Release Day Review- This Vicious Grace / American Royalty

Netgalley adding audiobooks has been a gamechanger for me in terms of reading ARCs. So I thought I would start posting release day reviews of ARCs I have read in an attempt to bring them some attention!

Three weddings. Three funerals. Alessa’s gift from the gods is supposed to magnify a partner’s magic, not kill every suitor she touches.

Now, with only weeks left until a hungry swarm of demons devours everything on her island home, Alessa is running out of time to find a partner and stop the invasion. When a powerful priest convinces the faithful that killing Alessa is the island’s only hope, her own soldiers try to assassinate her.

Desperate to survive, Alessa hires Dante, a cynical outcast marked as a killer, to become her personal bodyguard. But as rebellion explodes outside the gates, Dante’s dark secrets may be the biggest betrayal. He holds the key to her survival and her heart, but is he the one person who can help her master her gift or destroy her once and for all?

Emily Thiede’s exciting fantasy debut, This Vicious Grace, will keep readers turning the pages until the devastating conclusion and leave them primed for more!

Why did I love This Vicious Grace more than I ever expected to!? The trope of “her touch kills” may seem cliché, but I loved this fresh take on it. The magic and world and politics all made complete sense to me and were explored in a way that felt realistic. I found myself entirely immersed in this story and this world.

I was here for this bodyguard romance! The slow burn was perfection and the banter was everything. This book has my favourite trope ever- found family- and I loved the way it was handled. So sweet! There was a lot of action as well. A perfect balance of romance, friendship, and politics.

I loved this on audio. I would listen to it any chance that I got. I also loved the way it ended. It set us up for a sequel but didn’t feel like a cliffhanger. I cannot wait for the next book in this series, and I don’t say that often!

Sexy, driven rapper Danielle “Duchess” Nelson is on the verge of signing a deal that’ll make her one of the richest women in hip hop. More importantly, it’ll grant her control over her life, something she’s craved for years. But an incident with a rising pop star has gone viral, unfairly putting her deal in jeopardy. Concerned about her image, she’s instructed to work on generating some positive publicity… or else.

A brilliant professor and reclusive royal, Prince Jameson prefers life out of the spotlight, only leaving his ivory tower to attend weddings or funerals. But with the Queen’s children involved in one scandal after another, and Parliament questioning the viability of the monarchy, the Queen is desperate. In a quest for good press, she puts Jameson in charge of a tribute concert in her late husband’s honor. Out of his depth, and resentful of being called to service, he takes the advice of a student. After all, what’s more appropriate for a royal concert than a performer named “Duchess”?

Too late, Jameson discovers the American rapper is popular, sexy, raunchy and not what the Queen wanted, although he’s having an entirely different reaction. Dani knows this is the good exposure she needs to cement her deal and it doesn’t hurt that the royal running things is fine as hell. Thrown together, they give in to the explosive attraction flaring between them. But as the glare of the limelight intensifies and outside forces try to interfere, will the Prince and Duchess be a fairy tale romance for the ages or a disaster of palatial proportions?

I am always wary about books that are inspired by real people and real relationships, but American Royalty is so loosely based on Harry and Meghan that it was easy for me to forget about that comparison and just enjoy the story for what it is.

I came to the realization earlier this year that I prefer romances that are dual perspective, so I was so happy to see that we received both Danielle and Jameson’s POVs in this story. Though, I will admit that I much preferred hearing about Dani and her passions. I could have read an entire novel that just follows her and her career. I was especially interested in her skincare line. I am someone who is intrigued by novels that follow celebrities and the fact that Dani is also a rapper was fascinating. I loved all the behind-the-scenes of what goes into making a music video and the pressure that Dani faces from everyone involved. I also like the exploration of social media and fame. On the other hand, Jameson’s perspective wasn’t as intriguing to me. I just don’t think I care about the ins and outs of the royal family that much! The family drama was fine, if not a little over the top, but I was more curious about his life as a professor.

While some might argue that American Royalty has the love-at-first-sight trope, I would argue that it is more lust-at-first-sight. Dani and Jameson are immediately attracted to one another, but they butt heads. I actually thought that Jameson came across as a huge jerk, but that’s just me. The romance ends up being a bit of a whirlwind and I kind of want a follow-up of how this relationship withstands all the pressures and obstacles they are bound to face.

Is either of these new releases on your TBR?

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19 thoughts on “Release Day Review- This Vicious Grace / American Royalty


  2. I’m so glad we both loved This Vicious Grace! I actually had a chance to meet the author this past weekend at ALA and she’s so sweet! I told her I already can’t wait for the sequel LOL!

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