Just Ella by Annette K. Larsen Book Summary: A Proper Romance Ariella was only looking for a distraction, something to break up the monotony of palace life. What she found was a young man willing to overlook her title and show her a new and vibrant way of life. But when her growing feelings for Gavin spiral out of control and clash with the expectations of her station, she will discover that the consequences of her curiosity are far more severe than she’d imagined. I watched in helpless horror as two guards hauled Gavin to his feet and dragged him from the room. My voice was frozen, unable to protest as another guard took hold of my arm, leading me upstairs. From the confines of my room, I stared into the darkness beyond my window, hoping to catch one more glimpse of Gavin. He was gone, and I wondered if he would have been better off if he had never met me. I write clean romance. Why? Because that’s what I love to read, but over the years I’ve discovered it’s quite a challenge to find good clean romance. I believe it’s a genre that many people are looking for and too few authors are writing. My first novel, Just Ella, took me many years to write because I wanted it to be more than just a cutesy love story. I wanted it to have depth, to feel genuine. Hopefully I succeeded, but you’ll have to be the judge.
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Grab your copy of Just Ella for just $4.99!Author Annette K. Larsen I was born in Utah, but grew up in Flagstaff Arizona and St. Louis Missouri, the fifth of seven children. I attended college at Southern Virginia University and Brigham Young University where I studied English and Theater. I now live in Idaho with my husband and four children. I have Charlotte Bronte to thank for the courage to write novels. After being bombarded with assigned reading about women who justified abandoning either their families or their principles in the name of love, I had the great fortune of reading Jane Eyre. And that was it: finally a heroine who understood that being moral and making the right choice was hard, and sometimes it hurt, but it was still worth it. After rereading it several years later, I realized that if I wanted more books to exist with the kinds of heroines I admired, then I might as well write a few myself. My books are about women who face hard choices, who face pain and rejection and often have to sacrifice what they want for what is right. The consequences are often difficult or unpleasant, but it the end, doing what’s right will always be worth it. I believe there is no substitute for good writing or good chocolate. Fortunately, one often leads to the other.
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My Review: *****--5 Stars!!
It's true. I was one of those girls who wished to be a princess. In fact, I was obsessed with Princess Diana and love any "royal" news. I had a friend growing up who called me "Princess." So...how could I not absolutely fall in love with this story?! What I found to be ironic is that Ariella is a princess but doesn't really want to be one. How could she not? Well...after this glimpse, however fictional it may be, into the life of royalty, I could definitely understand her reasoning. That didn't make me love the story any less or cause me to wish I'd never wished to be a princess.
Princess Ariella, or Princess Ari, or just Ella, seemed to have the perfect life...yet she yearns for more. I loved to see how normal she really was--climbing trees, sneaking out, befriending unlikely friends. She was so genuine, truly compassionate, and most definitely humble. I loved the example she was to her sisters and how brave she was. Some of the situations that she found herself in were quite frightening, yet she handled things well. Amazingly well.
I loved the relationship that Ella had with her father, the king, until the turn of events caused him to punish her. My heart broke for her and while I could understand where he was coming from, my respect for him decreased, although he did try and earn it back later.
Gavin. Who wouldn't love a friend like Gavin? He found himself risking everything to do what he knew to be morally right. I loved the way he stuck his foot in his mouth at the first meeting and how hard he tried to be the proper citizen, while fulfilling royal commands.
As with any true princess story, there is a villain and this one is not whom you might expect a villain to be.
I thought everything about this book was fabulous--from the adventure to the romance to the relationships.
Content: some mild violence; kissing. CLEAN!!