I received a copy of this book for free from the publisher (Flatiroin exchange for an honest review.
This was such a cute read!
The premise is everything. A Japanese American girl discovering she is a princess? Yes please! As a whole, I thought the premise was well executed. There was a good balance between the humorous adjusting to royal parts and the more serious discovering who she is parts.
I really liked that the book included a family tree with a brief description of everyone in the family. It made the book so easy to follow.
Character-wise, I loved Izumi’s all Asian friend group (nicknamed Asian Girl Gang, or AGG for short). It was so nice seeing a female lead with a large friend group to support her. Also, one of her friends was half-Filipino just like me. I always love seeing Filipino representation in books, even if it’s just a small side character.
I also enjoyed the writing style. It was engaging and flowed well.
The Own Voices aspect was also really strong, especially in regards to feeling like a foreigner. The book highlighted how visiting Japan while being Japanese American feels strange since she’s not “Japanese” enough. That is so true. Being American is an added layer of identity and affects how others perceive you. I’m Filipino American and there is a difference in how people in the Philippines view you if you’re American born versus Philippines born.
However, the book is on the predictable side. If you’re familiar with the lost royalty trope or have seen The Princess Diaries movies, then a lot of the plot points are nothing new.
Additionally, the romance in this book is a little insta-lovey. I felt like the book didn’t even need a romance sub-plot; it was already strong on its own.
Overall, I throughly enjoyed this Own Voices take on lost royalty! I recommend it if you love stories about royal families.
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