Happily ever after is a thing of the past.
A series of natural disasters has decimated the earth. Cut off from the rest of the world, England is a dark place. The sun rarely shines, food is scarce, and groups of criminals roam the woods, searching for prey. The people are growing restless.
When a ruthless revolutionary sets out to overthrow the crown, he makes the royal family his first target. Blood is shed in Buckingham Palace, and only sixteen-year-old Princess Eliza manages to escape.
Determined to kill the man who destroyed her family, Eliza joins the enemy forces in disguise. She has nothing left to live for but revenge, until she meets someone who helps her remember how to hope—and to love—once more. Now she must risk everything to ensure that she not become… The Last Princess.
This is going to be crazily difficult to write because, as I have said before and will reiterate again, I dislike writing negative reviews. However, I cannot compromise my integrity so here’s the thing, I found it impossible to like The Last Princess and I will list the reasons in the next few paragraphs.
The holes in the logic made it very difficult for me to continue reading the novel without pausing to wonder about what was happening in the narrative. For instance, in the very beginning of the novel, Eliza is sitting and observing the soldiers which establishes the presence of armed and trained fighters whose primary job is the protection of the royal family. Yet, when Eliza discovers the note written by her six year old brother (mind you, the note is written by a six year old with extraordinary writing skills and does not at all read like a child who is running away from home in the state of mind that the brother is said to be in), she takes her horse and makes for the forest which is apparently where her brother has run away to.
There are two issues I have with this:
- Why does Eliza make no use of the soldiers to look for her brother who has run away in a time of great civil unrest? Why is SHE galloping after her brother?
- The brother is sickly. How did he manage to cover that much distance by himself when he cannot move for long periods without medicine?
See the gaps in the logic? And there are more, a lot more that detracts from the reading experience. The oil has run out. Eliza talks about it once and again. But they are driving in Ashton Martins. After the “17 Days of Terror” when the world is remade and life changes drastically, someone presents the Queen with fruit and she takes it and eats it. Why? Would not the people allowed to present food to the royals be carefully vetted?
And it gets even more farfetched as the novel progresses. The King assures his daughter emphatically that no one will ever hurt them again but in the next instant, there is shattering glass and the king is dead, giving a surer lie to his words than…yeah. Oh, and the world is dying around them, yet the royals are having a feast. It is enough to make one agree with the rebels.
There is no characterization. All characters, Eliza included, seem very hollow stereotypes of other characters and I really am sorry to say this but the writing itself was not conducive to reading with choppy sentences and awkward segues that is just…painful.
Maybe it’s because I started this book with a lot of hope. I wanted to be blown away by the story. By the characters. By the writing. However, unfortunately, the book failed to deliver, at least to me. Whether you will have the same reaction as me depends on what you expect from a novel. I can’t, not in good conscience, recommend this to you and I’m sorry for it.