winter renshaw royal

Author: Winter Renshaw
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Published: February 23rd, 2016
Pages: 392
My Rating: 
His name is Royal, but he’s no prince charming. He’s not even a prince - though you could say I loved him once upon a time. He was my older brother’s best friend. Growing up, he sat at our dinner table every Sunday, teased me mercilessly, and pretended I annoyed him. When I was old enough, he took me on my first date. Royal taught me how to drive. Escorted me to my junior prom. Gave me my first kiss…amongst other things. He was my first taste of toe-curling, all-consuming, can’t-sleep love. We had our whole lives ahead of us. There was never anyone else for me but him. And then he disappeared. No letter. No explanation. Not even a goodbye. My sisters and brother never forgave him, and my parents forbade me from speaking his name in our house ever again. For all intents and purposes, we were to pretend Royal Lockhart never existed. I’ve spent the last seven years trying in vain to forget my first love, but just when I think I’ve finally moved on, guess who’s back in town?
A girl gets a second chance at a long lost love.
Royal is a novel about a second chance at love. The book follows a forbidden love story. I love forbidden love stories. The main heroine is Demi and from a young age, she fell in love with her brother's best friend Royal. Royal has anything but a normal life. He is constantly being sent from different foster homes and has a very difficult upbringing. 

Demi and Royal are destined to fall for each other from the very beginning. The book is told from two perspectives. I loved how the book alternated from the past to the present. We do not figure out why Royal and Demi drift apart until almost the end of the book. Eventually, they end up finding their way back to one another but of course, old wounds have to be healed. Royal disappears from Demi's life one day and we have no idea why. Demi does not receive an explanation and moves on. 

Almost when Demi is about to get married to another man is when Royal mysteriously shows up at Demi's door. Old passion resurfaces and they begin to rekindle their relationship. Royal left not just Demi but his best friend, Demi's brother in the process too. Royal has a lot of lost time to make up for and an explanation as to why he left. 

I wish more of the past was shown in the book. The book focused more on the present relationship between the two but I wanted to see more of how both Demi and Royal fell in love. Only briefly do we see the two in the past. This is one love story that has a lot of tension that could have been avoided with better communication. I was so mad at Royal disappearing! All of their drama could have easily been avoided. 

Demi's family annoyed me. Especially, her father. He made Royal never speak to her again. All in all, Royal is about forgiveness and moving on. Royal is a sweetheart and I felt for him and his story so much. I could not believe that Demi's family was so easy to turn on Royal. If you really care about someone then you should not be so easy to not trust someone. Royal deserved the benefit of the doubt. At least, the story wrapped up in a good way. I just wanted something more with this story. 

All in all, the plot was pretty fast-paced and I enjoyed the author's writing. I don't know if I will be continuing with the series though. I wasn't enamored with any of the characters really. Demi was frustrating at times and barely stood up for herself. I wish I would have seen more growth with her character. The ending did seem rushed and I wanted more. Overall, I enjoyed seeing the main character Demi being conflicted over her long lost love. First loves are something so powerful in themselves that I can't just help but be drawn to.

Wall Street Journal and #1 Amazon bestselling author Winter Renshaw is a bona fide daydream believer. She lives somewhere in the middle of the USA and can rarely be seen without her trusty Mead notebook and ultra portable laptop. When she’s not writing, she’s living the American dream with her husband, three kids, and the laziest puggle this side of the Mississippi.