Review: Red, White & Royal Blue

4.5 out of 5 stars

The most fun I’ve ever had wanting to run out and vote. Red, White & Royal Blue, by Casey McQuiston

This book is a fizzy little gem of joy. Alex Cleremont-Diaz, half-Mexican son of the first female President of the United States, is stunned to find himself in luuuurrrrvveeee with his dreamy, previously pseudo-arch nemesis Henry, Prince of Wales. No one knows Henry is gay. Even Alex wasn’t entirely sure Alex was bisexual. Sparks fly, and with them, all secrets are out the window.

This book is funny. There are one liners that had me laughing out loud in public. It’s poignant: Alex and Henry both struggle with far more than the implications of their sexuality – countries to run, factions to please, rules everywhere. It’s smart, too. I don’t read a ton of realistic fiction because the real world is bad enough! But through it’s very timely, almost ripped-from-the-headlines Washington, DC subplot, this book accurately depicts my personal politics in a neat, clean, and very positive way. Ah, positivity. I have missed you, old friend!

Mostly, this story delights by shifting from public to private lives, from contrived to casual, and revealing its heroes (and heroines!) as totally normal. You’d be lucky to have these friends in real life. The flashy, celebrity gossip blood in Red, White & Royal Blue‘s veins only serves to remind that people – of every kind, from every place – are just that: people. And while being young, fun, and in love is plenty, it doesn’t hurt to kick down a few stodgy institutions on your way through.

I finished this book on the patio at a restaurant, sitting alone over a breakfast plate that had been empty for an hour. I kept reading and reading, and laughing – for the last thirty minutes, with tears on my face. The server kept refilling my ice tea and never said a word. When I finally finished, she asked if she could take a picture of the book, so she could read whatever was making me so obviously, spectacularly happy.

Go buy this on Etsy! Shop twosboysarebetter.
Go buy this print on Etsy! Shop: twoboysarebetter. (rollover image for link)

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