Monday, August 13, 2018

Royally Matched (Royally #2) by Emma Chase

Narrated by Andi Arndt & Shane East
Synopsis (via Goodreads): Some men are born responsible, some men have responsibility thrust upon them. Henry Charles Albert Edgar Pembrook, Prince of Wessco, just got the motherlode of all responsibility dumped in his regal lap.

He’s not handling it well.

Hoping to force her grandson to rise to the occasion, Queen Lenora goes on a much-needed safari holiday—and when the Queen’s away, the Prince will play. After a chance meeting with an American television producer, Henry finally makes a decision all on his own:

Welcome to Matched: Royal Edition.

A reality TV dating game show featuring twenty of the world's most beautiful blue bloods gathered in the same castle. Only one will win the diamond tiara, only one will capture the handsome prince’s heart.

While Henry revels in the sexy, raunchy antics of the contestants as they fight, literally, for his affection, it’s the quiet, bespectacled girl in the corner—with the voice of an angel and a body that would tempt a saint—who catches his eye.

The more Henry gets to know Sarah Mirabelle Zinnia Von Titebottum, the more enamored he becomes of her simple beauty, her strength, her kind spirit…and her naughty sense of humor.

But Rome wasn’t built in a day—and irresponsible royals aren’t reformed overnight.

As he endeavors to right his wrongs, old words take on whole new meanings for the dashing Prince. Words like, Duty, Honor and most of all—Love.
Only the villains lock ladies in a tower.
Then you make me want to be a villain.
My heart is swooning right now! I wasn't sure how I would feel about Henry after reading about him in Royally Screwed, but he was everything I wanted from a character. He loves his country and his family, but he's worried about his ability to make a difference. He's not used to the scrutiny his brother grew up with, and he's struggling to find his place now that people are counting on him.

Feeling overwhelmed, Henry makes an impulsive decision that did not provide the entertainment he was looking for. He foolishly thought it would help him feel more like himself, but it ended up having some pretty bad consequences. My heart broke for Henry over and over again. He always had the best intentions (even if they seemed careless at the time), but the world can be cruel and unfair. People are often selfish and only looking out for themselves, which usually means someone undeserving gets hurt.

Sarah is the sweetest person on Earth. She's supportive of her sister, has friends that she loves and enjoys being around, and is happy with her small place in the world. Henry's loud personality shakes her out of her comfort zone, but Sarah isn't a pushover. She'll defend those she loves even if it means she is the one that ends up getting hurt. I really liked who Sarah was with Henry. She was fierce and his equal in every way. She loves literature and treasures words, and she's honest to the core. 

There were some pretty nasty characters in this one (one repeat from the previous book, ugh), and the things they did made me visibly angry. At one point my husband said it looked like I was going to squeeze my phone into tiny pieces (audiobook), and wanted to know what I was listening to. Henry suiting up with ancient weapons to defend the one he loves -- ahhh. That has to be one of my favorite parts!

At the end when I could tell Henry's decisions were going to have unforeseen consequences, I had to keep reminding myself that there was still time left for a happy ending. He was doing what he thought was best, and trying to protect Sarah, but authors like to drag you through the mud first. Emma Chase made my heart constrict and made me wish my ears could listen faster. 

I loved this book! I'm loving this series! I cannot wait to dive in to the next one -- there's bound to be more excitement and adventures. Oh, and let me just say... Emma Chase knows how to write steamy sex scenes. She can also make me burst out laughing at any given moment -- love it!

Additionally, I adored Sarah's sister, Penelope. I really hope she gets her own book in the future! The ending wasn't anything like what I expected, but now I cannot imagine it happening any other way. It was perfect. Everything was perfect!

(Both narrators are amazing -- two of my favorites!)

26 comments:

  1. Yes, yes, yes!!! I loved this one so, so much! I remember listening to the first book and thinking "there's no way the others can live up to this." And yet now I find it impossible to pick a favorite. Despite Henry's playboy ways, he was actually self-aware and like you said, really loved his family and his country. And he and Sarah together... gah! That twist near the end (when they had to be apart) is one I never saw coming but it was so, so perfect. And made me love Henry and Sarah even more. And you're right about the narrators - Arndt and East are perfection. Love this series! :)

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    1. I didn't expect Henry to do what he did, but I understood his reasonings and came to appreciate his decision. Sarah's actions were even more of a surprise, but they also made perfect sense. I could easily see them both on the paths they had chosen for themselves, and how it would benefit them both (and the county) in the end.

      I loved when Sarah said something about trying it before you buy it, and it took Granny a moment to realize she was joking with her -- hehe. I really adored their grandmother and understood why she had to be so formal and unemotional most of the time. She did love her grandsons, though. That was obvious.

      Have you read the third book? Olivia's sister and Logan, right? It might not be royal, but I'm sure it'll still be delicious! <3

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    2. Yep, I read - well, listened to - the third one back in March. Ellie and Logan’s story. There were numerous time shifts that I felt through off the flow of the story a bit but I still loved it. I actually cried during this one climatic scene and even when I think about it now... *gets weepy* I can’t wait to see what you think of it!!!

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    3. Does the book start before this one ended? The epilogue for Royally Matched takes place three (I think) years later. Does Ellie's story not start then?

      Cried?? Ahh, these haven't made me cry yet! Now I'm worried about what's going to happen! I'm going to have to read the next one sooner rather than later. <3

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    4. Nope, the 3rd book starts in the past - well before book #2 ends. And then it jumps forward a few years. And then it jumps forward again. There were several time shifts and I understand the need to establish Ellie and Logan's history but it still felt a little jarring.

      Pay no mind to me crying... I cried in book #1 (when Olivia was being unfairly accused and ended up leaving the palace) and I cried in book #2... I'm such a sap. LOL

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    5. I guess that makes sense! RM skipped ahead to show what happened after their individual choices (they both made huge sacrifices to benefit their country), and I enjoyed seeing how their story eventually ended. Was there a clue in their ending? When Henry was listing all the people in attendance? Hmm.

      I can understand needing to establish a history for Logan and Ellie (because she was quite young when they met), and I'm looking forward to seeing the other characters, too!

      Oh, I almost cried when Olivia was being accused of something she didn't do. He was so mean about it! He never should have doubted her or her intentions, because she'd never given him a reason to. Also, Lancaster? Is that his name? I loathe him and wish someone would smash his face in. Oh wait... ;)

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  2. This is the part where I tell you how I have the first two books in this series (unread, of course, because I never read books I buy). I think I will be all caught up by November, and I really want to sit down and read this series. Your review definitely has me convinced that I made a good choice in buying these books. You listened to the audio?

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    1. I hope you're able to get caught up soon, especially if it means you'll be reading the first two books in this series! <3

      I've already purchased physical copies for myself, but I really enjoy the audiobooks. Both narrators are phenomenal and really make the story pop. Andi Arndt is also the narrator for the Stage Dive series by Kylie Scott (if you've listened to those). I'll probably finish this series on audio, because I'm able to get through those more quickly, but it's definitely a series for the shelves! I'll be re-reading this one for sure.

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  3. Love that quote! Makes me want to pick this one up for sure!

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    1. There were so many quotes to choose from! It was hard to choose a favorite. This one really stuck with me, though. I hope you're able to get to this series -- it's wonderful.

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  4. I would be curious to try this series

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    1. It's one of my favorites so far! I highly recommend it. :)

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  5. I've only read the first one but I did want to continue!

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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    1. Have you read the third one as well?

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  7. I haven't even read Royally Screwed! I haven't read anything by Emma Chase, but she gets so much love! I did just get a B&N gift card, so I might buy them both for my e-reader! I love the plot of gathering all these royals in one house. I'm sure that there was a ton of drama!

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    1. There was the drama associated with all reality TV shows, but not as much as you'd think. The producer loves drama (she thinks it sells), but the author focuses on other aspects of the story -- things I really enjoyed!

      A B&N gift card? Nice! I always have a hard time choosing books, haha.

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  8. Oh sweet! I have been considering this series and I do think you convinced me I need it in my life. I'll have to give it a go when I'm in the mood for a romance. Right now I'm wanting to listen to UF or fantasy for some reason. Brilly review!

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    1. Have you read Kelly Armstrong's Sea of Shadows? If you're in the mood for fantasy, look no further! It was a recent read for me, and I immediately fell in love with the world and the characters. When you're in the mood for a romance, definitely consider these! <3

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  9. So glad to see you enjoy this. I really love Emma Chase and I own the first book in the series. I really need to get to it soon!

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    1. Yes! I haven't read any of her other books yet, so what would you recommend? I'm definitely going to read more of her stories! Royally Screwed and Royall Matched were wonderful, meaningful stories that also made me blush. ;)

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  10. I've seen mixed things about this series, so I kind of wrote it off. I am always looking for a good audio so maybe I'll try the series that way. I just remember to turn the speed up when the angst comes, lol! Wonderful review, Lindsi! :)

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    1. Ahhh, I love these!! The audiobooks have been amazing, but I also purchased physical copies for my shelves and future re-reads! You'll have to try the first one and let me know what you think. :)

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  11. She is so much fun. I have these all in print because hello yummy covers but haven't gotten to them yet. I'll have to check out those narrators, too. Both are new to me.

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    1. The covers are definitely delicious! People always give me the side-eye when I'm reading books like this, but I just hold the book a little higher so they can get a better view. Constant side-eye can cause headaches and neck pain. ;)

      I haven't read any of her other books, but I'm going to. This series has been phenomenal, and the narrators are some of my favorites! I'm happy to introduce you to them. Andi Arndt also narrates Kylie Scott's Stage Dive series (another good one).

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“Stuff and nonsense. Nonsense and stuff and much of a muchness and nonsense all over again. We are all mad here, don't you know?”
― Marissa Meyer, Heartless