‘Hush’ by Stacey R. Campbell

I don’t always manage to do things the right way around which is why I read the second book in the Lakeview series – Whisper – before I read book number one. Which is why I jumped at the opportunity to request the first book on Netgalley when I saw it under most requested and so I finally read the start of this series.

‘Hush’ is how it all started, the story of Blakely Henry, who was adopted by her parents 17 years ago and who has a little sister named Halle, star of book number 2. Blakely is beautiful, athletic and goes to boarding school in Canada.

Blakely has always wanted to know who her real parents are, not because she was unhappy with her parents but just to know where she came from but it was a very secretive closed adoption and she just didn’t have the chance to find out.

The reader, on the other side, learns pretty early on that Blakely is the illegitimate daughter of Tamura princess Olivia and her chauffeur. Then the Tamuran royal family gets killed in a not so accidental accident and the government is looking for distant relatives. They would have never found Blakely, had it not been for Max, journalism student who’s aunt was Olivia’s nanny back in the day. While going through his aunt’s belongings after her death, he finds private pictures of the young Princess and a newspaper announcement. From there, Max makes a pact with his journalism teacher to let him investigate if Blakely could really be the long lost heir to the throne while attending boarding school with them. It all goes a bit haywire after that.

This all may read very stereotypical and a lot like Princess Diaries and I have to agree. But, and this is a big but, it was a fun read and despite it being a bit predictable, the story was well written, the characters nicely rounded and the love story well done.

Despite Max already being a college student, he is only about  a year older than Blakely and I wasn’t irked out by their impeding romance. Yes, he isn’t forthcoming about why he is suddenly in her life but you can tell that his feelings are real and that he regrets his choice in a way. It’s a good story about friendship and young love and honestly, who wouldn’t have loved to be a princess at some point?

I like that this story features a main character that was adopted. The girl’s quest to find out her real parents isn’t portrayed in the way that she is missing out on anything from her parents but that she just has this very genuine interest in knowing who she looks alike, who decided to put her up for adoption and so on. In short, I liked this story a lot.

Having read a couple of less well written books in recent weeks, this was refreshing and it may not be high literature, I can definitely see teenagers enjoying this as much as I did. Having read book #2 beforehand, I knew some of what I was going in for but I was also surprised to learn there were no ghosts in this, nothing metaphysical whatsoever.

If you like stories about boarding schools, friendship and love and maybe always harboured at least a little hope to be a princess one day, this is the book for you. It’s quick, it’s fun, just read it and be happy. Fluff can be good.

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