Majesty by Katharine McGee

GoodReads Summary:
Is America ready for its first queen?
Power is intoxicating. Like first love, it can leave you breathless. Princess Beatrice was born with it. Princess Samantha was born with less. Some, like Nina Gonzalez, are pulled into it. And a few will claw their way in. Ahem, we’re looking at you Daphne Deighton.
As America adjusts to the idea of a queen on the throne, Beatrice grapples with everything she lost when she gained the ultimate crown. Samantha is busy living up to her “party princess” persona…and maybe adding a party prince by her side. Nina is trying to avoid the palace–and Prince Jefferson–at all costs. And a dangerous secret threatens to undo all of Daphne’s carefully laid “marry Prince Jefferson” plans.
A new reign has begun…
Majesty (American Royals, #2)Review:
Majesty wasn’t as dramatic as the first book, but I still enjoyed it. This story follows several characters as their lives change after the events in book one.
Beatrice is now the Queen of America. She faces unexpected hurdles and also finds some happy surprises. There are challenges to being the first Queen, certain people are purposefully getting in her way and undermining her. It takes her a while, but she finally stands up and stops letting others tell her what she should or shouldn’t be doing. I really liked seeing Beatrice figure out how to be the Queen she wanted, to be what her father would have wanted her to be. I also really liked seeing Beatrice fall in love. I was really happy about how Beatrice and Teddy’s relationship developed. I enjoyed seeing them become better friends and then gain stronger feelings. I also like how everything happened with the wedding (I won’t say more because of spoilers).
Now Samantha is my favorite. She ends up fake dating a guy that’s actually mostly acceptable for her to date. It starts with both Samantha and Marshall fake dating to make their ex’s jealous, but somewhere in there, they realize that they like one another and they don’t want to pretend anymore. This was my favorite romance. Marshall is a part of the nobility, but he is also black. I liked that this was addressed. It’s acknowledged that slavery still existed, but I think there should have been more to this part of the conversation. I liked Samantha and Marshall’s relationship but I wanted more of it.
The author did Nina dirty. I understand why her storyline was like this. Nina has wanted to get out of the spotlight. She wanted to get back to her regular college life and stay out of the tabloids. That’s one of the big reasons that she and Jefferson broke up. But her chapters were boring and her break up with Jefferson really affected her friendship with Samantha and that was upsetting. Some of the best parts of Nina’s story were her adventures with Samantha. I was just bored with her story this time.
Daphne is still terrible. She’s still trying to win Jefferson back. But she also still shows these moments where it’s clear she just doesn’t want to do any of this anymore. There’s so much pressure from her mom. When she regains a friend from the past, I really thought things were going to change with her, but they didn’t. I just think she could have ended better and that didn’t happen. Daphne is just painted as a villain with no growth.
Overall, this was an entertaining read with some parts that I liked and others that I didn’t. I’ve read that this is the final book and I’m very unhappy about that. The ending of this book was not a strong series ending. Too many things were left open, leaving the reader thinking that more will be coming.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

American Royals by Katharine McGee

GoodReads Summary:
What if America had a royal family?
When America won the Revolutionary War, its people offered General George Washington a crown. Two and a half centuries later, the House of Washington still sits on the throne.
As Princess Beatrice gets closer to becoming America’s first queen regnant, the duty she has embraced her entire life suddenly feels stifling. Nobody cares about the spare except when she’s breaking the rules, so Princess Samantha doesn’t care much about anything, either . . . except the one boy who is distinctly off-limits to her. And then there’s Samantha’s twin, Prince Jefferson. If he’d been born a generation earlier, he would have stood first in line for the throne, but the new laws of succession make him third. Most of America adores their devastatingly handsome prince . . . but two very different girls are vying to capture his heart.
American Royals (American Royals, #1)Review:
American Royals was such a fun story to read. I was expecting something a little different, but I loved the story anyway. McGee really succeeds in pulling me into the story and getting me invested in her characters. We follow four different perspectives. Four different love stories, sort of.
First, there’s Beatrice. She’s the firstborn, the heir to the throne, and the first-ever Queen of America. The expectations of her role weigh heavily upon her shoulders, but she handles them with grace. She loves someone she can never marry. And gets engaged to someone perfectly suitable. I really enjoyed seeing the struggle between her duty to her country and following her heart. We were given a beautiful view of the heir to the throne and what really makes her who she is. She was just a girl, a girl who was destined to be the leader of her country.
Next, is her younger sister, Samantha. Sam sees herself as the spare. A girl with no use. It’s very interesting to see how Sam wanted to matter like Beatrice does, but Beatrice wanted to be as free as Sam was. I didn’t love Sam’s choice of love interest. It seemed a bit insta-lovey and I just didn’t care. I wanted her to get over it and move on. I loved Sam’s relationship with her twin brother, Jefferson. They were as close as siblings to get and I loved it. But I didn’t totally understand why they excluded Beatrice.
Jefferson, or Jeff, recently broke up with his girlfriend of three years, Daphne (who is perspective number three. Jeff was a bit shallow in the sense of his motivations and goals. He’s going to go to college but what he wants to do is never really explained. He seemed more there to be Sam’s brother and to be a love interest to various characters. I liked him anyway. He was kind and thoughtful and willing to fight for what he wanted.
Daphne was more or less a villain. I couldn’t help but like her. She was devious and manipulative, but endlessly clever. She knew just what to do to get what she wanted. I really hope she gets away from the expectations of her parents in the next book and chooses to do what makes her happy instead of what they want her to do.
Finally, there’s Nina. Nina is Sam’s best friend. She is the second girl vying for his heart. I really liked Nina. She was our sense of normal in all the royal shenanigans. She goes to college and lives in a dorm, but her life is turned upside down when the press catches her and Jefferson together. I wish she’d been a little less concerned about what the world would think of her and how they wouldn’t approve of her being with Jefferson. Her insecurity was a little annoying because she would be over it and determined to make things work with Jeff and then a few chapters later she’d let everything get to her again. I still really liked her though.
Overall, this book seems to be hit or miss with most people. After reading reviews on GoodReads, I completely agree that this read like a royal soap opera. That’s exactly what it was. Days of Our Lives except with Royals if America had been a monarch instead of the Republic that it is. I would have liked a bit more history of the world, to see what else had changed because of this big difference in government. I hope the sequel gets more into it with the changes that are coming because of the way this book ended. I really enjoyed this book. It was fun and goofy, but also suspenseful and dramatic. I definitely will be continuing the series.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

The Thousandth​ Floor by Katharine McGee

Summary:
New York City as you’ve never seen it before. A thousand-story tower stretching into the sky. A glittering vision of the future, where anything is possible—if you want it enough.
Welcome to Manhattan, 2118.
A hundred years in the future, New York is a city of innovation and dreams. But people never change: everyone here wants something…and everyone has something to lose.
Leda Cole’s flawless exterior belies a secret addiction—to a drug she never should have tried and a boy she never should have touched.
Eris Dodd-Radson’s beautiful, carefree life falls to pieces when a heartbreaking betrayal tears her family apart.
Rylin Myers’s job on one of the highest floors sweeps her into a world—and a romance—she never imagined…but will her new life cost Rylin her old one?
Watt Bakradi is a tech genius with a secret: he knows everything about everyone. But when he’s hired to spy by an upper-floor girl, he finds himself caught up in a complicated web of lies.
And living above everyone else on the thousandth floor is Avery Fuller, the girl genetically designed to be perfect. The girl who seems to have it all—yet is tormented by the one thing she can never have.
Debut author Katharine McGee has created a breathtakingly original series filled with high-tech luxury and futuristic glamour, where the impossible feels just within reach. But in this world, the higher you go, the farther there is to fall….
The Thousandth FloorReview:
I was really excited by the premise of this story. Gossip Girl but in the future? Sign me up. Sadly, all we got was the bitchiness of rich girls, a little bit of racism, and not nearly enough of the few things I did like.
The world-building was not great. I wanted more of it. We got to see a little bit of the layout of the Tower, but I wanted more. I wanted to know why they created the Tower, why and how technology developed. Just more.
The characters were also not great. Only one had some great promise and she was killed off. I don’t want to go into too much detail because I just don’t care enough to go into all the things I liked or didn’t. The majority of them were shallow and cared entirely too much the number of the floor they lived on. They all cared too much what everyone else thought. They all flaunt their drinking, partying, and drug use too much. None of their friendships were even halfway real. There was also a pretty uncomfortable relationship between a girl and her adopted brother. I get that they’re not related by blood, but a sibling is a sibling.
There was a fairly diverse cast of characters, but the wealthy ones were white and the poor ones were not. And the one not white wealthy character was addicted to drugs.
This was just all around not well executed. I wanted so many things from this story but I didn’t really get any of them. I have heard the next one is better, but I’m not sure I care enough to continue the story.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.