The 7 royal reads to keep Prince Charles' coronation party going
Pin up some bunting and grab a Pimm's and lemonade because it's time for coronation day.
For the first time in many of our lifetimes, the UK is crowning a new monarch. King Charles III will go through the formal process of investiture, as he is presented with ceremonial objects and the crown is placed upon his head on May 6.
But whether or not you can make it to Westminster Abbey, if you can't get enough of the royals, here are seven regal reads to keep the Union Jack flying.
American Royalty by Tracey Livesay
Romance novelist Tracey Livesay put her own spin on the Harry and Meghan romance with this tale of a prince who yearns for a life outside of the spotlight and the dazzling American rapper who turns his life upside down. When academic Prince Jameson is cajoled into organizing a tribute concert to the Queen's late husband, he thinks "Duchess" sounds like the perfect choice. Until he discovers that Danielle Nelson is actually a hip-hop artist known for her raunchy vibe. But sparks fly between them in spite of their opposing natures, and Jameson and Dani must contend with what it takes to make a modern monarchy.
Spare by Prince Harry
Need to catch up on the royal drama? Spare is bursting with it, revealing the trials and tribulations of Prince Harry's life. In particular, it lays bare the grievances he has with his family, both for their dealings with his mother, Princess Diana, and with his wife, Meghan Markle, and their children. If you're watching the coronation and wondering where Meghan is or why things seem chilly between Harry and his brother William or Harry and Charles, this book will give you more information than you ever wanted on the subject. But in all seriousness, it's an unguarded, unvarnished look at royal life from a man who desperately wants peace and happiness — and is convinced he can only get it by leaving no stories left untold for the tabloids to twist and dissect.
Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
The coronation marks a historic moment around the world, but McQuiston's debut novel offers up a different take on history (huh?). Alex Claremont-Diaz is feeling the pressure as the son of the first female president of the United States, and that only intensifies when his long-standing feud with England's Prince Henry leads to an international incident. The two make a deal to pretend to be friends for the sake of international relations and damage control, but the more time they spend together, the more they realize they want to be more than friends. This swoony, deeply romantic and modern love story has captured the hearts of many readers, and it's sure to garner even more suitors when the movie version drops on Prime Video in August.
The Heir Affair by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
The bloggers behind fashion and entertainment site Go Fug Yourself made quite the splash with their debut novel, The Royal We, which turned the British royal family into a delicious, irresistible fictionalized rom-com for our enjoyment. But they pushed even further into soapy, page-turning drama with this 2020 sequel. In The Royal We, American Rebecca "Bex" Porter and Prince Nicholas fell head-over-heels for each other, but this follow-up tackles the fallout they experience after a scandalous secret is leaked and threatens to destroy their relationship and the royal family at large. Their attempt at self-imposed exile fails as they then must contend with the wreckage of their lives when they return to reality. The Heir Affair is perfect for those who crave a steaming, hot cup of royal drama with something frothy on top.
Falling Hard for the Royal Guard by Megan Clawson
When 26-year-old Maggie Moore moves into the Tower of London with her beefeater father, she's as done with love as the queens who lost their heads at the same castle. But a chance encounter with royal guard Freddie (yes, he has the big fluffy hat) makes her start to wonder if maybe she gave up on romance too soon. This is as light and airy as a meringue, but it's the perfect complement to the more self-serious proceedings of the coronation.
Coronation Year by Jennifer Robson
Travel back to the previous UK coronation day in 1953 with Jennifer Robson's royal-adjacent historical novel. Edie Howard, owner of the floundering Blue Lion hotel, is hoping the queen's coronation (and her carriage route right past the hotel) can save her from financial ruin. Her path converges with Italian photographer and Holocaust survivor Stella Donati, overwhelmed by Britain's celebratory air, and with war hero James Geddes. Anonymous threats push the three together as they must race to uncover secrets and expose those who could ruin the joyful optimism of the coronation year. Robson never fails to spin a moving historical yarn, and Coronation Year offers up a portrait of a very different era of royal history.
The Quarantine Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot
Need to escape to a fictional principality for the world? Beginning as posts on her website from March to June 2020, the entries in The Quarantine Princess Diaries were crafted to offer readers a distraction from the anxieties of lockdown. Now, Cabot has updated those pieces, as well as written over 200 pages of new content, to give readers the full picture of Mia Thermopolis' struggles to maintain peace and health in Genovia during the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic. The coronation will have plenty of security headaches, but none as amusing as this new entry in Mia's diaries.