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Royally Jacked    by Niki Burnham order for
Royally Jacked
by Niki Burnham
Order:  USA  Can
Simon & Schuster, 2004 (2004)
* *   Reviewed by Melissa Parcel

Valerie Winslow's comfortable life changed in an instant. Her parents have announced that they are getting a divorce ... because her mom is gay and moving in with her new girlfriend. Understandably upset, Val decides not to tell her best friends until she has come to grips with the situation. But she's not given much time to deal with the news, since she has a big decision to make.

Val can either live with her mom and girlfriend, which would require switching schools mid-sophomore year, or she can move in with her dad. The trouble is, Val's dad has a new job as protocol advisor to the Prince of Schwerinborg, in Europe. Either decision will end Val's life as she knows it. Since she's having a difficult time dealing with her mom's lifestyle change, she decides to go with her dad. Talk about strange! It's a gradual process learning about life in a foreign country, not to mention living in a palace. But once Val meets sixteen-year-old Prince Georg, things are definitely looking up. Will Val ever fit in? Is Georg the guy for her?

The book gives a funny glimpse into the life of a teenager whose world has just turned upside down. Valerie is believable and humorously honest, laying her thoughts and feelings out for the reader to see. Because she has to shelter her views from friends and family, only the reader gets to know what's truly inside. The romance between Val and Georg is touching and develops at a natural pace. The only drawback is the story's abrupt ending, which leaves readers hanging with many unanswered questions. I have a feeling that the author is taking a page from the Princess Diaries and will continue this series with the rest of the story.

Royally Jacked is a cute read, filled with pop-culture references and using language, with which all teens can identify. It will keep you entertained and dreaming of finding a prince of your very own!

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