Royal by Winter Renshaw
Series: Rixton Falls #1
Publisher: self-published
Publication Date: February 21, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Pages: 394
Format: kindle book
Source: purchased

His name is Royal, but he’s no prince charming. He’s not even a prince – though you could say I loved him once upon a time.

He was my older brother’s best friend.

Growing up, he sat at our dinner table every Sunday, teased me mercilessly, and pretended I annoyed him.

When I was old enough, he took me on my first date.

Royal taught me how to drive. Escorted me to my junior prom. Gave me my first kiss…amongst other things. He was my first taste of toe-curling, all-consuming, can’t-sleep love.

We had our whole lives ahead of us. There was never anyone else for me but him.

And then he disappeared. No letter. No explanation. Not even a goodbye.

My sisters and brother never forgave him, and my parents forbade me from speaking his name in our house ever again. For all intents and purposes, we were to pretend Royal Lockhart never existed.

I’ve spent the last seven years trying in vain to forget my first love, but just when I think I’ve finally moved on, guess who’s back in town?

4 Royal stars

LOOK. AT. THAT. COVER. Yep, that’s what made me buy the book. Judge me, I don’t mind because I certainly judged this book by its cover and have never been more proud.

The story started off as Demi’s life began to unravel. Without even realizing it I was caught up in her life and the mess that it was. The pages were a mix between present day and flashbacks to the past to give us backstory. I found myself invested in her love for Royal from the get-go. The flashbacks were short and gave us the perfect amount of feels to understand how deep and true Royal and Demi’s love was. There was never information overload, even with all the characters we met. The pacing was spot on and drew me in.

Royal came back seven years after he vanished from Demi’s life, and while the attraction was still there, (and OMG WAS IT STILL THERE) there was hurt and mistrust that had to be healed. In order for that to happen secrets had to be revealed and that wasn’t easy. We were given snippets of information bit by bit, but it was the way they interacted that showed how undeniable their chemistry was even after all those years.

Oh Royal how I love you. He had such a naughty mind, and the way he adored and lusted over Demi was seriously swoon worthy. He was quietly all man, and kept his head down while all the while going for what he wanted. He was delicious.

Demi, oh I loved her too. I especially loved when she embraced her “who gives a f*ck” attitude. However, sometimes she was more complacent and did things for appearances and those times made me frustrated. Luckily she was strong and that’s the side we saw most of the time. I enjoyed the process of watching her realize that she did belong with Royal and she really would find happiness.

The romance was such a great blend of attraction and chemistry. Neither ever went away, and the love between the two was always there. However, the years Royal was gone took it’s toll on them. It’s not like they could pick up where they left off. Their honesty about how they felt was soooooooo good, so refreshing and so very swoony. It was definitely complicated even though their love was true and simple. The way the author pulled it off so effortlessly was fantastic.

I wasn’t as crazy about the predictability…the debt, pinning affairs on people, Pandora and the secret Royal had. If I sensed all those things, I didn’t know why the characters didn’t sense them too and do something to prevent them. And back to Pandora…she was just a little too “text book” sleazy side-woman. I know I wasn’t supposed to like her, but she didn’t feel real to me, I think she was just a little too over the top. She didn’t take away from the book, but if she had been written with just a bit more subtly I think she would have worked better for me.

I did love the secondary characters, which happened to be Demi’s family. I feel like the next books will be about them, and I can’t wait to read more of Ms. Renshaw’s words, I am a huge fan!

The ending was just right. Long enough for me to feel like I got to embrace and roll around in the goodness of Royal and Demi’s HEA. I got closure and then some. I am so happy for them!

Rec it? Yes! A great second chance romance that still felt so fresh and new. If you love a good swoon this is a great addition for your TBR!

Happy reading!

Book Rating Breakdown
General Book Feels
Dirty Talk Ability
Brooding level of the hero

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