It’s not everyday that you get an invitation to a Royal Tea! Disney Hyperion celebrated the publication of Melissa de la Cruz’s new book The Ring and the Crown today at the beautiful Peninsula Hotel, and I was lucky enough to receive an invitation. Look, I even had my deer dress up in anticipation of the occasion. She got fancy and is wearing a flower crown like the girl on the gorgeous cover.
You’ll notice that Melissa de la Cruz and Margaret Stohl are also wearing flower crowns in the photo below, and the centerpieces also match the cover! Disney thought of every detail. Doesn’t Melissa look pretty? Her dress was the most perfect shade of pink.
The book is set in an alternate history world where the fate of the Franco-British Empire rests on two girls, Princess Marie-Victoria and her friend Aelwyn Myrddn, so it was very appropriate to be in such a luxurious setting. Plus they actually do have tea and delicious things to eat in the book!
Everyone was greeted at the door with a glass of champagne, and it was great fun to watch local authors arrive to support Melissa. Among the attendees were Tahereh Mafi, Ransom Riggs, Alyson Noel, Margaret Stohl, and Leigh Bardugo. Emily from Disney welcomed everyone to the event and spoke about what a pleasure it was to have worked with Melissa for the last 15 years as her editor. Melissa talked about how happy she was to celebrate not only the book, but also the wonderful relationships and friendships she’s made in the Los Angeles YA author community.
As we were served our lovely tea sandwiches and sweets, I got to chat with a number of people from Disney, including some of the wonderful publicists who work with bloggers, as well as the sweet person behind the Hyperion Twitter account who told me about some of the fabulous books they have coming up soon.
Melissa had also come around before the event and switched around some place cards so I was seated next to Leigh, and it was great fun to chat with her about books we’ve loved lately and YA film adaptations we’re looking forward to. I did my best to be polite and not pester her about Ruin and Rising, guys, but it was hard. So hard.
Each of our plates had a hardback of The Ring and the Crown as a party gift, and Melissa was gracious enough to sign them. I read the book a couple of weeks ago, and it’s very enjoyable as a romance novel. With magic! And arranged marriages! And murder! Oops, have I said too much?
I can totally see this as an extremely addictive, soapy television mini-series, and would recommend it to readers who enjoyed Jennifer Donnelly’s adult historical novel The Tea Rose. Because there are some adult situations in it, the book is best suited for mature teens and adults. The upper YA designation allows the book to explore some interesting dynamics that you wouldn’t often see in YA, though. I especially liked the non-typical way the book ended, both in terms of the overall story arc and the romances, and it should be interesting to see where the story goes in the sequels. Anyway, I know a lot of our readers will enjoy this scandal-filled page-turner, and I’m glad we have a copy to give away. Go forth and enter below!
I had such a lovely time at the event, and thank Disney Hyperion and Melissa for having me. I told her editor that the only thing that could have made it more perfect was if Melissa had worn a ball gown like the spectacular one featured in the book, and she said smilingly, “Well, there’s always book two…”
Win a copy of The Ring and the Crown!
Thanks to our friends at Disney Hyperion, we have a pretty ARC of this book to give away to one of our lucky readers! We’re making this one international too, so it’s open to all readers aged 18 and older, or 13 and older with parental permission.*
All you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form and leave a thoughtful comment below telling us why you NEED this book in your life!
*Sorry, my fancy deer is not included. Nice try.
Princess Marie-Victoria, heir to the Lily Throne, and Aelwyn Myrddn, bastard daughter of the Mage of England, grew up together. But who will rule, and who will serve?
Quiet and gentle, Marie has never lived up to the ambitions of her mother, Queen Eleanor the Second, Supreme Ruler of the Franco-British Empire. With the help of her Head Merlin, Emrys, Eleanor has maintained her stranglehold on the world’s only source of magic. She rules the most powerful empire the world has ever seen.
But even with the aid of Emrys’ magic, Eleanor’s extended lifespan is nearing its end. The princess must marry and produce an heir or the Empire will be vulnerable to its greatest enemy, Prussia. The two kingdoms must unite to end the war, and the only solution is a match between Marie and Prince Leopold VII, heir to the Prussian throne. But Marie has always loved Gill, her childhood friend and soldier of the Queen’s Guard.
Together, Marie and Aelwyn, a powerful magician in her own right, come up with a plan. Aelwyn will take on Marie’s face, allowing the princess to escape with Gill and live the quiet life she’s always wanted. And Aelwyn will get what she’s always dreamed of–the chance to rule. But the court intrigue and hunger for power in Lenoran England run deeper than anyone could imagine. In the end, there is only rule that matters in Eleanor’s court: trust no one.
The Ring and the Crown will be published on April 1, 2014.
P.S. One of the ladies I met at the event also did an event write up as well, check it out at Beverly Hills Mom! Such a fun time was had by all.