Saturday, May 14, 2011

Book Review: The Royal Treatment by Lindsey Leavitt

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The Royal Treatment by Lindsey Leavitt
Release Date: May 3, 2011
Publisher: Disney Hyperion 

Pages: 272
Received: ARC from NetGalley/Publisher
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 
Series: #2
Goodreads Page

This is a  MOSTLY SPOILER FREE post!
You may see a few teeny tiny spoilers for the first book, Princess for Hire.


From Goodreads:

Desi Bascomb's job as a princess substitute has gotten a whole lot more glamorous now that she's advanced to Level 2 within the Facade Agency. Magical make-up, roller-skating celebrities, and the chance to see Prince Karl again are just some of the major perks. Life should be perfect, but Desi can't seem to shake the feeling that there is more going on with the agency's magic than she's told. Like why is this mind-bending power exclusive to royals? Is it possible that there could be a bigger way to make an impact in both parts of her life?



Ok, so here’s the thing: Desi? I didn’t like her all that much in Princess for Hire. She was ok, but her bratty “I’m going to impact the princesses’ lives and consequences be damned!” kick was really starting to bug me. I mean, ok, maybe I’m an old fogey, but I just wanted her to buckle down and listen to her elders because it was only through the grace of author convenience that Desi managed to not only get away with her antics scott free, but she also had the exact desired consequence happen every time when these consequences were so not the likely result.

But, whatever, the story overall was great and the last time I fell this hard for a pink sparkly world was when I begged my parents for Barbie’s Dream House and the My Little Pony castle (I got the Dream House, but no dice on the castle. Freaking Santa. Choose one? What do you think the giant sack is for??)

The world it is a changin’

Ahem, where was I? Oh, right, the pink sparkly world. That world just got even more awesome in The Royal Treatment. I’m talking promotions, and ya know what that means? A gift basket of designer clothes, a royal suite bubble, and makeup that can turn you into Mary Poppins, for starters. How freaking cool is that? Mary Poppins might seem like a super prim choice, but I would totally rock that carpet bag (do you have any idea how many books I could pack in that thing?)

But that agency has some secrets behind all that glitter and rouge and, you know, I’m totally dying to find out all about those secrets. Unlike Desi, I really don’t care about learning more so I can set right any wrongs. My desire is fueled purely by the urge to snoop and gossip. Have you ever read a gossip magazine and even though a part of you knows you should be doing something more worthwhile with your time, a louder part of you just wants to gush and gasp over celebrity scandals? That’s totally how I feel. Desi can handle the altruism. I just want to vicariously play with magic makeup and learn juicy secrets.

Ok, ok, I’m not totally shallow

Yeah, whatever, I kind of am, but Desi isn’t and her desire to do good deeds was admirable. In the first book I liked her idea of helping the royals, but I really didn’t love her approach. But now? She’s so much better. I would totally let her sit at my lunch table now. She’s still all about the impacting, which, really, it’s a pretty honorable goal, but she’s finally learned to consider the consequences of her actions. Hallelujah! There’s even this one part where she gets to experience a taste of her own medicine from book one. I admit, I may have been delighting in her frustration just a little bit. Ok, ok, I was practically gloating, but it looks like Desi’s learned her lessons now. I’m so proud of her.

Even more win

I can’t not mention Meredith. Meredith is Desi’s agent and she is made of win. She was so cool in the first book and her awesomeness just rose even higher in book two. I guess falling in love really can improve a person. I miss her power suits though. Plus, there was this totally epic snipe-fest between Meredith and a real witch of an agent, aptly named Lilith. Meredith lobbed some blows that would make the cafeteria cry “oooooh you just got owned!” Bottom line: Meredith = Awesome.

The romance kicked up a notch, but it’s still totally PG. Things are of the “Too perfect to be real” variety, but I’m not complaining. It’s cute and sweet and it makes me smile. Who needs reality? We also get to see a lot more of Desi’s regular life and I have to say, I was almost as enthralled with her school play as I was with her princess subbing.

Please let there be another book (soon!)

Like the first book, The Royal Treatment ends neatly. There are a few things left open to be explored in a sequel, but all of the main plot points have been resolved. You really should read Princess for Hire first because events from that book are referenced frequently enough here that it would spoil the first book for you.

I highly recommend this book, especially if you’re looking for something reminiscent of a Disney movie with a light and sweet tone and a cute message. Even though the story wrapped up nicely, I’m dying to read the next book (please, please let there be a next book!) because I want to dive back into the world of princess subbing.

 Explanation of rating system: Star Rating Key 

This book satisfies the following challenges: 

Want to read my review of the first book? 
Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt


  1. I love Disney princesses and fluffy books, especially as I've been reading some disappointing books recently, and I cannot wait to read the first book and then hopefully this one soon. I'm also glad to read that it improved on the first since sequels have a reputation of being sometimes lesser.

  2. This one is total Disney. I still can't believe it isn't a Disney movie. Sorry to hear you've been reading disappointing books lately. That's a bummer. This series totally avoided the sequel slump!

  3. Loved the tone of this review :) I'm going to save reading this for when I'm mega-stressed so that I can have a nice, cute, easy to read book. I may have to brush up on Princess for Hire again though since I read it last year and can't really remember much.

  4. I just finished this one too and I'm posting my review tomorrow.

    I agree with you, over all. Desi was a bit trying at times during Princess for Hire but I can see she's growing up a bit in this one so I was glad.

    And Meredith! OMG!! You know what I mean! Plus, loved the twist.

  5. A Canadian Girl, This would be a good book to read hwen you’re stressed. Perfectly light and fluffy. You do need to remember at least the basics of Princess for Hire though, like Meredith’s secret and Desi’s crush.

    Alex, Yes!!! Meredith!!! :D See, she gets better, right? But I want her to wear her power suits again. I also so want her new bubble. I love Desi's twist, too. I can't wait to read your review!


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