Friday 18 October 2013

Killer Queens by Rebecca Chance

Twenty years ago, fearing for her life, Princess Belinda faked her own death, leaving behind her two children, Prince Hugo and Princess Sophie. Nobody could know that she was still alive, so Belinda has hidden away with her lover, Rahim, watching her children grow from a distance via newspaper reports and articles.

Now grown, Prince Hugo is about to marry. His fiancee Chloe doesn't really fit in with royalty and the upper class but she loves Hugo too much to let him go, despite her future sister-in-law's efforts.

Olympic medallist Lori also doesn't fit in with royalty. After growing up in a small New York State town, she made it into the American volleyball Olympic team. After one of her games, she meets VIP spectator Joachim, the ruling King of Herzoslovakia. Joachim is charmingly old fashioned and sweeps Lori off her feet before proposing to her after a magical whirlwind romance. Lori can't wait to marry Joachim and become queen of the nation that has taken her under its wing, to start a family with her husband and produce beautiful heirs. But Lori soon realises that marrying King Joachim may not be as wonderful as the fairy tales make out.

I'd been looking forward to reading Killer Queens as I loved Rebecca Chance's Killer Heels and Bad Angels last year and I wasn't disappointed. It took me a little while to get into the book as I was introduced to all the characters but I was soon hooked. The book is full of big characters, from straight-talking Lauren (who was my favourite character), to the intimidating Prince Oliver and the wild-child antics of Princess Sophie and her cousin, Toby. I loved the relationship between Chloe and Hugo, which, despite Hugo being third in line to throne, was very down to earth and honest. Chloe has grown up in a secure, loving family and it was nice to see Hugo slotting into their life with such ease. I adored Chloe's parents, who I thought were hilarious, and would have liked to have seen a bit of more of them in the book.

Contrasting with Hugo and Chloe's easy relationship is Lori and Joachim, whose relationship mirrors Belinda and Prince Oliver's troubled marriage much more. Lori finds it difficult to fit into Joachim's life, which is the complete opposite to her own small-town lifestyle and I felt for her as she struggles with the changes.

I thought Killer Queens was a fantastic book, full of wit and Rebecca Chance's usual naughtiness and I was sorry to have to say goodbye to the wonderful characters.

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