Author: Melody Carlson
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 5, 2023
Adelaide Smith is too busy for fairy tales. She's been working hard to put herself through law school, and she's determined to stay focused on her goals. Then she receives a letter notifying her that she is a direct descendant of King Maximillian Konig V, the ruler of a small European principality called Montovia.
What? No. That's the stuff of cheesy made-for-TV movies, not real life.
Still, curiosity gets the best of her, leading to a Christmas break trip chock-full of surprises, including a charming village, an opulent palace, family mysteries, royal jealousies, a handsome young member of Parliament, and the chance at a real-life fairy tale romance.
Reviewer: Emily Stephens
Even though it's only September, I'm ready to start thinking about the upcoming holiday season. This made it the perfect time to read A Royal Christmas! Adelaide, a struggling law student, is surprised (and a little skeptical) to learn she is actually the daughter of the king of a small European country. She takes a break from her studies and heads to Montovia to meet her father and discover her new country.
The book follows Adelaide as she moves from skepticism to acceptance to fully embracing her new life. I especially enjoyed the scenes between her and King Max as they got to know each other for the first time.
While billed as a holiday romance, I found that the romance aspect took a backseat to the primary story of a young American facing the fact that she might be the heir apparent to the throne. There is a young man who assists with this, and of course he's handsome and kind. This relationship doesn't really get started until the end of the book, leaving the reader to imagine what happens next.
I also enjoyed the descriptions of holiday customs in the palace and the nearby town. A perfect holiday (or pre-holiday) read!
I received a review copy courtesy of Revell through Interviews & Reviews for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
If you liked The Princess Diaries, then you will probably enjoy A Royal Christmas by Melody Carlson.
The author has taken the basic storyline from The Princess Diaries, where an American girl finds out the father she has never met is royalty, to create a delightful Christmas novella that will keep you glued to the page.
In A Royal Christmas, Adelaide gets to meet her father, who is the King of Montovia. While the Princess Diaries had the parents divorcing, in this story, the parents of Adelaide were engaged to be married, but the king forbade the marriage. Clearly, the woman went home pregnant and kept her secret from her daughter. But that is where the similarities end.
The book plays out like a Hallmark movie made for Christmas and will keep you glued to the pages. I read it in one day. I loved the "wicked" queen, her clueless son, and the handsome politician. Adelaide's determination to become a lawyer was admirable, and her reliance on God for direction was too. I was disappointed the story ended so abruptly, but such is the case with most novellas. I would like to see the story continue further.
If you love Christmas, this is the perfect book to read ahead of the season! I highly recommend it!
I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Revell through NetGalley for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Jeanette Durkin
If you liked the movie "The Princess Diaries," you'll thoroughly enjoy this book! It's almost every girl's dream—to be the daughter of the king! The way Melody Carlson brings the small country of Montovia to life is exquisite. Her detailed descriptions of the town, the rooms in the palace, and Adelaide's clothing are so vivid that I felt as if I was in each place in the town, in each room in the palace, and with Adelaide as she dressed in clothing worthy of a princess.
Adelaide is a wonderful character! She's determined to put herself through law school. She's recently suffered a horrible loss, and she finds out some life-changing news! All of this does not change Adelaide. In fact, it makes her stronger! My favorite character is Anton! He's supportive, compassionate, and loyal.
My favorite quote is "God's plan in God's time." Adelaide's father says it to her, and it's so true.
This really should be made into a Hallmark short film. I will certainly be reading this again—next time with a mug of hot chocolate in front of a fireplace!
I was provided a copy of this book from Revell through Interviews & Reviews. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Tammy Lunsford
I am always drawn to books written by Melody Carlson, especially her Christmas novellas. This book reads like a fairy tale and would make a great Hallmark Christmas movie.
Adelaide Smith is a hard-working American woman working her way through law school. She receives a letter—which she initially thinks is a scam—informing her that King Maximillian V, the ruler of the tiny principality known as Montovia, has requested her presence. According to the letter, she is the daughter of the king. Although she is extremely reluctant to visit Montovia, she feels that she must go.
This was a quick, easy read with a wonderful Christmas spirit. There is an air of mystery that is included in this story as well. The first meeting between Adelaide and her father will bring tears to your eyes. The descriptions of the town bedecked in Christmas finery will make you long for Christmas and twinkly lights. It was a poignant look at love, hope, and missed opportunities. The shared faith of a father and daughter will also make you teary. I closed this book with a smile on my face. If you enjoy a sweet Christmas book, this one will put you in the spirit a few months early.
Thank you to Revell Books for this complimentary copy through Interviews & Reviews. I am leaving this review voluntarily.
Reviewer: Conny Withay
"No-nonsense law student Adelaide Smith doesn’t believe in fairytales," the back jacket states in Melody Carson’s novella, A Royal Christmas.
This one-hundred-and-seventy-six-page advanced reader copy targets those who enjoy a clean contemporary Cinderella romance. Using the word heck once, the topics of illness, abuse, and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending includes the author’s biography and advertisements.
In this tale set mostly in the small fictitious European country of Montovia, Adelaide rushes to the bedside of King Max when she learns he is her father. Although her stepmother and stepbrother clash with the young American infiltrating their palace, the level-headed protagonist is determined to fulfill her parents last wishes. With the help of Anton, the nephew of the prime minister, they do everything in their power to protect the dying king.
I appreciate stories where I learn something, and this one does as it explains a few European Christmas traditions such as Krampus, weihnachtskrippe, and vanillekiferl. The read is not too sappy or believable about a woman who learns she has royal blood. The romance is sweet and not the focus of the story.
Those who do not like Cinderella stories might pass on this one about a princess who makes an important life decision. Some may find the tale predictable, but it does have a twist or two. With God and prayer referenced lightly, some may wish there were more trust in God and the eternal plan of salvation included.
I wish all pronouns for God were capitalized for reverence.
If you like a Christmas story about a princess who learns how the love of family is important, this is a charming and light holiday read.
Thanks to Revell, Interviews & Reviews, and the author for this complimentary book. I am under no obligation to give a positive review.
Reviewer: Monica Huyser
Every year, I look forward to Melody Carlson's Christmas novella. Her newest novella, A Royal Christmas, is quite a bit different than her last few novellas. This book is centered around American law school student Adelaide Smith. Adelaide received a certified letter in the mail inviting her to a small country to visit her real father, King Maximillian V, ruler of a small European country called Montovia. At first, Adelaide thought it was all a joke. Then she discovers it is all real and is soon on a new adventure to meet her father in a country she has never visited before.
For the most part, I really enjoyed A Royal Christmas. It is a happy-feel-good story in many ways. There is some spiritual talk in the book, but it didn't have a faith-filled storyline. I especially enjoyed seeing the relationship with Adelaide and King Max develop. There is a bit of a mystery in the story as to the whereabouts of Max's brother, which added some intrigue.
There is a possible love interest for Adelaide in Anton. I was a bit confused by Anton's behavior towards Adelaide at times. The ending also felt rushed to me. I know it is shorter being a novella, but I still longed for more romance between the two of them. The best part of the book was watching Adelaide and her father forge a good relationship. I think the cover is gorgeous and is a draw for the book as well.
I received a copy of this book from Revell Publishing through Interviews & Reviews for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Trixi Oberembt
Every year, I look forward to Melody Carlson’s Christmas books. I normally wait until about November to start reading them, but I just couldn’t resist this gorgeous cover! Not to mention the book synopsis. A fairy-tale rags-to-riches story? I’m all in for that!
The story was just as engaging as the cover. Adelaide Smith learns she’s actually the long-lost daughter of King Maximillian V and the rightful princess of Montovia. I was hooked from the very beginning and loved watching Adelaide grow into her character. Getting to know the father she never knew she had was heartwarming and bittersweet at the same time. All the magic surrounding a royal Christmas made this story come to life for me. I read this in one sitting and came away with a happy smile on my face. Oh, did I mention there’s a hint of romance? Wait until you meet Anton! I felt the sparks fly from the get-go between these two.
This is a satisfying quick-read story for fans of Melody Carlson and heartwarming family Christmas tales with an underlying romance brewing!
I received a copy courtesy of Revell through Netgalley and was not obligated to leave a favorable review.
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