Royal Scandal is the first book in the new Royals in Exile series from Marquita Valentine. This wasn't my favorite book that I have read from her, but it wasn't my least favorite either. I did enjoy this one and I like the premise behind this series. There were a few things that kept me from really loving this book though, and it ended up just being okay instead of great like I think it could have been. This wasn't exactly what I had gone in expecting, but I do think a lot of readers will enjoy this book.
After the assassination of his parents, Crown Prince Colin Sinclair is forced to take his siblings and flee to the United States. There they spend years hiding and living their lives as they try to move forward. Colin meets Della Hughs, and she helps him with his siblings. They become best friends and neither can imagine their lives without each other. But when the truth comes out and Parliament tries to force Colin's hand, he proposes that Della should become his fake wife so that he doesn't have to marry someone they choose. But soon fake starts to become real and both begin to think about the forever that they have each wanted but never dared to mention.
I liked Della and Colin for each other. I thought that they were perfect for one another and great together. I did have a bit of an issue with Colin, but I can somewhat see it from his side as well. For as much as he said that he loved and trusted Della, he didn't tell her who he was and that bothered me. I felt like if he truly loved and trusted her that he would have said something. I did love that he hadn't been with other women though, and he knew that Della was the one for him. It was refreshing to see a guy so committed to the girl he wanted that he wouldn't be out taking advantage of how single he was despite his feelings. I will say though that while these two had smoking hot chemistry, things progressed way too fast for my taste. It was as if a switch had been flipped and suddenly they went from friends to sex with no in between. I wanted to see more of a natural progression and felt like we really missed that here.
So while I did like the characters and the premise, it was hard to get past some of this. I also felt like while the premise was good, it was unrealistic to believe that the entire family could remain hidden as they did for as long as they did. It just wasn't believable, though if that had been my only criticism I would have been able to easily forget it. I do think that this series is one that could be really good, but I had higher hopes for this first book and unfortunately it just didn't quite live up to them. If it sounds like something you would enjoy though, I recommend giving it a shot. There were things that I liked here, and it was enjoyable.
**ARC Provided by Publisher**