Title: My Fair Princess (The Improper Princesses #1)
Author: Vanessa Kelly
Publisher: Zebra Books, Kensington Publishing
Expected Publishing Date: August 30, 2016
Genre: Historical, Romance
Format: eBook, Paperback
Page Count: 352
Rating: 2 Stars
First, Vanessa Kelly brought readers The Renegade Royals. Now, in a delightfully witty new series, she introduces The Improper Princesses—three young women descended from royalty, each bound for her own thrilling adventure . . .
Despite being the illegitimate daughter of a prince, Gillian Dryden is happily ignorant of all social graces. After growing up wild in Italy, Gillian has been ordered home to England to find a suitable husband. And Charles Valentine Penley, the excessively proper, distractingly handsome Duke of Leverton, has agreed to help transform her from a willful tomboy to a blushing debutante.
Powerful and sophisticated, Charles can make or break reputations with a well-placed word. But his new protégée, with her habit of hunting bandits and punching earls, is a walking scandal. The ton is aghast . . . but Charles is thoroughly intrigued. Tasked with taking the hoyden in hand, he longs to take her in his arms instead. Can such an outrageous attraction possibly lead to a fairytale ending?
♦ Personal Thought ♦
This start of new Improper Princesses is a bit of a let down. I liked Gillian Dryden character and Charles Penley was not too bad either. But I thought their chemistry was too abrupt and forced. Granted, it’s what’s expected from this sort of story (that the rapscallion heroine would butt-head yet ended up with her tutor/protector), but the attractions just felt bumpy to me.
Being a beginner to Vanessa Kelly‘s work, I had no clue what to expect and really not familiar with her writing. Overall, the idea and plot themselves – while frequently been hashed before with predictable outcome – were quite enjoyable and somewhat funny, I felt there’s too much loopholes throughout. I mean, the writing itself was fine; but often when the story got to something interesting, the scene jumped into new one and rarely elaborate on what’s just left from before – it was frustrating!
For example, Gillian’s connection with Griffin Steele – who was the main character in Confessions of a Royal Bridegroom, the author’s previous The Renegade Royals series. Personally I didn’t think the mere explanation on early pages that they were half-siblings was engaging enough. For a said to be protective half brother, Griffin certainly didn’t lend enough credibility by what appeared here. His appearance tells there’s tied-in between this series to another of Vanessa Kelly‘s Victorian Romance series; but that’s about it.
It also didn’t portray Charles in a very nice picture that most of the time he was lack of good instinct compared to the heroine; nor the lack of proper grovelling done by him whenever he made colossal dolt of himself over Gillian. I loved strong heroine in a story, but I really prefer to be paired with equally strong hero (being a rich duke was not enough in Charles’s case).
At this point, I’m taking a wait-and-see approach with the future installments of the series and hope my next reading with this author’s books will fare better.
Advanced copy of this book is kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.