Royal Scandal: A Royals in Exile Novel

Royal Scandal: A Royals in Exile Novel

by Marquita Valentine

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399594748
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/24/2017
Series: Royals in Exile , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 200
Sales rank: 15,672
File size: 886 KB

About the Author

Marquita Valentine is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Take the Fall, Holland Springs, and Boys of the South series, which have sold more than a quarter of a million books around the world. She’s been called “one of the best new voices in romance” (Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews) and her books have been praised as “sexy, fun, and slightly addicting” (The Book Queen). When she’s not writing sexy heroes who adore their sassy heroines, she enjoys shopping, reading, and spending time with her family and friends. Married to her high-school sweetheart, Marquita Valentine lives in a seriously small town in the south with her husband, two kids, and a dog.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

Colin

It’s the first day of the new school year for my boys and I’m nearly going mad trying to keep up with their questions while I fill out the last of the paperwork at my desk.

We have exactly ten minutes before the driver picks us up and I’m only half done. At this rate, I’ll never finish.

“Will I get to eat?”

“Yes.”

“Will the kids like me?”

“Of course.”

“Can I take Toady?”

Pausing, I cut my eyes at Aiden. Naturally he wants to take to school the blasted frog we rescued from the pool last night. “Absolutely,” I begin and his face lights up. “Not.”

He falls into the chair beside his brother and crosses his arms, his bottom lip jutting out like a three-year-old instead of a boy of eleven.

Amazing that.

“Is she coming?” Pierce asks as he bounces in the chair beside me. He’s eleven months younger than his brother, but they’re so alike in looks and temperament that they are frequently mistaken for twins.

Before I can answer, Aiden cuts in. “Della always keeps her promises.”

I want to ask him if he’s implying that I don’t, but it’s not worth the fight that will inevitably ensue and then end with hurt feelings that will make me feel guilty for at least a week.

Who am I kidding? I always feel guilty. I felt guilty the first time I sent them away to boarding school, in the grand Sinclair tradition. They’d clung to me, begging not to go . . . that they’d be so good and listen all the time.

My heart cracked at that. Still does whenever I think of it—like now. Damn it. I push away the memories and focus on the questionnaire I should have answered weeks ago.

“That she does, which is why she should be here any second,” I say, agreeing. Setting the paperwork I aside, I rub the bridge of my nose and exhale. “Look. I know you’re nervous about starting a new school.”

“Our fourth new school,” Aiden reminds me, as if I need to remember the expulsions and fights and general hell that our life became once I sent them away.

“Quite so. Your fourth new school, but it is a beginning and with that comes a fresh start.”

Pierce kicks his legs back and forth, his shoes scraping on the rug. “Della said that our teachers are kind.”

“And smart.”

I nod. “Della wouldn’t lie.” Unlike I have to do—day in and day out—to protect them, of course. No need for them to mourn for parents they have no idea are theirs.

Hell, they think of Della as their mother. She’s been there for nearly every scrape, every first moment—like when Pierce started walking—and every loose tooth. I taught them how to ride a bike. She taught them how to roller skate. I taught them how to swim in our Olympic size pool. She taught them how to fish in the pond behind her house.

“Nope,” they say in unison.

“And Della loves us,” Pierce adds.

“That she does.” And I love Della.

Not that it matters.

I can’t tell her how I feel.

Besides, even if I did, nothing can come of us. For years, I’ve worked tirelessly with Parliament to get our exile overturned. I’ve promised everything but my firstborn in exchange for a full pardon for our family. My last exchange with them has resulted in silence on their end—perhaps a good omen for once, since Prime Minister Davies usually responds with a resounding no in a matter of milliseconds.

In any case, that, along with raising these two boys, keeping my siblings out of the tabloids, and expanding Sinclair Enterprises are my only goals in this world.

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Royal Scandal: A Royals in Exile Novel 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 42 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Royal Scandal Wow!!! I just found another family that I fell in love with. This modern day Cinderella story has everything; secrets, scandal, sacrifice, betrayal, and of course love. Colin is in over his head suddenly finding himself in a foreign country and struggling to take care of his family, until the beautiful and sassy Della comes into his life. Can he confine in her and ask his best friend to help him get back what rightfully belongs to his family. Della loves Colin but will she help him and his family without losing her heart and can she tell him her own secret. This story kept me captivated until the end. Can not wait for the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story gives you enough to be invested in the rest of the series it's a good start.
gaele More than 1 year ago
I don’t know where this story failed in the writing to release process, I just know for me this was a miss. Having enjoyed Marquita Valentine’s Take the Fall new adult series, and enjoyed the characters, their voices and the writing, this was an easy choice. Royals, love and a dance around a Cinderella-like romance and I was all in. Solid writing with witty banter and a clear path from Colin’s employee to his friend for Della, the initial mishmash brought our story forward, introducing the characters and establishing voices (and some personality traits) that gave a clear sense of the story. Then we get into the meat of the plot, with the back and forth, a romance and the kerfuffle that follows, and most of the goodwill built in the early part of the book started to evaporate. From losing that strong feel and sense of characters’ voice and personality, I was seeing not so well-placed insertions that were redolent of, if not quite over the edge of direct retelling of a plot (or 5) of a romantic comedy movie. I can name four or five. Now, I’m as game for another retelling of Cinderella, or P&P, even Earnest and Pygmalion, but I want those to be unique and feel as if they organically arrived and appeared as part of what I am reading. These didn’t. Not true to the characters that were introduced, and their purpose felt more filler than actual events that happened to the characters, or even could have. Then, we have the change in dialogue, or lack of when we moved to sensual scenes. From a clear and defined, rather proper and erudite man, Colin turned into a filthy mouthed parrot – repeating the same phrases and words that were better suited to anyone but him. And there was little variation or imagination applied as scenes progressed. I’m all in when the scene calls for some dirty talk, and when it fits, it really fits. But, the reverse is also true: when it doesn’t work, the discomfort with the scene increases, and repeated use shows a failure to imagine something different where that character is concerned. It just didn’t work. Period. So, I’m left with a book that showed promise and soon took that away, with frequent veiled and not so veiled inclusions that felt out of place and interrupted flow and character continuity. I wanted to like it, I just couldn’t with the issues and I’m now left with a conundrum. I don’t know where this story failed in the writing to release process, I just know for me this was a miss. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
JWright57 More than 1 year ago
What a great book to start a new series with. This author knows how to give us a modern take on The classic Cinderella story. Crown Prince Colin Sinclair of the Isle of Man has been living in exile with his siblings, he was only 19 when his parents were assassinated and as the eldest he had to grow up pretty quickly and take care of his brothers and sisters. He becomes a father to his youngest brothers and he has allowed everyone to believe that his boys are his sons so when he finally finds a way for the family to go back to the Isle of Man many people are in for a shock including Della who has worked for him and cared for the two young boys. Will this fairytale have a HEA or will the people who exiled the family win again...... I loved the characters in this book after all who wouldn't fall in love with a heroine who is kind, thoughtful and sees the best in everyone add in a sexy Prince and you have a perfect book to curl up with.
Anonymous 17 days ago
But im not a fan of chapter 1 from her point of view and chpter 2 from his, then back again
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cute fun read...sweet and sexy story.
BuckeyeAngel More than 1 year ago
Colin is a crowned prince but where he is from only Queens rule but that wasn’t anything to worry about. Right now dirty diapers, and colic, spit up. And exploding bottles of formula that Colin’s life right now. Theo his brother who was seventeen hands Colin a towel. Then Pierce starts screaming again and Theo said “ told you he wasn’t hungry” then Colin said what do you suggest ? Theo said he had no idea. Then Colin Looked at Pierce who was four months old but he won’t eat, won’t sleep and very little consoled him. Theo says he misses his mother and we need many a nanny we don’t know the first thing about raising children. Then Colin said he has him,Pierce, Aidan. Charlotte. And Imogene. Sinclairs can do anything they set their minds too. Aidan who was fifteen months old. And had called Theo “ daddy” today and he didn’t know what to say. Their parents were dead. Family was all Colin had now. Colin and his family were all dealing with the death of their parents who had been assassinated and their family in exile in different way. Colin was trying to gain control whereas Theo wants to lose control. Colin wished he had some uninterrupted sleep. Then He took Pierce outside to walk him and met Della. No one in the small town knew who Colin was and Colin intended to keep it that way as long as he could. Della had taken Pierce and Patted his back and Pierce burped that was his problem. Della said she was good with kids and had been babysitting since she was thirteen.Colin suggested Della become his wife in name only. They plan on taking a fake honeymoon. But the honeymoon became real. I really loved this story. I felt so bad for Colin yet he did what he had he had to take care of his siblings Then Aidan and Pierce were so cute and I loved them. The siblings all added to this story but the youngest…. I also loved that the oldest female rules and becomes queen instead of having a king. I loved Della and Colin together still taking care of the family ten years later. This was a fun read and I loved the story as well as the plot and the way it is presented. There was also a lot of surprises. I can’t really think of anything I didn’t like in this story. I loved the characters and the ins and outs of this story and I highly recommend.
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Anlenhart1 More than 1 year ago
Royal Scandal is a modern fairy tale that features Colin, a exiled prince in hiding in North Carolina and Della, his best friend and surrogate mother to his 3 younger brothers and 2 sisters. Colin never told Della his family's story and she just assumed he was a single father. They have grown very close and Colin is approached by parliament about restoring the monarchy with the condition of his marriage to princess of their choice. (Colin's country is traditionally Matriarchal). He decides to find an unsuitable American wife and his first choice is Della who also works as his maid. She has feelings for Colin and jumps at the chance make her dreams come true. Soon their marriage drawing a lot of attention, how will Della react when her husband reveals his big secret? This was a entertaining fairy tale that was just a really sweet story. I liked the character development and found the setting magical. If your a fan of contemporary romance that is a fun blend of sweet and heat, this is the book for you! I was given a free copy for an honest review.
RomanticReadsandSuch More than 1 year ago
Y’all, I absolutely LOVED Valentine’s Take the Fall series and was super excited that she was starting a new one (especially with a prince!) And she definitely didin’t disappoint. The friendship between Colin and Della is fantastic. It’s so sweet how she’s there to help him as he struggles to keep his family together. She’s that understanding, mother figure that the family needs and the support he especially needs. Of course, there’s more going on between them than either of them is willing to own up to, plus quite a few secrets on both sides. Which, understandably, means that their fake relationship is going to be anything but smooth sailing. Things definitely get a little messy along the way (not too drama laden though thankfully), but they’ve got a strong enough bond amongst them all that they’ll figure it out somehow. Over the course of the book we’re given a little glimpse of the royal intrigues (and at just how screwy the Sinclair parents were) but more importantly we get a few chances to learn about the Sinclair siblings. Each of them is sure to have a story coming up and I’ll be waiting with bells on! Valentine is such a deft story teller that she’d make even the phone book an enjoyable read, but with this group she’s got the material to make things really juicy and fun :) *** I voluntarily read a Review Copy of this book. All opinions stated are solely my own and no one else’s. ***
DaneWeimMama More than 1 year ago
Royal Scandal is one of those books you read when its been a crappy day & you need an escape- Marquita Valentine takes you on a fantastic journey of laughter, family, & fun. And sexy time ;) I loved the story & the characters are so fun & entertaining. I can't wait to read the next book in the A Royals in Exile series (Royal Scandal was the first book) I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
MTSmith More than 1 year ago
This was an interesting take on the marriage of convenience trope. The idea is the same, marry someone who's the opposite of who you are supposed to marry, what makes this interesting is there is already a relationship between Colin and Della - they're friends. They're not complete strangers or even acquaintances. They're honest-to-God friends. That's what sets this story apart for me. They know each other in and out, through and through. Colin's secret aside, him being royalty and living in exile, they have what some marriage of convenience couples don't have: trust. Like any relationship, that's an important building block, and they already have it in place. Which makes their romance a friends to lovers one too. Marriage might have been a huge leap from the frying pan to the fire but I think going from friends to lovers was an even bigger one. Because they had to know, maybe even suspect, that it would become more than name only once they were alone as man and wife, once attraction took root, once desire propelled them forward even just a little bit. It's like foreplay that takes all day, you know? A touch, a whisper, a look, a kiss, a sigh. Every little thing hints at the currents running between them. Every little thing leads to bed and melt-the-paint-off-the-walls hot sex. But where do they go from there? The deed's done. They're officially man and wife now. A piece of paper said they were; consummating their marriage made it so. But do they try to play it off as getting caught up in the moment? Or do they explore what's there but hasn't been fully touched on yet? The idea of a royal family living Stateside without detection might seem a little far-fetched (I'm not sure how that even works), but it's a minor detail in the grand scheme of this story. Colin and Della are meant for one another, even if Della doesn't believe in fairy tales. Their friendship culminating in marriage then ending with declarations of love is a fairy tale, a well told modern day, sugary sweet with a hint of heat, fairy tale. 4.5* Complimentary copy received from publisher
Crystal61 More than 1 year ago
Colin and his family were exiled when he was young and moved to America. Della took him to task for evicting her and her stepmother. He apologizes and corrects the situation. Over the next ten days, their friendship builds. His past and present finally collide, and Colin asks Della to help him try to rescue his heritage. I fell in love with this protective, caring, and strong young man. He may have made his mistakes and kept his secrets until almost too late, but I wanted forgiveness between Colin and Della as well as a future. I enjoyed this story and recommend it. I look forward to the next in the series. I received a copy of this story through Netgalley, and this is my unsolicited review.
SmutCrazy More than 1 year ago
F 50x66 Nickie Adler's review Jan 12, 2017 · edit really liked it Read from January 11 to 13, 2017 When his parents are assassinated, Crown Prince Colin Sinclair, is forced to flee his country with his siblings, and go to live in the United States. As the oldest, at nineteen, he has to become the parent to his five siblings ranging in age from 17 to 6 months. Thanks to the caretaker of their property in Charlotte, North Carolina, Colin gets help from Della. She becomes his best friend and confidant as he tries his best to raise his siblings. Ten years have passed and Colin realizes that he's been falling in love with Della throughout the years. Back in his country, Parliament requests a meeting with him to discuss the future of the monarchy., asking Colin to marry a princess of their choosing so he can return and rule the country. To take revenge, Colin asks Della to marry him, knowing that Parliament will not accept her, since she's an American. Della Hughes has been in love with Colin since she met him. She has helped him raise his two young sons (a fact that he never told Della, that they are his siblings). When Colin reveals that he is a Prince and not just a businessman, and then asks her to marry him, she is not only shocked but delighted. Even if it's only a pretend marriage, she can always dream of more. I loved this book, it was like a Disney story with hot sex. I know that sounds weird, but then this isn't a Disney story, but it is a very sexy hot book!
AFOX0 More than 1 year ago
Funny, Sweet and Romantic Royal Scandal is an exquisitely romantic story that will sweep you away. Far from a Disney Cinderella story all wrapped up neatly, it does have it’s ups and downs, especially when it involves the Sinclair clan. This is Colin and Della’s story. It’s also a great introduction to the members of the family who are wonderfully unique and charming. After the deaths of their parents, the Sinclair children are exiled for their protection. They settle in North Carolina where their identity as royalty is hidden from the public. Now ten years later, Colin Sinclair has stayed strong and focused in keeping the remaining family intact and protected while negotiating the provisions of their exile with parliament. But as a condition to repeal the exile, Colin must marry someone of their choosing. Not wanting to play their game, Colin wants to marry his longtime friend, Della Hughes. And all the Sinclair children love her. Della has secretly been in love with Colin since they’ve moved into the estate house where she and her stepmother are caretakers. Colin loves how Della has stepped up to being a mother figure for the youngest Sinclairs. But Colin has kept a secret about the two youngest boys from her. And Della has one of her own she can’t reveal. Once the secrets are laid out, they might be deal breakers to the new found marriage. I loved the funny banter and sweet romantic journey of these two lovers. The latest reveal in the story is the biggest scandal and could potentially destroy the family and the Sinclair legacy. This has one delicious plot. Ms Valentine writes a well-written story with humor, witty banter and romance in Royal Scandal. It is a marriage of convenience with a friends to lovers romance all wrapped into one. There is an epilogue that looks into Colin and Della’s lives five years later, and it’s everything you can imagine for them. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series. I received an ARC copy from Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept via NetGalley. I voluntarily reviewed this book.
MJSanders1021 More than 1 year ago
My head is spinning from all that transpired but I just couldn't put the book down. I still do not know what the truth is but I guess we will find out as the series continue. I would say that I loved the fairytale of Della and Colin. He was a man out to protect his family and he put them above all else. The sacrifices were great because of the sins and scandals of his ancestors. Shoot I do not know where to begin but I know the middle, ending, and beginning was sweet. Shoot now what will be unveiled?
BookMama_1 More than 1 year ago
I'm on the fence with this one. It is a decent read and does keep you interested, but there were a few things that I kept thinking about throughout the book. This review does contain spoilers so read them at your own risk. First, why did Colin keep the boys paternity a secret from Della? They were best friends for 10 years so I don't understand why that was such a secret. I do understand him wanting to protect the boys, but Della would not have shouted it to the world. Especially since she didn't know who he really was. And what would it hurt for her to know? Second, this whole scandal of being exiled. The murder of their parents was an intimate matter and not a matter of the so-called "rebellion" happening at the time. Why did nobody else from parliament wonder where their royal family fled too? Why would they, as a whole, decide to leave all contact and decisions with the royals up to one person and not investigate for themselves? Government is sneaky no matter your country, but was the prime minister crooked too??? Can't help but wonder. When I read about what really happened to the parents, the whole scenario made no sense to me. Wouldn't other members in office wonder what the heck was going on when their country was failing as bad as it was and no royals had stepped foot on their soil in 10 years? And third, the circumstances surrounding the parent's murder. It came out so choppy with information given in such a backwards manner that I had to reread paragraphs over a couple times to understand what really went down. I get it now, but why was it so hard to say all that over multiple chapters? To me, that's a one paragraph explanation. Obviously you can have characters slip bits and pieces here and there of what happened to make characters question the true events, and that's expected and exactly what the author does. But the delivery of this part of the storyline just seemed to complicated to me. How about Theo's struggle with the truth? How the conversation with Pierce and Aiden about the truth? There was nothing about how they all struggled with the truth once it was known. To me, this would have added to the "Royal Scandal". I do think this was a decent read, it just needed a little more work to make it a smoother story.
DanieReads More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book. I loved Colin. He is the type of hero I really love in a book. He was sure of himself but not so self absorbed that he needs to sleep with a different woman every night. I liked Della too. I'm just a sucker for best friends falling for each other. Even though Colin and Della were bff they both had secrets from each other. I kind of felt the conflict in the relationship was silly from Della but I can kind of see her issue. I loved the resolution to the story and cant wait to read about the rest of the Sinclair siblings. 3.5 stars
Rhondaz More than 1 year ago
Royal Scandel by Marquita Valentine.....I felt like I was reading a fairytale. It is so sweet and cute I could not put it down. The characters are so well written and likeable. Colin and Della were fun to watch their stories be told. I highly recommend reading this book, it is well worth it. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.
LoriP123 More than 1 year ago
This book is great start to Marquita Valentine's Royals in exile series! I'm definitely looking forward to reading more books in this series. Colin Sinclair and Della Hughes have been friends for ten years after Colin moves his brothers and sisters out of country in order to protect them after their parents are killed. Even though they are friends Della doesn't know the whole truth about who they are or where they are from until Colin needs a wife in order to protect his family, their name and the throne. Della finds herself shocked, hurt and concerned that Colin is only using her, but soon their feelings change for one another and no matter what happens they are in it for the long haul. I was given an ARC from the author/publisher. All conclusions are mine and mine alone.
etoile1996 More than 1 year ago
in royal scandal, the fictitious exiled royals of the isle of man escaped their homeland as children, with only their eldest brother, colin, of an age to care for them and honestly at nineteen he was a child himself. that's when he first meets della hughes, his seventeen year-old neighbor who has come to give him the what-for given that he's just evicted her stepmother. colin never reveals the reasons why his family has fled to this hidden enclave in the carolinas. he doesn't share that the two baby boys he cares for are his brothers not his children. he never lets della in on his big secrets. but when parliament decides to offer him a deal to return, one that would make him king and also marry him off to a stranger he decides to take matters into his own hands. at the same time, his family is outed in the press as the exiled royal family and the secure enclave they'd retreated to all those years ago is under siege by the press. so colin proposes to della. at first he proposes a marriage of convenience. but then he quickly changes his mind, because he's been in love with this woman for his entire adult life and she is already the de facto mother of his boys. so he seduces her into changing her mind. while colin has been busy keeping secrets from della, she's not innocent of being fully honest either. her big secret is that she is infertile. and actually it's the kind of infertile that there is no getting around with miracles. colin is remarkably blasé about this revelation. della takes the revelation that the boys she's always assumed to be his children are his brothers much harder. and i think it's partly because there was so much other political drama involving these two as a couple that the additional bit of drama around della's lack of fertility felt underdeveloped. once she actually reveals her secret, it's kind of like an afterthought. which, i mean on the one hand, it's amazing that colin had no qualms about not being able to have biological children. on the other hand someone who was raised to believe in monarchy and lineage and preserving one's place in history would probably have a stronger reaction to the fact that their dna ends with them. a lot of colin's attitudes are actually remarkably progressive, but in a way that doesn't feel entirely earned. oh well. **royal scandal will publish on january 24, 2017. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/random house publishing (loveswept) in exchange for my honest review.
astroyic More than 1 year ago
Utterly Charming and So Sexy! Loved this Cinderella with a twist, romance story. Love, Love, Love reading about Royals and the writing in this royal romance was pure perfection. It was written in dual POV and I simply adore reading a book with both perspectives. The characters are well defined and likable as well as relatable. Once I started reading I couldn’t put it down. Colin Sinclair is a crown prince of the Isle of Man whose wealthy family has been exiled after the assignation of their parents. When they move to Charlotte, Colin must change his whole life from a Prince that loved to party to the head of the family with two small infants, a set of twin boys, a sister who was suppose to be Queen, as well as a brother just a few years younger. His life consists of dirty nappies and colic. When his neighbor Della Hughes confronts him regarding his attempt to remove the caretaker of the property, her mother, he feels he has found a kindred soul in her. Taken by her beauty, compassion and empathy. But he also is taken by a shot of desire that blasts through him when he takes her hand. Ten years later Della is not only his best friend but he also loves her, but with his family still in exile he can’t tell her how he feels. Colin has been working tirelessly with parliament to get his family back where they belong as well as expanding Sinclair Enterprises their family business. But when Parliament demands that the family can come back from exile only if Colin becomes King and he marries a princess of their choosing, he takes matter into his own hands and asks Della to marry him in name only. Shocked to find out that the man she loves is a Crown Prince, Della is fearful that she isn’t good enough for him. Will Della and Colin be married in name only to look back at this moment and regret that they weren’t brave enough to believe in themselves enough to try for a real marriage? Or will they succumb to their desires and make all their dreams come true. Don’t miss this Utterly Charming, Sexy, Sweet romance with Princely manners and tons of Sex Appeal that will literally sweep you off your feet. I swooned over this story hard!
Laura_F More than 1 year ago
An adorable friends-to-lovers Cinderella story! After their parents were assassinated, the Sinclair siblings fled to the States and hid their identity from everyone around them. As the oldest, Colin is now tasked with raising his younger siblings and keeping them all safe. After they move into their estate, Colin meets Della. After a tense first meeting, these two build a friendship. Fast forward ten years and Colin needs Della to marry him so his sister can take her rightful place on the throne. Can best friends enter into a marriage of convenience and not have it turn into more? I loved Colin and Della together. They made a phenomenal team. Their relationship showed that even best friends have secrets but when a relationship has a strong foundation in friendship, there is no obstacle that can't be overcome. The other Sinclair siblings have so much going on. I'm definitely looking forward to reading all about the Sinclairs!! *This is my voluntary review of an Advance Reader Copy*
Dalitza More than 1 year ago
An adorably sweet and sexy story about Royal Scandals and fairytale love. After forced to leave their country right on the heels of their murder, Prince Colin Sinclair and his brothers and sisters hide royal identities in a small town in North Carolina. Having only themselves to rely on, a barely old enough Colin assumes the role of guarding to his teenaged brother and twin sisters and as a father to his two baby brothers, yet he knows nothing about bottles and diapers. Fortunately the ground keeper’s daughter does and they soon form a friendship that will last a lifetime or until his secrets pull them apart. Della Hughes cleans houses by day and dresses up as princesses during her spare time, but that doesn’t mean she believes in fairytales until her best friend and the man she’s secretly loved for the past decade tells her one of his many secrets all while proposing she marry him for convenience because she’s perfectly unsuitable and their union will allow his oldest sister to become the rightful queen of the Isle of Man. But as they become husband and wife in name only and leave for their fake honeymoon more secrets are revealed and their mutual attraction is uncovered, can they also admit their true feelings and write their own happily ever after? Marquita Valentine gives us a wonderful hero. Colin is a blunt business owner, but what makes him impossible to resist is his devotion and loyalty to his family. He fully undertakes responsibility of their guardianship at the young age of nineteen despite the fact that his own parents had been venal and thoughtless. He further proves his swoon worthiness with Della’s sexy seduction once he realizes that he wants more than a marriage in name only with her. He want’s everything. Della is sweet and understanding, a pillar of strength for Colin and practically the youngest Sinclairs’ mother. She was a natural fit in Colin’s life despite her “commoner” origins. I would have loved to get more about the ten years between their initial meeting and when the big royal secret practically blew up on them but it’s clear that Della and Colin adore each other and that there’s nothing they wouldn’t do for one another. They have incredible chemistry but their path to happiness isn’t smooth sailing as they need to clear the way out of the web of lies that surround the Sinclairs. Speaking of the entire Sinclair clan, I loved getting to know all of them. They’re each very different personalities and I’m sure we’ll get to enjoy each of their stories in future books. Royal Scandal is the first book in the Royals in Exile series by Marquita Valentine. It is a standalone, full-length, contemporary romance with warm and sweet moments, delectably sexy times and a good dose of dramatic twists. Told from both points of view, with a fairy-tale happy ever after.