Format: .epub (purchased)
Release Date: January 31, 2012
Thanks to the mischievous meddling of his matchmaking sister, Ashton Wilde meets a damsel in distress during the midnight magic of a lavish ball. But Maura Collyer isn’t looking for a prince—or an intimate pairing with any member of the scandalous noble Wilde family.
Intrigued by Maura’s beauty and daring, Ash is determined to aid in the rescue of her beloved stallion, gambled away by her wicked stepmother to an evil viscount. As their adventure becomes rife with peril and passion, Ash suspects he’s found his heart’s desire.
Even though her dearest friend may be her self-proclaimed fairy godmother, Maura is mortified at being pushed into a romance with a notorious rake such as Ash. Dashing and charming, he comes to Maura’s rescue just in time to help her steal back her precious horse. As they flee across the countryside, she can’t resist his sweet seduction. But is her prince playing a role in a fairy tale to test an improbable theory, or is the love awakening in her heart proof of her own happily ever after?
Almost every romance novel is a fairytale. But what if one of the novel's main characters believed that she, her siblings and her cousins would be able to find their true match by imitating some of the most famous lovers of all time?
That's exactly what happens in the first book of an all new series by author Nicole Jordan. Princess Charming introduces readers to the Wilde clan, a group of cousins who have banded together after the deaths of their respective parents. Katherine Wilde has a theory that each of the Wilde cousins can find true and everlasting love by using history's legendary lovers as guides. According to her theory, her oldest brother Ash's tale is Cinderella, with Ash as Prince Charming and Kate's dearest friend Maura as Cinderella.
Aside from an evil stepmother and step sisters, there are no obvious similarities to the popular fairy tale and this book. For starters, Princess Charming is much more appealing simply because Maura is no wilting female singing and waiting to be rescued. Her beloved horse has been wrongfully sold and she will stop at nothing to get him back. She may be a Regency heroine but she can definitely discourage unwanted advances from men! She's stubborn and independent, they type of heroine that makes a romance novel interesting and fun.
Ash is not the typical Regency hero I've grown used to reading about. He's not overly cocky, he doesn't have hordes of women trailing after him, and family is his most important duty. He has a patience that was obviously developed through being the oldest of the Wilde cousins. Ash is a strong enough hero to match Maura's stubbornness and help her defeat the enemy, but he's not overbearing to where he crushes Maura's spirit or dilutes her personality. They were a wonderful match and their verbal sparring continually brought a smile to my face.
Ash and Maura's love story is passionate, with Maura being the more reluctant of the two, it's Ash that has to convince her that there's more to life than living in the middle of nowhere with her horses. Not to be outdone is the Wilde clan. They're loud, argumentative and staunchly loyal to one another. Their dynamic was quite entertaining and I look forward to seeing them all together for a few scenes in the next book.
My only sore point was Katherine, or Kate's insistence about her theory. She is the one who thought up the legendary lovers theory but she was far too obvious and pushy about it. Her meddling could have easily backfired in a major way. Normally scheming family members do not bother me but Kate interfered far too much and always with the same childish stubbornness. She was obsessed with her theory and expects every one to fall in line with what she says. A little more subtlety on her part would have been better received and painted her as an intelligent, sneaky young woman instead of a petulant child. Hopefully she won't have so many scenes in the upcoming books if she's going to continue with the same behavior. However, when she wasn't pushing her theory on any one, she was a delight.
Princess Charming is a delightful, passionate romance and a great start to a new series by an author I consider one of my "Must Haves." I cannot wait to see what Nicole Jordan has in store for the rest of the Wilde cousins.