Wednesday, November 29, 2017

5 Regal Books on My Shelf - The Coronation Blog Tour

Hey all! I'm popping back in the middle of the week to join indie author Livy Jarmusch's Regal Reads blog tour! (Link leads to the tour schedule, where you can check out all the blogs involved.) Livy recently released her story, Regal Hearts, which is written in a TV show format with seasons and episodes and whatnot. Pretty nifty, right? Here's the synopsis:

Following the dramatic birth of her royal daughters, the Queen of Bella Adar is murdered by the merciless sword of an evil usurper. The helpless princesses are placed in the care of the URIA, an undercover organization who safely extracts and protects the girls from a tragic fate. Sixteen years later, Lena Bodner encounters a stranger who uncovers secrets from her past...
Find Regal Reads in paperback or digital format.

Livy Jarmusch is a twenty-something author, singer, and songwriter. She enjoys crafting YA Christian fiction that is pure, lovely, inspirational, and of course, entertaining! When she's not writing, you can usually find her playing guitar, blogging, drinking peppermint tea, connecting with new friends, planning her next trip to Disney, or pinning images of Europe and Golden Retriever Puppies.

So to celebrate this royalty-themed book, today we'll be discussing five of the most regal books on my shelf!

Novels about long-lost princesses and questing princes and mad queens and exiled kings are not hard to find. We seem to have a fascination with royalty--what it means to hold power and responsibility, how it feels to rule, the consequences of decisions that affect entire kingdoms, what it might be like to wake up in a turreted fortress every day, waited on hand and foot . . . I suspect that the pauper-turned-prince trope is effective because it hints at our true identities as children of the Lord of Lords--but that's a post for another day.

Like I said, I have no shortage of those sorts of books, so let's dive in! (Links lead to Goodreads.)

Waterfall // Lisa T. Bergren

It's been years since I read the captivating River of Time trilogy, but it still holds a place in my heart. Time travel? Yep. Medieval Italy? Yes please. A fabulous Italian royal and his equally fabulous sidekick? You bet. In this book, sisters Gabi and Lia accidentally transport themselves through an ancient Etruscan tomb into the middle of the medieval era--and yes, they do begin falling in love with the royal guy and his best friend.

I'm a bit fuzzy on the details, but I remember battles, treachery, plague, castles, and romance. (I have a feeling that when I return for a reread, I may find more sappiness than I recall . . . but who cares? It's a fun series!) Marcelo, the royal guy, has definitely stuck around in my memory, though.

Heartless // Anne Elisabeth Stengl

I distinctly remember how I met this book. I was browsing the local bookstore when the cover caught my eye. The blurb sounded interesting, though the name Aethelbald seemed odd, and I resolved to find the book at the library to see if it was any good. Time passed and I forgot . . . until the day I did find it at the library. As cliché as it sounds, there was no looking back! I promptly fell in love with Anne Elisabeth's rich prose, fascinating world, and soul-stirring themes. Tales of Goldstone Wood is still among my top favorite series of all time!

And this one involves royalty too! We have Una, who is quite frankly a self-centered princess at the beginning, but still lovable, and she grows so much by the end. There's her little brother Felix, a mischievous fellow, and their father, the king of Parumvir. But the monarch who stole the show for me is the Prince of Farthestshore--and if you haven't had the pleasure of meeting him yet, please, please read this book.

Raven's Ladder // Jeffrey Overstreet

The Auralia Thread is one series I haven't talked about enough around here! It's yet another one on my ever growing list of books-I-must-reread-one-day. The writing style isn't fast-paced, but the tapestry of painfully real characters in a richly textured storyworld held me entranced.

In this book, the third of four, we follow a weary King Cal-Raven as he tries to lead the straggling remnant of his kingdom to a new home. I don't want to spoil the plot for anyone, so I won't say much more, except that Cal-Raven's doubts and struggles and search for the light spoke to me on a deep level. Just--ACK. GO READ THIS TOO.

Curse of the Spider King // Wayne Thomas Batson

Hey, look, there's a book I actually did reread! It was slightly less stunning the second time around in terms of the writing style (and I feel bad for saying so), but definitely still a fun, exciting, romping adventure. If you're looking for royal characters, this book is packed with not one, not two, but SEVEN royal Elf Lords. Seven young teens who were spirited away to earth as babies, and are now returning home to Berinfell to protect their homeland against the Spider King.

You know those special scenes that leave you breathless? The rare ones that stir your heart and wake something up inside of you? I recall one chapter involving Grimwarden training the seven Elf Lords (I keep telling you, I'm a sucker for those training sequences), where he said something profound. I couldn't tell you the details of the dialogue or description, I just have a bottle of that airy, hopeful, hold-your-breath mood stored away. Don't you just love how books stay with you over the years? Even if this trilogy is less impressive to me now as a twenty-something reader than it was as a young teen, it meant something to me then, and that is still special.

The Royal Ranger // John Flanagan

Capping off this list is the twelfth and final book of Ranger's Apprentice. For those of you who haven't read the whole series yet, I'll keep things vague and hopefully spoiler-free.

This book takes a leap forward by several years . . . Will is now grown up, and becoming just as grouchy as Halt, when his friends decide that the perfect way to snap him out of his foul mood is to give him an apprentice of his own. This apprentice is a tad rebellious and unwilling--and yes, royal as well. The result is just the kind of light, amusing, sarcastic heartwarming adventure I expect from Mr. Flanagan.

There we have it! Five beloved regal reads on my shelf. Have you read some of these? What's your favorite royal book? And don't forget to go check out the rest of Livy's book tour!


  1. GASP You've read Waterfall too?? I love that book!


    1. You too? Yay! :D That trilogy is such a deliciously fun one!

  2. A Tracey post in the middle of the week? And a bookish post at that! WHAT A HAPPY SURPRISE!!! :D

    I absolutely agree that there's something so fascinating about royalty. I'm a total sucker for books about it. I can't seem to get enough of those kings and queens and princesses and princes! (Thankfully, there's definitely not a lack of them in fiction. XD)

    Sadly, the only book I've read on this list is Heartless! But I've definitely heard of the others. The River of Times series is one I've had my eye on for yeeears and still haven't tried. I have heard the romance got a bit thick and sappy at times? But it still sounds good! I'm ALWAYS here for time travel!

    Curse of the Spider King is also one I really, really want to read. In fact, I desperately need to read ALL of Batson's books, because I've only ever read The Door Within trilogy and that was aaages ago. It is way, way, WAY past due for me to try his other stuff! I love how a scene from it left such an impression on you. Isn't it so magical how scenes from books do that? We may not remember what was said or what even really happened, but we remember the FEELING it gave us. If that's not magic, I don't know what is.

    This whole post just made my bookish and royalty-loving heart happy! :D

    1. You're the cutest! XD

      Saaaaame! And yes, it's a good thing fiction, especially YA, is overflowing with royalty. That's one thing we definitely don't have a shortage of.

      *hugs Heartless for all of time* It's true, the romance was a bit thick and sappy--even younger me thought that. But for some reason I still really loved it? I have no idea what I'd think of it now, with a lower tolerance for romantic sap, but maybe it would be kind of a guilty pleasure read. XD Definitely give it a try and see what you think!

      WAIT. You've never read Curse of the Spider King? For some reason I thought you had! :O I'd say CotSK is on a similar level as The Door Within, so younger than our age group--but still! It's quite a fun trilogy (even if I have mixed feelings about the final book). :D And YES, that kind of reading experience has got to be magic!

      Awww, well, thank you! ^_^


    But I snagged the Regal Hearts ebook for free on Amazon because of Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales *nodnod*

    - Lisa

    1. NUUUUU. *shoves them all onto your TBR* XD

      Ooh, smart girl! I missed out! Hope you enjoy it. :D

  4. "I suspect that the pauper-turned-prince trope is effective because it hints at our true identities as children of the Lord of Lords--but that's a post for another day." Um..... I want this post!!
    One of the most thought-provoking things I've read about royalty in fiction is this:
    And if half the reason I like it is because he talks about Aragorn, so be it. But you might enjoy it. :)

    This post was a fun read! And you're really making me interested in this Prince of Farthestshore... Maybe I'll read those books someday.

    1. *studiously files the idea into my future blog post list* ;)

      Thank you so much for that link! What he says there rings deeply true for me. That longing for a king is exactly what I've never put into words, at least not that way. <3 I'll be pondering this for a while.

      Glad you enjoyed! AND GOODNESS, YES, HANNA. If you love fantasy and kings and deep themes, you would love Tales of Goldstone Wood!

  5. Wow, all of those titles sound super interesting. I'll have to check some out! Thanks so much for sharing your Royal bookshelf with us, and for being part of the Blog Tour! :)

    1. Thank you, Livy! 'Twas my pleasure to be a part of it! :)

  6. I've only read Heartless, adds the rest to list.

    1. And the builder of TBR piles cackles with glee... ;D

  7. These all look spectacular! I'm going to have to check out the River of Time series, because Italy and time travel? Right up my alley. :)

    1. Woohoo! River of Time is a really fun trilogy! Hope you enjoy it, Lucy! :D

  8. YEEESSS Heartless and Curse of the Spider King!! LOVE those! <333