Albright, Emily. The Heir and the Spare
January 18th 2016 by Merit Press
Copy from public library
Evie is very excited to be able to study at Oxford University, following the footsteps of her parents. She is especially glad because her mother died when she was young, and had written letters for her every year on her birthday. There's a letter waiting in England, and many more clues to her mother's past to be revealed. There is also the insanely hot Edmund, who looks familiar, but whom she can't place. Since she immediately makes a group of friends with whom she is able to socialize, she quickly figures out that the boy on whom she has a crush is actually PRINCE Edmund, although he is the younger brother. He likes her, too, and they manage to find enough time away from their studies to travel to places her mother recommends, avoiding the paparazzi most of the time, but not enough. Jax, who has her cap set for Edmund with both family's best wishes, is very annoyed by Evie, especially since she is an American. Things become complicated when the secrets Evie is just finding out about her lineage come to light.
Studying at Oxford? Dating a prince? Finding out that your family is more important to British history than you previously thought? Sigh. I adored this one. Anything set in England, especially when it is filled with trips to famous sites and references to British geek culture (Dr. Who, anyone?) is fascinating to me. My only question is this: if Prince William is over 30 and a balding father, and Prince George is a chubby toddler, will teenage girls still want to read about falling in love with a prince, or will it be a few years?
I was so close to buying this, but at the very, very end of the book there is a scene where Edmund and Evie get much closer than I would like them to. It's delicately enough done for high school, but I think I will pass on middle school.
While I fully supported Princess Diana, like many women my age, I fully believe that I would have made a much better princess for Charles! Not that anyone of us gave this much thought back in the 1980s...