Charming the Prince
Charming the Prince is going to be one of my favorite funnies for 1999. I found myself laughing out loud at the antics of the dozen children of Bannor the Bold – a man who can out-fight any enemy – a man who laughs at pain – a man who can besiege a castle while shrugging off arrows in his back and boiling pitch running down his person – a man who has locked himself in his room for fear of his children.
I like children in romances provided they are realistic and integral to the story and are not just there to be cute. I am the oldest of 9 children and have a cousin who has 11. When we all got together for family outings, our shenanigans did resemble those of Bannor’s brood. Bannor’s children were a little rowdy, just like we were but they were not evil, or even worse, so cute they make your teeth ache.
Since my fellow reviewer Liz Zink has given a plot synopsis (in her dual review of the same book), I’ll tell why I enjoyed this book so much. Maybe it’s because I come from a very large family, but I found the actions of Bannor’s children funny and pretty realistic. The children’s love for their father and desire for his attention were amusing and almost poignant. Poor Bannor, it’s not as though he does not love his children, he has just been away for so long that they are strangers and he has no idea how to treat them.
Bannor’s wife, Willow has a problem with her own father. She is almost a Cinderella character, having been mistreated by her step-mother and step siblings while being ignored by her own father whom she loves so much. When she observes the dynamics of the relationship between Bannor and his children, she recognises that they want his love and attention, just like she she still wants her own father’s love and attention. She then comes to realize that she does not dislike children at all, she just dislikes how her stepmother has treated her and how her siblings have copied that ill treatment. She and Bannor’s children soon get along just fine.
As for Bannor and Willow’s relationship – I like how Teresa Medeiros showed its slow unfolding. Willow had to come to terms with herself and her feelings of abandonment by her father until she could respond to Bannor. There is a lot of sexual tension between them and the love scenes are very tender and sensual – and funny too. I mean, there are 12 children hanging around counting every kiss and wishing and hoping that Willow and their father will stay together. Since Willow has come into their lives, they’ve never had it so good – so has Bannor, although it takes him a while to figure it out.
Charming the Prince is aptly named – it is simply a charming and very funny story with a large cast of characters (and not just Bannor’s big family either). Maybe I felt right at home in the large family of Bannor the Bold, or maybe I just enjoyed a story that gave me several good laughs, or maybe I just enjoyed a wonderful hero and heroine – all I know is that I thoroughly enjoyed Charming The Prince.