Friday, February 28, 2014

Blog Tour & Review :: Princess Ever After by Rachel Hauck

Title: Princess Ever After
Author: Rachel Hauck
Publisher: Zondervan (Feb 2014)

Source: Received from publisher via LitFuse Publicity Group

Purchase a copy and learn more at Rachel’s website.
About the Book:
A Royal Wedding Book

Regina Beswick was born to be a princess.

But she’s content to be a small-town girl, running a classic auto restoration shop, unaware a secret destiny awaits her. One that will leap from the pages of her grandmother’s hand-painted book of fairytales.

Tanner Burkhardt is the stoic Minister of Culture for the Grand Duchy of Hessenberg. When he is tasked to retrieve the long-lost princess, he must overcome his fear of failure in order to secure his nation’s future—and his own.

Yet lurking in the political shadows is a fierce opponent with sinister plans to abolish the throne forever. Overwhelmed with opposition, Regina must decide if she’s destined to restore old cars or an ancient nation. Together—with a little divine intervention—Regina and Tanner discover the truth of her heritage and the healing power of true love.
Review:
This is the book that I've been waiting for since I finished the last page of Once Upon a Prince last year. No, seriously... like borderline cyber-stalking Hauck's Instagram for updates on when she was going to be done writing the next book because you JUST.CAN'T.WAIT!!! I absolutely adored Once Upon a Prince and I have to say, upfront, that I was initially very disappointed that it was a completely new story and not a continuation of the first one. However, once I got over that initial disappointment, I'm glad that it opened up a new world with a whole new set of loveable characters like Regina ("Reggie") and Tanner.

Like I've said before, what girl does not want to be a princess? I think the only thing better than becoming a princess by marrying a prince, is finding out that you were BORN one. Girl power, all the way! This is what happens with Reggie when Tanner, the Minister of Culture of Hessenberg, arrives in her town to inform her that she is the long lost royal heiress to the throne through her Grandmother Alice. Reggie spends most of the story dealing with the conflict of leaving her life behind (where she has recently rediscovered a love in restoring old cars) to be the rightful heiress of a small nation, which she knows nothing about.

It is this journey that brings Reggie and Tanner together and THIS is what I love the most about Rachel's writing. She writes stories about characters that feel so real to you... in their flaws, in their weaknesses, in their insecurities and in their extra "baggage." You love them and root for them. Not only that, but it truly is refreshing to read a clean, light-hearted, romantic love story that is not all about lust and sex. And even though, almost every single one of us will ever marry a prince or be a long lost princess, we are princesses in God's Kingdom! Plus, God's plans are ALWAYS better than our own. It's refreshing also to see real characters struggle with following their own plans (which we always think is better) or obeying God by following His.

Sprinkled throughout the story are journal entries from Reggie's grandmother, Alice, and they provided flashbacks to connect the past and present together. The diary entries provide insight into who Alice was and her innermost thoughts and feelings and definitely add depth to the story overall. I also like that we get a glimpse of Nathaniel and Susanna from the first book. (That definitely helped me get over the fact that the WHOLE book wasn't going to be about them.)

Without giving away too much, there are lots of twists and turns as Reggie has to deal with strong opposition while ultimately deciding whether she's going to follow her destiny and more importantly, her heart. 

Lastly, I wanted so bad to love this book as much as I did the first one. I think I set my expectations so high that nothing could have met them. In addition, the beginning of the story was a little slow for me, especially since I know nothing about cars other than driving them and buying gas, so the early parts of the book was hard for me to get really into because I couldn't relate. It didn't have the same sparkle as the first book, but after I got over myself, I'm happy to say that it was still a very enjoyable story and I hope there's a 3rd one to look forward to.  Rachel Hauck is an amazing writer and I hope there are many, many more books to come from her in the future.

Rating:
4 out of 5 stars

About the author:
Rachel Hauck is the bestselling author of ACFW Book of the Year winner Sweet Caroline, RITA Finalist Love Starts With Elle, bestselling and RITA Finalist The Wedding Dress, and of the critically acclaimed fiction collaboration with multi-platinum country artist Sara Evans, The Songbird Novels. Hauck’s latest release, is Princess Ever After, the second release in the Royal Wedding series. Once Upon A Prince (the first in the series), received rave reviews, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist.

Hauck earned a degree in Journalism from Ohio State University and is a huge Buckeyes fan. She worked in the corporate software world until 2004 when she began to write fulltime. Although she admits to being Yankee-born, Hauck has lived in the south most of her life and works her southern experience into her stories. She now lives in sunny, though sometimes hurricane-plagued, central Florida with her husband and writes from her own two-story tower.

She is the past president of American Christian Fiction Writers and now serves on the executive board. She was named ACFW 2013 Mentor of the Year.

Hauck is also one of ten author contributors to Southern Belle View Daily.

Visit her website at www.rachelhauck.com to sign up for her newsletter, read her blog and follow her on Facebook (Rachel Hayes Hauck) and Twitter (@RachelHauck).

Check out more posts on the blog tour: http://litfusegroup.com/author/rhauck

Rachel Hauck is celebrating the release of her latest "swoon"-worthy romance,  Princess Ever After, with a fun $200 "Princess" prize package giveaway and a Facebook "Princess" party on March 6th. Grab your tiaras and RSVP today!

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One winner will receive:
  • A $200 Visa cash card (buy your very own "princess ever after" gown or tanks of gas for your "royal" ride)
  • Princess Ever After, Once Upon a Prince, and The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on March 6th. Winner will be announced at Rachel's "Princess" Facebook Party on March 6th. Connect with Rachel for an evening of "royal" book chat, princess-themed trivia, laughter, prizes, and an exclusive look at the next book in the Royal Wedding series!

So grab your copy of Princess Ever After and join Rachel and friends on the evening of March 6th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 6th!

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