My rating: 2 of 5 stars
The premise sounded interesting, and the setting was in a time period that I love, but unfortunately neither of these was enough. The characters were so flat that I couldn’t bring myself to care about any of them, which was unfortunate because I imagine that if they’d actually been interesting, the ending would have had much more of an impact. But alas, all I felt upon finishing was relief.
Additionally, I felt like this book moved very, very slowly, probably because there were so many different subplots, they actually took up more room than the main plot. I mean, I love me some subplots, but there were way too many here, and some of them downright irritated me. For example, the suffragette subplot irritated me because I feel like there should’ve been a lot more complexity involved; for me, it basically boiled down to, Rose feels conflicted about seeing this man because she’s a suffragette and that means men are BAD and she’ll be a terrible suffragette if she actually falls in love with one!
I did like how all of the historical details were woven in so effortlessly. For example, we see parts of the buildup to World War I, the Titanic, the advent of film, and foreshadowing of the future Edward VIII’s abdication. I also think Dean did a good job portraying the loneliness of royal life. I only wish Dean had done as good a job fleshing out her characters as she did bringing her setting to life.