kate's shoes - I mean, I'm pretty sure we've all fantasized about what it would be like to marry a prince, haven't we?! I don't believe love on it's own is enough, but I truly felt convinced that what Bex and Prince Nick shared (love, friendship, honesty, compassion and loyalty) would get them through the toughest of days. So yes, in a similar situation, I like to believe I could marry into such an establishment given the right circumstance.
2. What did you think about Bex's twin sister, Lacey? Do you think her reactions and how she handled herself in regards to her sister dating and marrying a Prince were justified? I had moments where I loved Lacey and moments where I wanted to shake some sense into her. I was horrified when she dropped out of medical school just to be a part of her sister's lifestyle. BUT, I also think it would be really tough to be the twin-sister of someone dating an actual Prince. It would be weird and I admit, I'm sure I would have major moments of jealously. I think Lacey made some very poor mistakes, but I think she needed to find herself and figure out a way to be more than just Bex's twin sister.
3. Would you have given up your citizenship just because the Queen basically told you to? Do you think your citizenship is important enough to fight for, or is it a compromise that you would be able to make? This is the one thing that bothered me about the book. Not the fact that Bex decided to go ahead and sign the papers to give-up her American citizenship, but once she signed those papers, even though Prince Nick told her not to, it was never brought up again! I like to think, if I was in her shoes, my Canadian citizenship would have been more acceptable to the Queen, haha!
NEXT MONTH'S BOOK PICK
Here are the choices for July's book club pick. Feel free to vote, even if you aren't sure you can participate. Really, you can read the book at any time before we meet to discuss it, so you don't have to decide now if you will have time to read it or not! I will announce the winner next week and you'll have 4-5 weeks to read the book.
*Local friends: the first two have copies available at the library, but the last one has a waiting list.
And now to vote!
Happy voting! Don't forget to link up your posts so that I can check them out!