A Princess in Theory

Avon. (Reluctant Royals, Bk. 1). Mar. 2018. 360p. ISBN 9780062685544. pap. $7.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062685551. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
OrangeReviewStarThere is no way that savvy public health grad student Naledi Smith is going to fall for an email stating that she is the long-lost fiancée of a prince from some remote African nation. But it's not a scam, and Thabiso, the crown prince of Thesolo, is in dire need of his mate. So when he comes to New York to confront Ledi, and she mistakes him for an ordinary guy (aka Jamal), he seizes the opportunity to get to know her on nonroyal terms—a decision that has a surfeit of unexpected and not always welcome results. Well-drawn, likable protagonists clash beautifully in a story enhanced by old antagonisms, a mysterious epidemic, a jealous villain, and descriptions of a fictitious country so vivid that readers will be tempted to book reservations.
VERDICT Upbeat, sexy, and totally engrossing, this fast-paced modern romp puts an intriguing spin on the classic long-lost-heiress plot and launches the series in style. Cole (A Hope Divided) divides her time between the Caribbean and New York City. [Previewed in Joyce Sparrow's "Love Is All Around," LJ 10/15/17.]

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