In Casey McQuiston’s best-selling debut novel, Red, White & Royal Blue, America’s first son, Alexander Claremont-Diaz, falls in love with the United Kingdom’s Henry, Prince of Wales. They begin as rivals, but with publicity tactics forcing them to become “best buds,” they are confronted with their sexual identities as their friendship blossoms into something more. Their relationship might have been easy if they were just two boys in love, but with the British tabloids spying on them, strict royal expectations about propriety, and an upcoming presidential election in the States, their budding relationship is anything but simple.
Red, White & Royal Blue takes place in the near future, in which Alex’s mom is POTUS and running for re-election. Although set in a political realm, you don’t need to be news savvy to become immersed in this story. McQuiston eases you into this world, explaining all of the British and American government terms in a playful way. She makes the characters relatable, so by the end of the novel, you’ll have cried and laughed with the presidential and royal families.
McQuiston’s novel is a romantic romp that explores LBGTQ issues, politics, social traditions, and love, while also offering laugh-out-loud moments thank’s to the author’s hilarious and witty writing.
There are also hopeful themes laced through the narrative that reflect our current political climate without getting too biased. All sides are represented by the many supporting characters, who feature various sexual orientations, nationalities, and religions. This is the refreshing gay rom-com, and it is bound to reach an even bigger audience when Amazon releases the upcoming TV series based on the book.
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