THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER that is a *MUST-READ BOOK* for US WEEKLY, VOGUE, NPR, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, OPRAHMAG.COM, and more!
What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?
When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, geniushis image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when the tabloids get hold of a photo involving an Alex-Henry altercation, U.S./British relations take a turn for the worse.
Heads of family, state, and other handlers devise a plan for damage control: staging a truce between the two rivals. What at first begins as a fake, Instragramable friendship grows deeper, and more dangerous, than either Alex or Henry could have imagined. Soon Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret romance with a surprisingly unstuffy Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations and begs the question: Can love save the world after all? Where do we find the courage, and the power, to be the people we are meant to be? And how can we learn to let our true colors shine through? Casey McQuiston's Red, White & Royal Blue proves: true love isn't always diplomatic.
"I took this with me wherever I went and stole every second I had to read! Absorbing, hilarious, tender, sexythis book had everything I crave. I’m jealous of all the readers out there who still get to experience Red, White & Royal Blue for the first time!" - Christina Lauren, New York Times bestselling author of The Unhoneymooners
"Red, White & Royal Blue is outrageously fun. It is romantic, sexy, witty, and thrilling. I loved every second." - Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones & The Six
|Publisher:||St. Martin's Press|
|Product dimensions:||5.30(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.30(d)|
About the Author
Casey McQuiston grew up in the swamps of Southern Louisiana, where she cultivated an abiding love for honey butter biscuits and stories with big, beating hearts. She studied journalism and worked in magazine publishing for years before returning to her first love: joyous, offbeat romantic comedies and escapist fiction. She now lives in the mountains of Fort Collins, Colorado, with a collection of caftans and her poodle mix, Pepper. Red, White & Royal Blue is her first novel.
Read an Excerpt
On the White House roof, tucked into a corner of the Promenade, there's a bit of loose paneling right on the edge of the Solarium. If you tap it just right, you can peel it back enough to find a message etched underneath, with the tip of a key or maybe a stolen West Wing letter opener.
In the secret history of First Families — an insular gossip mill sworn to absolute discretion about most things on pain of death — there's no definite answer for who wrote it. The one thing people seem certain of is that only a presidential son or daughter would have been daring enough to deface the White House. Some swear it was Jack Ford, with his Hendrix records and split-level room attached to the roof for late-night smoke breaks. Others say it was a young Luci Johnson, thick ribbon in her hair. But it doesn't matter. The writing stays, a private mantra for those resourceful enough to find it.
Alex discovered it within his first week of living there. He's never told anyone how.
RULE #1: DON'T GET CAUGHT
The East and West Bedrooms on theb second floor are generally reserved for the First Family. They were first designated as one giant state bedroom for visits from the Marquis de Lafayette in the Monroe administration, but eventually they were split. Alex has the East, across from the Treaty Room, and June uses the West, next to the elevator.
Growing up in Texas, their rooms were arranged in the same configuration, on either side of the hallway. Back then, you could tell June's ambition of the month by what covered the walls. At twelve, it was watercolor paintings. At fifteen, lunar calendars and charts of crystals. At sixteen, clippings from The Atlantic, a UT Austin pennant, Gloria Steinem, Zora Neale Hurston, and excerpts from the papers of Dolores Huerta.
His own room was forever the same, just steadily more stuffed with lacrosse trophies and piles of AP coursework. It's all gathering dust in the house they still keep back home. On a chain around his neck, always hidden from view, he's worn the key to that house since the day he left for DC.
Now, straight across the hall, June's room is all bright white and soft pink and minty green, photographed by Vogue and famously inspired by old '60s interior design periodicals she found in one of the White House sitting rooms. His own room was once Caroline Kennedy's nursery and, later, warranting some sage burning from June, Nancy Reagan's office. He's left up the nature field illustrations in a neat symmetrical grid above the sofa, but painted over Sasha Obama's pink walls with a deep blue.
Typically, the children of the president, at least for the past few decades, haven't lived in the Residence beyond eighteen, but Alex started at Georgetown the January his mom was sworn in, and logistically, it made sense not to split their security or costs to whatever one-bedroom apartment he'd be living in. June came that fall, fresh out of UT. She's never said it, but Alex knows she moved in to keep an eye on him. She knows better than anyone else how much he gets off on being this close to the action, and she's bodily yanked him out of the West Wing on more than one occasion.
Behind his bedroom door, he can sit and put Hall & Oates on the record player in the corner, and nobody hears him humming along like his dad to "Rich Girl." He can wear the reading glasses he always insists he doesn't need. He can make as many meticulous study guides with color-coded sticky notes as he wants. He's not going to be the youngest elected congressman in modern history without earning it, but nobody needs to know how hard he's kicking underwater. His sex-symbol stock would plummet.
"Hey," says a voice at the door, and he looks up from his laptop to see June edging into his room, two iPhones and a stack of magazines tucked under one arm, and a plate in her hand. She closes the door behind her with her foot.
"What'd you steal today?" Alex asks, pushing the pile of papers on his bed out of her way.
"Assorted donuts," June says as she climbs up. She's wearing a pencil skirt with pointy pink flats, and he can already see next week's fashion columns: a picture of her outfit today, a lead-in for some sponcon about flats for the professional gal on the go.
He wonders what she's been up to all day. She mentioned a column for WaPo, or was it a photoshoot for her blog? Or both? He can never keep up.
She's dumped her stack of magazines out on the bedspread and is already busying herself with them.
"Doing your part to keep the great American gossip industry alive?"
"That's what my journalism degree's for," June says.
"Anything good this week?" Alex asks, reaching for a donut.
"Let's see," June says. "In Touch says I'm ... dating a French model?"
"I wish." She flips a few pages. "Ooh, and they're saying you got your asshole bleached."
"That one is true," Alex says through a mouthful of chocolate with sprinkles.
"Thought so," June says without looking up. After riffling through most of the magazine, she shuffles it to the bottom of the stack and moves on to People. She flips through absently — People only ever writes what their publicists tell it to write. Boring. "Not much on us this week ... oh, I'm a crossword puzzle clue."
Following their tabloid coverage is something of an idle hobby of hers, one that in turns amuses and annoys their mother, and Alex is narcissistic enough to let June read him the highlights. They're usually either complete fabrications or lines fed from their press team, but sometimes it's just funny. Given the choice, he'd rather read one of the hundreds of glowing pieces of fan fiction about him on the internet, the up-to-eleven version of himself with devastating charm and unbelievable physical stamina, but June flat-out refuses to read those aloud to him, no matter how much he tries to bribe her.
"Do Us Weekly," Alex says.
"Hmm ..." June digs it out of the stack. "Oh, look, we made the cover this week."
She flashes the glossy cover at him, which has a photo of the two of them inlaid in one corner, June's hair pinned on top of her head and Alex looking slightly over-served but still handsome, all jawline and dark curls. Below it in bold yellow letters, the headline reads: FIRST SIBLINGS' WILD NYC NIGHT.
"Oh yeah, that was a wild night," Alex says, reclining back against the tall leather headboard and pushing his glasses up his nose. "Two whole keynote speakers. Nothing sexier than shrimp cocktails and an hour and a half of speeches on carbon emissions."
"It says here you had some kind of tryst with a 'mystery brunette,'" June reads. "'Though the First Daughter was whisked off by limousine to a star-studded party shortly after the gala, twenty-one-year-old heartthrob Alex was snapped sneaking into the W Hotel to meet a mystery brunette in the presidential suite and leaving around four a.m. Sources inside the hotel reported hearing amorous noises from the room all night, and rumors are swirling the brunette was none other than ... Nora Holleran, the twenty-two-year-old granddaughter of Vice President Mike Holleran and third member of the White House Trio. Could it be the two are rekindling their romance?'"
"Yes!" Alex crows, and June groans. "That's less than a month! You owe me fifty dollars, baby."
"Hold on. Was it Nora?"
Alex thinks back to the week before, showing up at Nora's room with a bottle of champagne. Their thing on the campaign trail a million years ago was brief, mostly to get the inevitable over with. They were seventeen and eighteen and doomed from the start, both convinced they were the smartest person in any room. Alex has since conceded Nora is 100 percent smarter than him and definitely too smart to have ever dated him.
It's not his fault the press won't let it go, though; that they love the idea of them together as if they're modern-day Kennedys. So, if he and Nora occasionally get drunk in hotel rooms together watching The West Wing and making loud moaning noises at the wall for the benefit of nosy tabloids, he can't be blamed, really. They're simply turning an undesirable situation into their own personal entertainment.
Scamming his sister is also a perk.
"Maybe," he says, dragging out the vowels.
June swats him with the magazine like he's an especially obnoxious cockroach. "That's cheating, you dick!"
"Bet's a bet," Alex tells her. "We said if there was a new rumor in a month, you'd owe me fifty bucks. I take Venmo."
"I'm not paying," June huffs. "I'm gonna kill her when we see her tomorrow. What are you wearing, by the way?"
"Uh, the royal wedding," June says. "Of England. It's literally on every cover I just showed you."
She holds Us Weekly up again, and this time Alex notices the main story in giant letters: PRINCE PHILIP SAYS I DO! Along with a photograph of an extremely nondescript British heir and his equally nondescript blond fiancée smiling blandly.
He drops his donut in a show of devastation. "That's this weekend?"
"Alex, we leave in the morning," June tells him. "We've got two appearances before we even go to the ceremony. I can't believe Zahra hasn't climbed up your ass about this already."
"Shit," he groans. "I know I had that written down. I got sidetracked."
"What, by conspiring with my best friend against me in the tabloids for fifty dollars?"
"No, with my research paper, smart-ass," Alex says, gesturing dramatically at his piles of notes. "I've been working on it for Roman Political Thought all week. And I thought we agreed Nora is our best friend."
"That can't possibly be a real class you're taking," June says. "Is it possible you willfully forgot about the biggest international event of the year because you don't want to see your archnemesis?"
"June, I'm the son of the President of the United States. Prince Henry is a figurehead of the British Empire. You can't just call him my 'archnemesis,'" Alex says. He returns to his donut, chewing thoughtfully, and adds, "'Archnemesis' implies he's actually a rival to me on any level and not, you know, a stuck-up product of inbreeding who probably jerks off to photos of himself."
"I'm just saying."
"Well, you don't have to like him, you just have to put on a happy face and not cause an international incident at his brother's wedding."
"Bug, when do I ever not put on a happy face?" Alex says. He pulls a painfully fake grin, and June looks satisfyingly repulsed.
"Ugh. Anyway, you know what you're wearing, right?"
"Yeah, I picked it out and had Zahra approve it last month. I'm not an animal."
"I'm still not sure about my dress," June says. She leans over and steals his laptop away from him, ignoring his noise of protest. "Do you think the maroon or the one with the lace?"
"Lace, obviously. It's England. And why are you trying to make me fail this class?" he says, reaching for his laptop only to have his hand swatted away. "Go curate your Instagram or something. You're the worst."
"Shut up, I'm trying to pick something to watch. Ew, you have Garden State on your watch list? Wow, how's film school in 2005 going?"
"I hate you."
"Hmm, I know."
Outside his window, the wind stirs up over the lawn, rustling the linden trees down in the garden. The record on the turntable in the corner has spun out into fuzzy silence. He rolls off the bed and flips it, resetting the needle, and the second side picks up on "London Luck, & Love."
* * *
If he's honest, private aviation doesn't really get old, not even three years into his mother's term.
He doesn't get to travel this way a lot, but when he does, it's hard not to let it go to his head. He was born in the hill country of Texas to the daughter of a single mother and the son of Mexican immigrants, all of them dirt poor — luxury travel is still a luxury.
Fifteen years ago, when his mother first ran for the House, the Austin newspaper gave her a nickname: the Lometa Longshot. She'd escaped her tiny hometown in the shadow of Fort Hood, pulled night shifts at diners to put herself through law school, and was arguing discrimination cases before the Supreme Court by thirty. She was the last thing anybody expected to rise up out of Texas in the midst of the Iraq War: a strawberry-blond, whip-smart Democrat with high heels, an unapologetic drawl, and a little biracial family.
So, it's still surreal that Alex is cruising somewhere over the Atlantic, snacking on pistachios in a high-backed leather chair with his feet up. Nora is bent over the New York Times crossword opposite him, brown curls falling across her forehead. Beside her, the hulking Secret Service agent Cassius — Cash for short — holds his own copy in one giant hand, racing to finish it first. The cursor on Alex's Roman Political Thought paper blinks expectantly at him from his laptop, but something in him can't quite focus on school while they're flying transatlantic.
Amy, his mother's favorite Secret Service agent, a former Navy SEAL who is rumored around DC to have killed several men, sits across the aisle. She's got a bulletproof titanium case of crafting supplies open on the couch next to her and is serenely embroidering flowers onto a napkin. Alex has seen her stab someone in the kneecap with a very similar embroidery needle.
Which leaves June, next to him, leaning on one elbow with her nose buried in the issue of People she's inexplicably brought with them. She always chooses the most bizarre reading material for flights. Last time, it was a battered old Cantonese phrase book. Before that, Death Comes for the Archbishop.
"What are you reading in there now?" Alex asks her.
She flips the magazine around so he can see the double-page spread titled: ROYAL WEDDING MADNESS! Alex groans. This is definitely worse than Willa Cather.
"What?" she says. "I want to be prepared for my first-ever royal wedding."
"You went to prom, didn't you?" Alex says. "Just picture that, only in hell, and you have to be really nice about it."
"Can you believe they spent $75,000 just on the cake?"
"And apparently Prince Henry is going sans date to the wedding and everyone is freaking out about it. It says he was," she affects a comical English accent, "'rumored to be dating a Belgian heiress last month, but now followers of the prince's dating life aren't sure what to think.'"
Alex snorts. It's insane to him that there are legions of people who follow the intensely dull dating lives of the royal siblings. He understands why people care where he puts his own tongue — at least he has personality.
"Maybe the female population of Europe finally realized he's as compelling as a wet ball of yarn," Alex suggests.
Nora puts down her crossword puzzle, having finished it first. Cassius glances over and swears. "You gonna ask him to dance, then?"
Alex rolls his eyes, suddenly imagining twirling around a ballroom while Henry drones sweet nothings about croquet and fox hunting in his ear. The thought makes him want to gag.
"In his dreams."
"Aw," Nora says, "you're blushing."
"Listen," Alex tells her, "royal weddings are trash, the princes who have royal weddings are trash, the imperialism that allows princes to exist at all is trash. It's trash turtles all the way down."
"Is this your TED Talk?" June asks. "You do realize America is a genocidal empire too, right?"
"Yes, June, but at least we have the decency not to keep a monarchy around," Alex says, throwing a pistachio at her.
There are a few things about Alex and June that new White House hires are briefed on before they start. June's peanut allergy. Alex's frequent middle-of-the-night requests for coffee. June's college boyfriend, who broke up with her when he moved to California but is still the only person whose letters come to her directly. Alex's long-standing grudge against the youngest prince.
It's not a grudge, really. It's not even a rivalry. It's a prickling, unsettling annoyance. It makes his palms sweat.
The tabloids — the world — decided to cast Alex as the American equivalent of Prince Henry from day one, since the White House Trio is the closest thing America has to royalty. It has never seemed fair. Alex's image is all charisma and genius and smirking wit, thoughtful interviews and the cover of GQ at eighteen; Henry's is placid smiles and gentle chivalry and generic charity appearances, a perfectly blank Prince Charming canvas. Henry's role, Alex thinks, is much easier to play.
Maybe it is technically a rivalry. Whatever.
"All right, MIT," he says, "what are the numbers on this one?"(Continues…)
Excerpted from "Red, White & Royal Blue"
Copyright © 2019 Casey McQuiston.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is like warm hug from the future we deserve, where smart, reasonable and fair woman is the president of USA and all is well. The president’s son is forced to become fake friends with his mortal enemy, Prince Charming of England. And of course there is love in the air :) It took me a while to get into this book, but once I was hooked, I couldn’t put it down. Alex and Henry were so cute and adorable, I couldn’t get enough of them. It was so nice to read something like this, I just kept smiling on all the goofiness of the boys and their relationship development. I loved that I got to see a bit of USA politics in play, even if sometimes I had to google some things which I didn’t understand. I am sure this book will be wildly loved. And author's note at the end almost made me cry. Thank you so much St. Martin's Press and Netgalley for granting my wish and letting me read this amazing book sooner. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
I loved this book so much!! I couldn't put it down the first time I read it. It has such a good romantic story. I loved all of the characters in the book. Being the mother of a gay son I can only hope he finds someone like this in the future. I loved Alex and Henry's chemistry, wit, and the emails written to each other showed so much love.
Such a sweet, beautiful novel of love. I couldn’t put it down!
I think , the Urban Dictionary , should from now on, describe the feeling of Delight . Happiness . Joie de vivre . Cheerfulness as RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE ; because that what I felt reading this amazing and utterly entertaining book. I just reviewed Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. #NetGalley [NetGalley URL]
I absolutely 100% love this book! It is full of heart and hope, and I can not recommend it enough.
Red, White, And Royal Blue is the story of Alex, the first son of the United States, and Henry the Price of Whales. From the time Alex first meets Henry, he develops hatred towards him. He thinks Henry is a royal prick. Alex and his sister and best friend Nora get invited to Prince Phillips royal wedding and when Alex gets drunk, him and henry have some words and end up ruining the $75,000 wedding cake. The press run the story as them fighting and they have to do some major PR to make it seem like they like each other. Henry and Alex have to put on a show that they are best friends and sending so much time together leads to a romantic relationship. Through the book Alex comes to terms with his bisexuality, ignoring all the signs from growing up that he could have been interested in men. Prince Henry has been gay his whole life, but in order to protect the crown he cannot show his true self. This story is about acceptance, true love in any form, and a whole lot of politics! (maybe a little too much for my taste). I really enjoyed the themes in this book though. First female president, bisexual first son, gay prince, sex scandal in the white house. I believe that Casey is so brave to touch on these subjects and this book is taking the world by storm already!
I am an absolute sucker for books about fictional modern royalty and books with LGBT characters, so I thought that this book might be right up my alley. Y'all. I was NOT prepared for how much I love this book. Usually, I don't have great attention, and I kind of can't wait to get to the end of a book no matter how good it is. This was definitely not the case for Red, White, & Royal Blue. This book was so good and so entertaining that I found myself getting sadder as I got closer to the end. I was actually mad when I finished the book, but I wasn't upset because of the book's ending—I was upset because the book was ending. I spent every free minute I had reading this book until it was over. The writing was both incredibly hilarious (BIG shoutout to The Great Turkey Calamity, Ellen's powerpoint slides, and June's plot to take out Woody Allen) and thought provoking at times. The writing in this book also flowed so well that every minute I was reading this book, I was completely caught up in it, and all my surroundings (as well as a few hours, oops) disappeared. It is so surprising to me that this is a debut novel because this is the kind of writing you usually find after an author has written a book or two. The characters were complex and realistic, and I found myself absorbed in them. Not only did the I absolutely love the relationship between Alex and Henry, but I also loved the various relationships between family, friends, and both Alex and Henry's respective staff members. The evolution of the characters throughout the book is also amazing. Seeing them struggle through working out their identities, their goals, and how those two things work together made me think about those same things in my own life. To sum it all up, I really love this book, y'all. Please go buy it and read it.
I have so many feelings about this book that it's hard to articulate them into a review. I adored everything about it, from the very sweet relationship, to Alex coming to understand his queerness, to the representation, to the world of hope Casey created. Her characters are so well made, so flawed and real and hilarious. I was also so impressed by the political side of this book, the speeches and campaign and ending were all so well done (I literally got goosebumps from the political speeches!). I wish we could all live inside the world of this book, and books like this make me believe it's possible again.
*****5+++ STARS!!***** This was surprisingly my first M/M romance. I have nothing against them AT ALL, but I'm so glad that Alex and Henry, or as I'd like to call them "Henlx", were my first! This book has everything I look for in a good romance, the sweet but sarcastic banter, the chemistry (My goodness, THE CHEMISTRY!), the slow anticipation. It was pure perfection. Did I mention I've never read a royalty romance either? I know, I'm a freak. Now, when is Netflix turning this into a movie??? I need it and I NEED IT NOW! For the time being I will settle on reading it again and again. There was a prior review where someone said something like "Is it possible for my whole body to smile? Because this book did that." I couldn't agree with that reviewer more. This book will cause a whole body smile. More than once. READ THIS BOOK!
Discovering debut authors can be a great thing and Casey McQuiston is proof of that. When I stumbled across “Red, White & Royal Blue” I was anxious to read it. This book is so much more than just a romance. It's heart-wrenching, gave me hope for the future and made me smile. The First Son, Alex hated Henry, the Prince of Wales so it wasn't easy for him to pretend to be friends with him. But after an incident at a royal wedding that could have caused big problems for the two countries, he had to go along with the deception. Both men were surprised when they actually became friends, then more. As they sent texts, emails and phone calls they started to depend on the other. When they fell in love, they knew they had to keep their relationship a secret for the sake of their countries and families. Their romance was wonderful. I wish I had their kind of relationship. This emotional romance will have you rooting for the men to have a happy ending. I loved that a woman was president. AND she had biracial children. While we were taken into the world of politics, this book was strong on family and feelings. Politics can often be dry reading, but that didn't happen here. The various sexual orientations were handled well and the friendships made me wish I was one of them. The author created an incredible romance with unlikely characters and unusual settings. I can't thank the publisher and NetGalley enough for the chance to read this incredible book.
I was a bit scared of reading this one. There were so many 5 stars I was scared that I would be the one weird person who didn't feel the same. But I worried for no reason. This book was so good and definitely deserves all the praise it's been getting. When the First Son of the United States and the Prince of England get near each other, chaos normally ensues. And this time was no different. Now they're forced to act as best friends when it's clear they'd rather do anything but. Until they start looking at each other differently. They begin to forget, with Alex's mom's re-election bid and Henry helping to keep up his image, that they didn't hate each other after all.... I know I love a book when I catch myself with real feelings about it. And this was the case with this book. I went through the complete cycle of emotions, from laughing, crying, laughing while crying, the whole nine. I felt so connected to this book. I'm not sure of the last one I was into this much. Where I cried THIS hard. It was so good and I hope everyone else that reads it loves it just as much. As for the romance, I LOVED it! The idea to put the son of the US and the Prince of England together was perfection. I loved their sneaking around too lol It gave new meaning to foreign affair! Although it literally took only one very small incident between them that made him change his mind, I liked that they got together so quickly and we were able to see them actually be together. And because of that, I was really terrified of what I knew was coming. I just KNEW there was going to be something that came up in their relationship that broke them up and by then I was so into their relationship that I was terrified to get there. (I was more worried about HOW it happened than anything but I don't want to add it for fear of spoilers) As for the writing style, I did feel like it felt kind of jumpy. (But that could have been only my e-ARC not having any breaks in between changing scenes.) But I was still swooped into this story. I wanted it to be real life. From the 2016 election and the one from 2018 in Texas. I also laughed at so many parts, I found myself nervously talking to the book when the election came up, and swooning when certain other things came up. It's been a long time since I was this into a book. I didn't want to stop reading and I was so scared of what would happen to these characters. Although its a bit on the lengthy side, I can't really say there was anything I didn't enjoy. This is one book I was so excited for for so long and I'm so happy it lived up to my expectations.I can't wait for everyone else to read this book too!
AMAZING, PHENOMENAL. SHOW-STOPPING. I didn’t put it down and read it all in 4 hours.....and will dive in again tomorrow!
Still smiling and crying.
Surprisingly fun and positive.
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Summary: In Red, White & Royal Blue, Alex, the first son of the United States, and Henry, the Prince of Wales, are forced to spend time together in an urgent attempt to mend political images after a very public altercation happens between them. During their staged bromance, Alex and Henry build an unlikely friendship, surprised to actually enjoy each other’s company. Alex has always been sharp-witted and quick to speak his mind, but when he pulls his usual antics on Henry, his seemingly stuffy and boring arch nemesis, he finds he’s bitten off more than he can chew. What Alex thought was just a blooming new friendship turns into a relationship he didn’t even realize he wanted. Now, Alex can’t get enough of Henry. He yearns for him, wanting every inch of him at every moment of the day. But image is important—especially when you’re two of the biggest figureheads in the world. Coming out is not in line with the crown or Alex’s mother’s current campaign for re-election. When Alex realizes his idyllic “love is all you need” mentality has been nothing but a farce, his entire world comes crashing down. But the real question is—will Henry be there to help him mend a new one? Why This is a Must-Read: There are so many things to love about this book! The romance between Alex and Henry is an ooey-gooey love story to die for, mixed with so much grit. Their relationship is steamy and turbulent but also gentle and sweet. While I loved all the characters, my very favorite was Henry, the Prince of Wales. He’s deep, relatable (and that’s saying a lot since he was literally a prince!) and very surprising. I’m not sure if I’ve ever rooted so hard for a fictional character!
“For the weirdos and the dreamers.” Right from the author’s dedication, I connected with this book. After all, anyone who dedicates a book to weirdos and dreamers must also be one, right? Add in absolutely witty one-liners from the main character’s point of view, such as “the wedding is as sexy as a business transaction” and you have a snarky, sarcastic, and loveable leading man. Alex Claremont-Diaz instantly connects readers to his world, and we find ourselves cheering him on. The main problem I had with the book is a personal one, so therefore I didn’t dock any points/stars. I was warned before I read the novel that there were graphic scenes and rated R moments (after all, it is not classified as YA – it’s New Adult/NA). I personally dislike reading sexual scenes and anything related to the matter, so I wasn’t a fan of those parts. Alex Claremont-Diaz’s world is fraught with political correctness and is continuously in the public eye. I loved seeing the insides of The White House and how the First Son fit into the mold (also I would totally vote for Alex’s mom?? Claremont 2020 run please??) Red, White & Royal Blue is Casey McQuiston’s debut novel! If we don’t get more in the future, I for one am going to be sorely disappointed.
This is officially my favorite book of all time! I laughed, i cried. I felt so many different feelings i can’t even explain. If you wanted different results in 2016, this is for you. If you’ve struggled with questioning your sexuality, this is for you. If you’re a human with a pulse, this is for you. Can’t recommend highly enough!
I couldn't believe this was Casey McQuiston's debut novel - what a stunning and witty read! Considering I'm not a very political person, I found the dialogue to be extremely funny and well-researched. The banter between Alex and Henry is captivating and the diversity of characters within the story had me hooked the entire way. It's rare to find an LGTBQ romance book these days, and I must say, McQuiston has really outdone herself. Thank you to Netgalley, St.Martin’s Press and the author for the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
The cover of this book caught my attention when I was browsing titles on NetGalley. Red, White, and Royal Blue; even the title was intriguing. After having read the description, I wanted in. Casey McQuiston’s debut novel did not disappoint me. This was a charming YA romance that gave so much more than just the giddiness of a new relationship. This deals with the way a relationship develops, from friendship to love. It’s about LGBTQ relationships and how our political leaders can influence and help improve rights for LGBTQ people around the world. It’s about politics and politicians and what we hope they can be and what we pray they aren’t. This takes place in an alternate reality where a divorced woman becomes President of the United States. Casey states that this started out as an escape for her after the 2016 election and morphed into an amazing story of romance, politics, hope, and relationships. Meet Alex Claremont-Diaz, FSOTUS or First Son of the United States if you don’t know. Alex lives a life most of us only imagine. Yes, there are demands and pressures that come with being part of the First Family, but there are also perks, like throwing a New Year’s Eve party at the White House for you, your friends, fellow celebrities, young royals, etc. Speaking of young royals, the youngest heir to the English throne, His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales, is a persistent thorn in Alex’s side. There is just something about his smug, arrogant, coy, handsome face that really rubs Alex the wrong way. And after a couple of drinks, Alex is REALLY irritated just watching Henry schmooze his way around the room at the royal wedding. But, it was certainly not ALEX’s fault that Henry fell into the wedding cake… a cake that was reported to have cost $75,000. Regardless of whose fault it was, the consequences are beyond tedious. Because now Alex and Henry are forced to pretend they are actually best friends, whose horsing around caused the whole “cake-gate” episode and Alex is grinding his teeth just trying to get through it all. What’s confusing is how suddenly Henry isn’t as dull and stuck-up as Alex thought he was. And maybe he’s actually got a sense of humor. And now, when Henry sends Alex a text it kind of helps him get through his day filled with meetings and classes and pouring over policy. Now, Alex kind of counts down the minutes until Henry sends him a message. You’ll want to read this book, you SHOULD read this book. People are all alike. Even if you aren’t LGBTQ, you’ve experienced a crush, a relationship, maybe you’ve experienced love. And that is a shared experience we can all relate to. This is a book about self-discovery and acceptance and all the good things you want to see in a good book.
I heard about this book last summer and have been dying to read it. This book started really slow for me, it took me almost a week to get to 20%. I was hoping I hadn’t built it up to much in my mind and was determined to keep going. The premise for this story was so good and unlike anything else I had read I wanted to love it. Overall is was a great storyline that could have been excited better but was still a cute read. I think my issues early on were that areas seemed to have rough transitions and the story was building so it would seem as if I missed something. I would then go back and realize they just abruptly changed scenes. Also I feel like the 3rd person approach to the story was distracting for me and ultimately not the best way to tell the story. The political aspect with the re-election campaign really didn’t interest me and seemed to drag a bit.
Thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin's Press for providing me with an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This book was AWESOME. Seriously, I loved every minute of it. It was light-hearted, but still felt like it had high stakes. It was political, but not so much that it was depressing or overbearing. It was almost fairy-tale-esque romance, but not so much so that it didn't feel deep or true or powerful. It was realistic in ways that, unless you've gone through coming out and hiding love, you just wouldn't understand the depth of the realism. Set in a world where the hateful didn't win 2016, it's a world of hope, and Alex and Henry are a breath of fresh air. It honestly makes me want a dreamy prince of my own... but to be fair, I've been told I look a lot like Prince Harry, so it might be awkward to marry a doppleganger prince... and he's taken now anyways. *sigh* I adored this book and highly recommend it. Five stars.