This is actually two books and four short stories that chronicle the romances of two princes and two princesses of the fictional country of Cordina. It is also the story of how that royal family is threatened, bands together, and defeats a political terrorist.
We are introduced to this family by the oldest daughter, Gabriella who has just escaped from somewhere, and is suffering from amnesia. I found Gabriella’s struggle to remember her life and the details surrounding her kidnapping believable. Assisting her in picking up her life and protecting her from the unknown kidnappers, is American Reeve MacGee. Romance and investigation follow. The characters in this story were well developed, and believable. I enjoyed watching each of them face their own personal struggles with dignity and courage.
The next segment follows Gabriella’s brother Alexander, the heir to the throne, and his romantic interest, Eve Hamilton. The mastermind behind the events in the first story is still on the loose, and creates complications for the prince and the playwright. Alexander reminds me of a friends character and so is particularly enjoyable to read about and he meets his match in Miss Eve with the usual amount of misunderstandings and romantic moments.
Youngest Prince, Bennett is paired with the Lady Hannah. Now I found the premise of this romance interesting, but did not enjoy the way the characters and their relationship developed. Romance should not be used as a power play in a relationship – which is acknowledged and apologized for after the incident, but it was not a step I quite believed when it happened, nor enjoyed for its own sake. I adore Lady Hannah, and in the two previous books, found Prince Bennet likable and he recovers somewhat. It brings closure to the ongoing terrorist issue and I found the intrigue side of the story much more interesting than the romantic leads. I do not regret reading the story, but it is one I would only selectively re-read.
Finally there is Princess Camilla, daughter of Gabriella and Reeve of the first book, and a woman tired of the media. She goes off on her own in order to have time to think about her life and find a passion. When she meets Dr. Delaney Caine, the grouchy archaeologist is not her idea of good company, but his studies are fascinating, and she soon comes to like the irritable doctor as well. He isn’t so sure what he thinks of her. Again, wonderful characterization, humor, and romance. No meta plot keeps this story going, and the principles are much more entertaining perhaps to make up for it. I believed both characters and they both amused and entertained me. Which is really all I want out of a romance novel anyway.