- Read my review of Royal Powers Book 1, Duking It Out, by E.J. Russell
After the first installment of this shared-world series focused on the royals who have superpowers, I was excited to read something similar yet completely different. The fact that some “commoners” also have superpowers is unsurprising based on how the world works. I was also intrigued by the concept of a regulatory authority that employs those non-royals with powers.
On the romance side of the story, Derek and Sam were an absolute delight. Their “meet-cute” did not feel contrived, and while the pace of their growing relationship did feel rushed at times, the characters were so adorable that I was happy to roll with it. Derek’s involvement in Sam’s dilemma was also resolved in a fun way, though the danger was still believable.
My biggest quibble with this story is that absolutely none of it took advantage of the southern European setting of North and South Abarra. Every name in the book is Anglicized, and other than Sam referring to spending some time in Madrid, the book could have taken place anywhere in America or most of the United Kingdom. Kaye missed out on some world-building opportunities, and I felt the lack. I appreciate that events from the previous book, DUKING IT OUT, were referenced, but a particular sub-plot on Derek’s end is also never resolved.
The title itself gets top marks for how it can serve a dual purpose based on which characters you’re thinking of. I still look forward to continuing with the books in this series, even if this particular author did not strike a chord with me.