We’re celebrating People of Color in romance and offering you a chance to discover new books and new authors, as well as giving you a chance to win prizes. We have 30 blogs participating this year, each featuring an interracial or multicultural romance book!
This year, we’re doing things a little differently. We’ve separated the cash and book prizes so more people can win:
One lucky visitor to my blog will win digital copies of three great reads by three great authors!
Once Upon a Princess Duet by Deborah A. Bailey
Cinderella and the Wolf Prince by Siren Allen
Haunted by Kiru Taye
To enter for a chance to win, all you have to do is:
- Follow this blog
- What’s your favorite multicultural/interracial read of 2017? Tell me in the comments!
On Monday, December 4th, a random winner will be chosen and receive all three books!
My 5-Star Review of Once Upon a Princess Duet
Fairytales were my first favorite childhood genre, and in my later years, I haven’t strayed too far from them. The list continues to grow of fairytale mash-ups, retellings, dark, and inspired versions. A few missed the mark, but most get it right. Once Upon a Princess Duet nails it!
In Heart of Stone, we have Leesa, princess leader of a kingdom in ruins. Those who killed her family and destroyed the land are gone too. Leesa ekes out a living for her grandmother and the people of her village the best way she can.
This leads Leesa to search for treasures at Silver Palace, also in ruins and once home to her betrothed who never returned from the war.
Leesa is caught by Willem, the gargoyle, self-proclaimed guardian of the castle ruins. He makes Leesa an offer—stay with him in the castle for three weeks and he will give her all she needs to care for her village.
This grownup version of Beauty & the Beast doesn’t deliver a wide-eyed, naïve ingenue and a loathsome beast, but a thirty-year-old woman who’s left her days of royalty and privilege behind and a snarky, supernatural creature who may or may not be just a bit pervy. *HA! *
The bargain is not an easy one even as a guarded trust grows between the mismatched couple.
Trouble arrives in the forms of Lester and Sir Kyle, who’s determined to take the castle’s hidden riches… and Leesa as his wife.
With problems temporarily abated, Willem releases Leesa from their agreement, insisting she leaves before the nefarious Kyle returns with backup. Leesa is reluctant to leave—she has come to care for the gargoyle—and wants to fulfill her part of the agreement… and perhaps even help free Willem from the enchantment which binds him to the castle.
Trouble returns, and it is chaotic. Leesa’s resolve weakens as she believes she’s lost someone else important to her. It builds to an excellent ending, which for me, could have gone on and on.
While she only appears in a few pages near story’s end, Polly, a no-nonsense barmaid from town, leaps to the top of my favorite characters list. Polly wasn’t up for any foolishness and did not suffer fools lightly.
In Beauty and the Faun, Kayla and her mother are taken in by her uncle after Kayla’s father dies.
Although they are equals, Kayla and Julia, her mother, are treated as servants…like Cinderella. The good-natured women don’t mind… much, as they both miss their life living in the woods with Christopher, Kayla’s late father.
When Julia fell in love with Christopher, a woodsman, her family didn’t consider him good enough for Julia and she had to choose—her wealthy family and easy life or poverty with Christopher. Of course, Julia chose love with no regrets. But illness took Christopher all too soon.
Now Kayla learns Sir Frederick, her uncle, and a habitual gambler is ready to marry her off to help settle his gambling debts.
The plan is to marry Kayla off to the son of a king. Usually a coveted betrothal, King Reynard has been unable to find a bride for his son because Reynard is a wolf-shapeshifter and his son… changes into things. The young prince is also said to be wild and disappears for weeks at a time.
Despite Kayla and Julia’s objections, the wedding plans proceed, so Kayla decides to solve her own problem.
Striking a deal with fellow servant, Jackon, Kayla plans to go into the village and find a job so she can take care of her mother and be away from Frederick’s control. Jackon tricks Kayla and leads her into an attempted kidnapping. Kayla escapes and eventually ends up with Del, a woodland faun.
Loved the twists and turns of this quick read which included a wedding ball, a fairy godmother and… pomegranate.
Leesa and Kayla are two great characters—women just trying to figure it all out. They’re not sitting around waiting to be rescued, but Prince Charming does arrive… in his own way! You’ll enjoy rooting for their happily-ever-afters.
I highly recommend these two engaging fairytale sendups. But, don’t buy them for your twelve-year-old. Yes, there’s sex, (but it’s not over-the-top). We grow up, why can’t our fairytales?