Need the quintessential breezy summer read? Pick up “Royally Roma” by Teri Wilson.
The premise is a gender-swapped, modern “Roman Holiday,” which I adore. That movie is style and a whirlwind romance, which is what this story gets right. Do not go into this assuming it’s a copy of the Audrey Hepburn film, appreciate that it’s really inspired by the story and honors the spirit of it.
Julia Costa is the complicated heroine, acting as a tour guide to make money, working toward a better life and trying to escape memories of exes. Niccolo la Torre, Crown Prince of Lazaretto, is ready for an adventure, though he’d never admit it. The fates are at work when Niccolo decides to act on a whim and lie to Julie in order to escape another hard day as a prince.
The story zips us through the streets of Rome, assuaging any wanderlust a reader may be having this summer. Julia wows Niccolo with her knowledge of the area and history, while Julia is trying to keep her cool with this dreamy man just inches from her, hanging on her every word.
The prince’s keepers are after him, Julia’s job is upset she was a no-show for her scheduled tour and sooner than later the truth has to come out.
I read this book while flying to Florida and it was a joy. It’s short, it’s sweet and it screams “make me into a movie.” I was hooked from the start and loved the nods to the movie that inspired it. The story takes place over days, so the excellerated romance may be jarring, but it’s pretty standard to suspend disbelief around that when it comes to romance novels.
Who should read this: Audrey fans and those wishing they could take a vacation this summer, but stuck at home.
What you should drink with this: Chilled white wine.