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Book Review: Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Image via Goodreads

Genre: LGBTQIA+ Adult Contemporary Romance
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Recommend to Others?: Yes
Favorite Quote: “But the truth is, also, simply this: love is indomitable.”

ABOUT: First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

 

***As in my last review, this is another long one so feel free to just read the bold text. Thank you for reading!***

My ReviewI loved loved a million times loved Red, White & Royal Blue! Why did it take me so long to read this book? This romantic story had me laughing and tearing up and feeling way too many feels. I am beyond amazed. It was *chef’s kiss* magnificent.

Alex and Henry are my new favorite couple. They are so cute together and utterly perfect for each other. They have such great (seamless) chemistry. I loved their hilarious banters in their emails and how they expressed their feelings for each other through quotes by (I think) queer figures (or at least seemingly) throughout history. Their passion and desire for one another was a raging inferno at times but super sweet. I loved how relaxed and open they could be while together. Alas, this dynamic duo’s relationship is fraught with tension, insecurity, and anxiety at being found out.

Every single character is lovable. All the young adults – Alex, June, Nor, Henry, and Pez – are basically talented geniuses. One I believe is an overpowered magical being who’s good at everything. I loved that Alex, June and Nor’s close relationship was dubbed by the people as the “White House Trio.”

President Ellen Claremont was the most inspiring to me and I loved her backstory of how she got into politics while still maintaining her integrity. She is strong, fearless, and quirky when not in president mode. She is just a great character. But no more PowerPoints (oh my goodness haha!!!). Also, she has the most fearsome and wickedly wonderful right-hand woman in Zahra who also provided a lot of comic relief.

You can’t talk about this book without talking about politics because it’s a big part of the story but I’ll try to be brief. Red, White & Royal Blue was an eerie parallel to reality at times. Looking at just the US, the book takes place during the US 2020 election year. The country is led by its first female president, Ellen Claremont, aka Alex’s mom. It’s an incredibly important year with (different but important) high stakes. In my opinion, this book is a more positive version of what could have been after the 2016 elections though still having its share of political corruption and social issues. And now in 2020, in the most crucial election in US history, imperative choices and changes need to be made for the betterment of the American people and the world.

I became a nervous wreck about Alex and Henry’s relationship because I worried a certain thing would happen to ruin things. And when it did it was as devastating as I feared. I owe those feelings to the brilliantly dispersed tension throughout the book.

There is so much to love about Red, White & Royal Blue. It’s an incredible story with awesome queer rep and diversity. Post-read, I’m feeling a little more hopeful for the future. McQuiston is a talented storyteller and writer. I’m so thankful she wrote this book. I hope more people get to read and fall madly in love with this story and its characters. Red, White & Royal Blue is a must read!

2 replies on “Book Review: Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston”

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