A WRITER'S WIT
MY BOOK WORLD
In many ways, this is a commercial romance novel, but for once, it is about two young men, not a heterosexual couple. And not two ordinary men, but one is His Royal Highness, Prince Henry of the UK, and the other is Alex, the First Son of the United States (FSOTUS)—whose mother is elected the first female president. In a way, the two men have known each other, at least by sight, since they were children. The inciting incident, as how-to-write-novels will tell, you occurs when Alex attends the royal wedding of Henry’s brother in the UK. During a tussle, the two fall into the £75,000 wedding cake.
To make amends, Alex flies back to the UK for photo ops to demonstrate to the public how the two really are fine friends after all. While visiting a primary school where Prince Henry (BTW he’s gorgeous, like a young Prince William) volunteers. Alex is impressed with the prince’s sincere largesse, but when firecrackers are mistaken for gunfire, the two are shoved into a dark, cramped, custodial closet (so symbolic), where once again they argue. Sometime later, New Year’s maybe, Henry sails the Atlantic (by air) to appear at Alex’s party held at the White House. At one point, Henry feels left out and ventures onto the snow-covered lawn, and Alex eventually joins him, where Henry plants a big one on Alex’s mouth: the real inciting incident, perhaps. Alex, also a handsome physical specimen combining the best of his mother’s Anglo and his father’s Mexican heritage, is stunned but suddenly realizes he may be bisexual.
All I’ve describe so far, of course, is plot, but McQuiston adeptly creates well-rounded characters whom you care for. She creates a future in which the US not only reelects the first woman president but also one in which people of all ethnic groups hold important positions in government, both in the US and in the UK. And . . . the state of Texas finally turns blue, handing the president the final thirty-eight electoral votes that send her over the finish line. It is a future many of us have held dear in our hearts for decades, and McQuiston makes it happen realistically (but with a bit of whimsy, of course). For that alone, I am most grateful. She also writes several of the most romantic yet erotic sex scenes I’ve ever read—ones that, however, do not detract from the importance of the novel. Kudos to the author, and may we hope for a sequel, in which Prince Henry and FSOTUS marry and have (or adopt) children? A bonus chapter from Henry’s POV may suggest that. We’ll have to wait and see!
Nov. 23: HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
TUES Nov. 28 : A Writer's Wit | Rita Mae Brown
WEDS Nov. 29: A Writer's Wit | Peter Cameron
THURS Nov. 30: A Writer's Wit | Mark Twain
FRI: My Book World | Jennifer Egan, Manhattan Beach