Fashion/celebrity bloggers Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan have imagined the personal lives of the royal family for years on their blog Go Fug Yourself. They’ve recapped the wedding of “Wills and Kate,” the births of both babies, even that terrible reality show- I Want to Marry Harry (not the real Harry, obviously). It was inevitable that they would write a book about this fantasy family.
In an alternative world history, the House of Lyons not the House of Windsor is the monarchy of Great Britain. (I like to think that the alternative William and Kate are living in the suburbs somewhere, watching EastEnders while heating up a frozen pizza for dinner.) American Rebecca “Bex” Porter is about to marry heir to the throne Prince Nicholas. How did the daughter of the inventor of the Coucherator became the fiancée to one of the most eligible bachelors in the world? That love story is The Royal We.
So, this is fan fiction, but who cares? It’s fun, and well written, and at times poignant. Nicholas has his own ginger-haired brother, Freddie, and Bex her own Pippa, Lacey. Freddie is the wild one, while Nick must maintain an aura of dignity. Bex goes from being an Oxford art student, to the most scrutinized young woman on the planet.
The Royal We has lots of drinking, “snogging,” and sex, as young people with tons of money are wont to do, but it also tackles the pressure of living under the expectations of the royal family and the media for the young royals and their girlfriends. It feels claustrophobic at times. Bex loses herself in becoming a commodity, of creating persona for the public to consume. Everything she does is picked apart by the media. However, she’s a young person, and she makes mistakes. What will those mistakes cost her?
The Royal We gave me more sympathy for people living in a public fish bowl, even with all their privileges. It can’t be easy to have to consider every side of every small decision you make and know that someone somewhere will analyze it to death.
If I had one complaint, it would be that the courtship angst dragged on too long. The whole thing happened over years. It’s fairly chunky at over 460 pages. Other than that, I loved it. The secondary characters were entertaining and the Fug Girls maintained their patented humour throughout.
PS- Want to know what it’s like to be a writing duo? Check out the Fug Girls post on The Toast.