Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:
Synopsis for Paper Princess (from Goodreads):
From strip clubs and truck stops to southern coast mansions and prep schools, one girl tries to stay true to herself.
These Royals will ruin you…
Ella Harper is a survivor—a pragmatic optimist. She’s spent her whole life moving from town to town with her flighty mother, struggling to make ends meet and believing that someday she’ll climb out of the gutter. After her mother’s death, Ella is truly alone.
Until Callum Royal appears, plucking Ella out of poverty and tossing her into his posh mansion among his five sons who all hate her. Each Royal boy is more magnetic than the last, but none as captivating as Reed Royal, the boy who is determined to send her back to the slums she came from.
Reed doesn’t want her. He says she doesn’t belong with the Royals.
He might be right.
Wealth. Excess. Deception. It’s like nothing Ella has ever experienced, and if she’s going to survive her time in the Royal palace, she’ll need to learn to issue her own Royal decrees.
There is a novella: #3.5 Tarnished Crown
Book Order: Chronological (#1-3) and Connected Sequels (#4-5)
Genre: Young Adult / New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama
Heat Rating: Warm **spicy YA**
Point of View: First Person, Single; First Person, Alternating (#2 onwards)
Publication Dates: April 2016 – March 2018
Source & Format: Own–eBook (Kobo)
Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:
I had Paper Princess on my radar for a long time but the potential soapy-ness of it all scared me a little. But after I read (and adored) Erin Watt’s When It’s Real, I immediately made plans to bump this up on my TBR. And once I discovered that this was an author duo whose individuals works I’ve enjoyed in the past, it seemed like a no-brainer to pick it up. That’s why it was a 2019 5 Year 5 Book Reading Challenge pick for the year 2016.
The Concept / Genre Classification:
While this does take place in high school (which I classify as YA), it definitely has more New Adult undertones to it; especially when it comes to the sexual content.
The first 3 books focus on Reed and Ella but the 4th and 5th books focus on Easton. However, they all follow a chronological order of events so it is best to read them in the order they are listed as on Goodreads.
These books definitely read like your favourite teenage soap opera drama. You’ve got mean girls; hook-ups; backstabbing; angst; sexual tension and secrets–and not just from the teenagers, the parents are just as bad 😉
But that makes for an addicting read in many ways. Yes, some of the moments were a little too overdramatic for my tastes (the antics that Ella finds herself in especially) but it worked within the context of the story. Or at least I thought that was the case with the first three books; not so much with the last two novels.
I think some people would classify it as a “guilty pleasure” read if they don’t read many contemporaries novels.
Ella is a fighter and I appreciated her blunt honesty at times; she’s not ashamed of herself or her past and that was refreshing. At times, she is perhaps a little melodramatic but I understood her actions.
As for the Royals, they are all as captivating and intriguing as you want them to be. Each brother is unique and has their own air of mystery around them. It was fun to watch their antics as well as see that deeper side to their characters.
In Paper Princess (#1), I wasn’t totally sold on the romance between Ella and Reed. I could definitely feel the lust but I thought the “deeper” connection they kept feeling wasn’t really elaborated on. That changed in Broken Prince (#2) though; it became more apparent to me why they were drawn together and how great they could be together.
However, that wasn’t the case with Easton’s two novels. I was really disappointed in the romance there. I just didn’t see it at all.
My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:
There are no further books planned featuring the brothers–BUT, I wouldn’t be opposed to the twins getting their own novel(s) one day 😉
Series Rating: 4/5
Paper Princess 4/5 | Broken Prince 4/5 | Twisted Palace 3/5 | [Tarnished Crown 4/5] | Fallen Heir 3/5 | Cracked Kingdom 3/5
If you love drama and teenaged angst in your reads, this is the series for you!
Read if You Like: angst, drama, older YA reads
Avoid if You: dislike contemporaries
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