Wren Wheeler has flown five thousand miles across the ocean to discover she’s the worst kind of traveler: the kind who just wants to go home. Her senior-year trip to London was supposed to be life-changing, but by the last day, Wren’s perfectly-planned itinerary is in tatters. There’s only one item left to check off: breakfast at The World’s End restaurant. The one thing she can still get right.
The restaurant is closed for renovations—of course—but there’s a boy there, too. A very cute boy with a posh British accent who looks remarkably like the errant Prince Theo, on the run from the palace and his controlling mother. When Wren helps him escape a pack of tourists, the Prince scribbles down his number and offers her one favor in return. She doesn’t plan to take him up on it—until she gets to the airport and sees cancelled flights and chaos. A comet is approaching Earth, and the world is ending in eight days. Suddenly, that favor could be her only chance to get home to her family before the end of the world.
Wren strikes a bargain with the runaway prince: if she’ll be his bodyguard from London to his family’s compound in Santorini, he can charter her a private jet home in time to say goodbye. Traveling through Europe by boat, train, and accidentally stolen automobile, Wren finds herself drawn to the dryly sarcastic, surprisingly vulnerable Theo. But the Prince has his own agenda, one that could derail both their plans. When life as they know it will be over in days, is it possible to find a happy ending?
Title: The Prince and the Apocalypse (The Prince and the Apocalypse, #1)
Author: Kara McDowell
Publication Date: July 11, 2023
Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Apocalyptic
I’ve loved all of McDowell’s books that I’ve read (to the point of recommending them to everyone I know and their dog), however, I did not love this one. The story was interesting, but the characters and intensity of the book were not quite what I was wanting.
I liked that this felt like how the world would act if a world-ending phenomenon was about to happen. However, it made this book a bit high-stress to read. The characters were constantly in trouble and I was constantly stressed about their welfare and decision making.
Wren was a bit of a wishy-washy character. She was a girl who stuck to itineraries, but that was the only constant about her. She was constantly changing her mind about her friend and Theo and her feelings about everything. I know she’s a teenager and she’s in this very high-stress dilemma, but it was annoying honestly. But actually, I didn’t love Wren or Theo as characters. Theo lacked substance for me. And since I didn’t love either character, the story because a little harder to enjoy.
The ending was surprising, especially the epilogue. Maybe it shouldn’t have been, but I like the way McDowell handled things.
Overall, not my favorite McDowell book. I might pick up the next book because I want to see how Wren and Theo handle things, but it won’t be a top priority. I’ll probably rent it from the library and skim it. You can skip this one.