See what happens when I am on a deadline! 😂 Today, I have another review of a book to share with you guys. It’s titled Rebel Queen written by Jeana E. Mann and is the sequel to The Royal Arrangement. I’ll be linking my review of The Royal Arrangement somewhere in this post so you can check it out and have a better understanding on how the story follows 😊.
Before I begin, here’s a Disclaimer.
**I received an Advanced Reader’s Copy from Booksprout in exchange for an honest opinion**
Book Title: The Rebel Queen
Author: Jeanna E. Mann
Total Number of Pages: 260
Format: Kindle eBook
Publication Date: 15th October 2019
Series: The Rebel Queen Duet
“Shall we begin?” When spoken by my new husband, these three little words fill me with terror and anticipation.
In private, King Henry rules my body like he rules his country—with unrelenting control and passion. I crave his orders, his punishment, his commands. Outside the bedroom, we’re strangers caught in a web of lies and decadence.
Our marriage is a sham, a business arrangement devised to save my life and secure his crown. He doesn’t love me. He loves my body, controlling it, shaming it, worshipping it. To survive the dangers at court, I need to be smart, but it’s hard to think straight with a man like Henry between my legs.
Each night, he locks the bedroom door, determined to teach me a new lesson. Obedience, patience, trust. I lie awake in bed waiting for the sound of his footsteps and the latest installment in pleasure and pain. My heart pounds when the hinges creak and his broad shoulders block the door. I’m not ready, but I can’t wait to feel his hands on me. He shoves his bowtie in my mouth, binds my hands to the headboard, and whispers in my ear…
“Shall we begin?”
TRIGGER WARNINGS: This is a Dark Romance story and contains strong language, explicit sex scenes and a little bit of S/m content.
Rebel Queen picks up right after The Royal Arrangement ended, with Henry and Everly’s marriage. In the prequel, we saw that Henry and Everly were just stepping into their “marriage of convenience” and in this book, they are forced to live together according to “royal protocols” *inserts heavy eye-roll and hmph*.
As I had mentioned in my review of The Royal Arrangement, I was still not quite fond of Henry in this book either. Henry was supposed to be written in this way and I don’t mind it, but what I felt would have been better is if he had a relevant back story which would explain his arrogant and prick-like behaviour (let’s keep this review PG-13 😅). You all can form the “A” word in your mind because that’s the perfect word to describe him. Other than the *inserts spoiler* broken heart thingy of young Henry, their wasn’t much of Henry’s back story.
Henry is of course possessive about Everly and sometimes almost to the extreme where it would have been problematic if it wasn’t addressed in the book. But the good thing is Everly is a strong, independent woman and she does question and challenge Henry’s behaviour and attitude towards her. I loved that Jeana portrayed Everly as equally strong as Henry. She was nothing like Anastasia (from Fifty Shades of Grey) and was more like Eva Tramell (from the Crossfire Series). When I say this, I don’t mean that demure, modest or shyness should be looked down upon. (Different people have different personalities and we should not shame any of them nor the people who possess them). All I mean to say is when you don’t appreciate someone’s treatment of you, and you’re confused about their character, you’re supposed to address that issue (which Eva does over and over again but Ana doesn’t, not until the second book in the series).
Everly develops as a character even more in this book. I would say that her character development was better than Henry’s. Henry is as usual, an arrogant and powerful man who wants all his demands to be fulfilled without any question. And, let’s not even talk about his controlling habits. Everly’s life was in danger in Book 1 so she was a confused and scared mess but in this book, I saw her reaching her full potential as a character, as the King’s consort and most importantly, as the QUEEN. She is a strong, confident and empathetic woman. She challenges all the age old traditions of the Royal family. Henry perhaps develops into a a better Henry because of Everly’s challenging attitude. There were times when I felt she gave in too quickly and easily but I can see that happening in real life. So even though I was like “Stop it, girl. Don’t fall for it”, I have to admit that we humans are imperfect beings and we sometimes make decisions we are not proud of.
There was a mystery/suspense element in Book 1 but in Book 2, I felt it fizzled out too soon. Although it was resolved in the end, the whole situation was a bit underwhelming for me considering that the father-daughter relationship is what forced Everly to accept Henry’s proposition. While I understand that it was a sub-plot and only a catalyst in getting the two protagonists together, the suspense could have been elaborated.
Given that it’s a dark contemporary romance, the sex scenes doesn’t actually happen in the present. They are presented through the flashbacks of Everly’s character and they aren’t too descriptive either. It almost felt like Jeana was uncomfortable writing the scenes.
I would commend Jeana’s writing style. It is not the raw and unpolished writing style that sometimes writers of erotica adopt. The narrative really brings out the sexual tension between Henry and Everly and even after they are married and in love, I could still feel it. So kudos to Jeana for keeping that fire alive! Rebel Queen does have a HEA ending and I was quite happy with the way it ended.
The Rebel Queen Duet is a page-turner for sure. I loved the way Jeana handled the power dynamics between Everly and Henry. Their relationship is passionate and sinful. Although there were problematic issues in their relationship, I appreciate that they were addressed and worked out.
If you’re into sizzling romances with strong characters, you should definitely give this series a shot but please be warned that it has adult content and is meant for 18+ readers.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeana is a USA Today and Publishers Weekly Bestselling Author from Indiana. She gave up a career in the corporate world to write about sexy billionaires and alpha bad boys. With over twenty books and several awards beneath her belt, she’s never regretted her choice to live out her dream. She’s a free spirit, a wanderer at heart, and loves animals with a passion. When she’s not tripping over random objects, you’ll find her walking in the sunshine with her rambunctious dogs and dreaming about true love.
You can find her here:
LET US CHAT!
What do you think of the Romance genre? I know a lot of people are not fond of this genre and I used to be one of them. If you don’t like this genre, I would like to know your thoughts on this. If you are a fan of Romance novels, recommend me some in the comments down below! 💜🌸