Have you ever wondered what might’ve happened if the Americans hadn’t won the Revolution, the British and French merged to form the world’s mightiest empire, and the world was controlled by wizards? Sounds like quite a different Earth than we know now, but Melissa De La Cruz brings this Wizarding World of 19th Century Gossip Girl to life in her latest novel The Ring and The Crown

This tale of ladies and princesses, wizards and mages, princes and paupers lets us live in the world of royal and high-class societies at the turn of the twentieth century. Intertwining stories amongst the who’s-who of Europe keep us guessing the whole time  – Who loves who? Will the princess fall for the pauper? Will best friends betray one another? Amidst the drama, though, is an untold history of what could’ve been. These elements combined create a powerful, page-turning tale of love, romance, magic, and history that is nearly impossible to put down.

As twenty-somethings, we’re often caught in the rut of everyday life: work, relationships, family, just trying to get by. Melissa de la Cruz lets us escape the monotony of our lives and hang with some princesses and mages for a little while. If you think that this book isn’t for you, think again. This type of book is not normally my go-to read, but I have enjoyed it thoroughly, and read it in one weekend (leaving my schoolwork behind for a few days). Definitely a good vacation from reality for those of us too broke to actually go visit the European castles.

Magic is power, and power is magic…

Once they were inseparable, just two little girls playing games in a mighty castle. Now Princess Marie-Victoria, heir to the mightiest empire in the world, and Aelwyn Myrddyn, a bastard mage, face vastly different futures.

Quiet and gentle, Marie has never lived up to the ambitions of her mother, Queen Eleanor the Second. With the help of her Merlin, Eleanor has maintained a stranglehold on the world’s only source of magic. While the enchanters faithfully serve the crown, the sun will never set on the Franco-British Empire.

As the annual London Season begins, the great and noble families across the globe flaunt their wealth and magic at parties, teas, and, of course, the lavish Bal du Drap d’Or, the Ball of the Gold Cloth.

But the talk of the season is Ronan Astor, a social-climbing American with only her dazzling beauty to recommend her. Ronan is determined to make a good match to save her family’s position. But when she falls for a handsome rogue on the voyage over, her lofty plans are imperiled by her desires.

Meanwhile, Isabelle of Orleans, daughter of the displaced French royal family, finds herself cast aside by Leopold, heir to the Prussian crown, in favor of a political marriage to Marie-Victoria. Isabelle arrives in the city bent on reclaiming what is hers. But Marie doesn’t even want Leopold-she has lost her heart to a boy the future queen would never be allowed to marry.

When Marie comes to Aelwyn, desperate to escape a life without love, the girls form a perilous plan that endangers not only the entire kingdom but the fate of the monarchy.


Melissa de la Cruz (www.melissa-delacruz.com) is the author of many best-selling novels, including all the books in the Blue Bloods series: Blue BloodsMasqueradeRevelationsThe Van Alen Legacy, Keys to the Repository, Misguided Angel, Bloody Valentine, Lost in Time, and Gates of Paradise. She lives in Los Angeles, California with her husband and daughter.


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GlamPrizePackYou can win a “Glam of Thrones” Prize Pack! Enter below to win a glam Laura Mercier makeup collection and copy of The Ring and the Crown. To be qualified to win, you must follow us on Twitter at @forever20tweets. For extra entries, you can like us on Facebook and tweet about this giveaway. All entries must be received by Monday April 7th at midnight ET. The winner will be announced on Tuesday April 8th.

Prizing & samples  courtesy of Disney Publishing

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A born-and-raised Jersey girl with a chronic case of wanderlust, Samantha spends her days reading, writing, and planning adventures. She currently teaches classes at the community college while living at home with her parents, trying and failing to become a part of the proverbial real world. Her dream is for someone to pay her for writing and traveling, but in reality she'll probably be teaching forever. Follow her mundane musings on Twitter @SamanthaG2012, and check out her personal blog, wanderlustingmillenial.blog.com

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