The Mud and Stars Book Blog

thoughts from a girl who spends her days in other worlds…

My review of Royal Wedding by Meg Cabot… AKA my favourite nostalgia trip of the year :)

on September 1, 2015

B-9El-RVAAA8_bVRoyal Wedding. Meg Cabot. Macmillan. July 2015.

For Princess Mia, the past five years since college graduation have been a whirlwind of activity, what with living in New York City, running her new teen community centre, being madly in love, and attending royal engagements. And speaking of engagements, Mia’s gorgeous longtime boyfriend Michael managed to clear both their schedules just long enough for an exotic (and very private) Caribbean island interlude where he popped the question! Of course Mia didn’t need to consult her diary to know that her answer was a royal oui.

But now Mia has a scandal of majestic proportions to contend with: Her grandmother’s leaked “fake” wedding plans to the press that could cause even normally calm Michael to become a runaway groom. Worse, a scheming politico is trying to force Mia’s father from the throne, all because of a royal secret that could leave Genovia without a monarch. Can Mia prove to everyone – especially herself – that she’s not only ready to wed, but ready to rule as well?

Up until a week ago, I hadn’t even realised a new Princess Diaries book was coming out (I know, I know, I’ve been living under a rock/squashed underneath Fat Louie’s gargantuan fluffy belly, or something…), but I was so excited when I found out that, let’s just say, unprecedented levels of squee occurred!

The Princess Diaries was my favourite book series growing up, and the first one I can remember getting thoroughly obsessed with. Michael Moscovitz (a love interest who was both ridiculously hot AND ridiculously intelligent) also happened to be my very first book-crush, so that may have had a little something to do with it…

It’s not really a spoiler (because duh if you don’t get the hint from the title and blurb) to say that Mia gets engaged to Michael in this book. It was lovely to see how their relationship has matured and changed over the years (though the fact that Michael still calls her ‘Thermopolis’, like in the good old days, was just the most perfect thing.)  The proposal was as adorable and Michael-like as you would expect (yep, I may as well admit, my feelings for him never truly went away…), but there were also a million more things to love about this book.

Royal Wedding was released for the adult market (by adult, I’m not talking Fifty Shades of Princess, I just mean not-YA…), which I think may have been why I missed it initially, but I guess this makes sense, as Mia turns 26 in the novel, and most people who read the original books when they first came out will be roughly the same age now, give or take a couple of years.

Reading this book was the fictional equivalent of catching up with a group of friends you’ve known your whole life and, even though you haven’t seen each other in a long time and you’re all up to different things now, the minute you get together it’s like no time has passed, and you still find each other as comfortable to be around, and as roll-on-the-floor-hilarious as you did the day you met. One of my favourite things about Royal Wedding was the fact that, 8 years on, Mia’s friendships have outlasted the end of high school, and we therefore get to see what everyone’s been up to and how they’ve changed and/or stayed the same since we last visited them.

I loved that Mia has remained close to Lilly and Tina (who are now in Law and Med school, respectively), as I always felt their friendships were excellently portrayed throughout the series. These two haven’t changed all that much, which was reassuring to see. Lilly was still as fabulously opinionated and smart (although a lot more sexually aware, and of course, outspoken than she was in high school… she’s totally – graphically – lusting over Lars, Mia’s bodyguard, these days…), and Tina was still as sensitive, intuitive and loyal as ever (and still way into her Romance novels!)


Disney / via Giphy

Mia herself has changed in subtle ways… she’s still passionate about making a difference, but as she’s grown into the duties of being a Princess, she’s learned even more how to use her position for positive change. Mia is not afraid to express how she feels about injustice, and it’s interesting to see her speaking out and urging Genovia to take a more compassionate stance towards refugees (which is so relevant and applicable outside of fiction right now).

One way Mia has definitely changed is that she’s much more accepting of a) the fact that she’s a Princess, and b) everything that encompasses. She struggles with having to hide out in the Genovian Consulate to escape the paparazzi (and political protestors throwing Genovian oranges at her because they don’t support her dad’s campaign to be Prime Minister), but all in all she’s a little less outwardly resistant about having to attend functions, wear fancy clothes (which never really felt right to her before), and generally having a hectic and 1000-miles-from-normal life.  That’s not to say she isn’t stressed though. She has a twitchy eye thing going on, which she’s convinced means something is very, very wrong.

The most hilarious character transformation has got to be Boris Pelkowski, who has grown into some kind of sexy international popstar, with a Directioner-style fangirl following (‘the Borettes’). In case y’all don’t remember, Boris is the mouth-breathing, sweater-into-pants-tucking guy Mia and her friends used to lock in the closet back in high school, so they didn’t have to listen to his terrible screechy violin playing! FYI, in the movie, they scrapped his character, and replaced him with this random boy who makes coins appear from behind people’s ears…


Disney / via Buzzfeed

Some things never change, and Mia’s Grandmère and her beloved poodle sidekick Rommel are still one of my all time favourite things about The Princess Diaries. I will always have a soft spot for the film adaptation, but I do find the Disneyfication of Clarisse Renaldo hilariously inaccurate; the Dowager Princess is supposed to be this crotchety old French-speaking Genovian lady with permanently-tattooed eyeliner, who drinks and chain-smokes more than Bridget Jones, and has the most unappealing sounding dog in all of literary history… In other words, she’s the least Julie-Andrews-like person you can possibly imagine.

giphy (1)

Disney / via Giphy

Grandmère and Rommel are back on form in Royal Wedding, and honestly every scene they were in made me crack up laughing (an unfortunate reaction which for some reason always seems to plague me when I’m reading on public transport), particularly Rommel’s humping of everything and everyone (which Mia describes as ‘somewhat aggressive love-making’). This, however, was one of my favourite Grandmère anecdotes:

“The worst decision we ever made was allowing my grandmother to have access to the Internet (although she adores commenting anonymously. She is the worst troll ever. No one on or Reddit knows that the Dowager Princess of Genovia is the person making all the mean comments about how the fat children just need to use more self-control and they’ll lose weight.”

This was a light, funny, character-driven read, with some interesting twists along the way, ending in the most anticipated Royal Wedding since we all had a public holiday in the UK courtesy of Wills and Kate. For everyone who adored this series when they were a teenager, Royal Wedding is one nostalgia trip you absolutely must take!


2 responses to “My review of Royal Wedding by Meg Cabot… AKA my favourite nostalgia trip of the year :)

  1. Sourin says:

    Nice review, I enjoyed the troll comment at the end.

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