Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Review: The Royal Bodyguard by Lindsay Emory

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The Royal Bodyguard
Lindsay Emory
Release: Nov. 11, 2019
Goodreads Amazon
ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley
When Princess Caroline of Drieden of the Royal House Laurent eloped with a race car driver, she forfeited her royal title and her family.

Now a widow and exiled from Drieden, Caroline is working as a journalist, writing exposes under a pen name. When, one day, she catches sight of her sister Thea's ex-fiancé, she's stunned - Christian is supposed to be dead. Here could be the scoop of the century.

But Caroline's plans to uncover Christian's deception are foiled by the arrival of Hugh Konnor - her former bodyguard and Caroline's first - unrequited - love. When Hugh stubbornly refuses to leave her side, Caroline can't deny they make a good team.

As they unravel a web of deception that could bring down the House of Laurent, Caroline must decide how far she's willing to go to protect a family she feels deserted her - and whether the man who swore to guard her body can safely hold her heart.

I'm a fan of Princess/Bodyguard romances and The Royal Bodyguard looked to be an interesting twist on the trope since Caroline is no longer a princess and Hugh hasn't been her bodyguard for years. And I did enjoy the chemistry between the two of them. I loved all the action in the story. I also thought Caroline's narration was interesting, her use of things like "/sarcasm font/" giving the sense that you're reading something she wrote herself. All of those things kept me turning the pages long after my bedtime.

But I was confused by the timeline. Caroline's sense of alienation from her family makes it seem like she's been gone much longer than she has. And I was never clear on what exactly Christian had done when he left Thea or how other characters may have connected to his plans. The resolution feels rushed and the big reveals glossed over.

I think some of my confusion is because The Royal Bodyguard is actually the second book in Emory's Runaway Royals series. It's not labeled that way because the previous book was from a different publisher. Had I read Thea's book first I might have had a better understanding of the backstory. I wish more effort had been made to ensure this one would stand alone. In fact, I felt the ending might be setting up Thea's book next before I did some research.

In the end, The Royal Bodyguard is an action movie sort of romance novel - it's a lot of fun as long as you don't think too much about the plot.


Update: I got Thea’s book, The Royal Runaway, from the library about a week after I finished The Royal Bodyguard. It did indeed answer all my questions about Christian and the timing. I still think more effort should have been made to ensure book two would stand on its own.

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