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The Kingdom by Jess Rothenberg

Welcome to the Kingdom... where 'Happily Ever After' isn't just a promise, but a rule.

Glimmering like a jewel behind its gateway, The Kingdom(TM) is an immersive fantasy theme park where guests soar on virtual dragons, castles loom like giants, and bioengineered species--formerly extinct--roam free.

Ana is one of seven Fantasists, beautiful "princesses" engineered to make dreams come true. When she meets park employee Owen, Ana begins to experience emotions beyond her programming including, for the first time... love.

But the fairytale becomes a nightmare when Ana is accused of murdering Owen, igniting the trial of the century. Through courtroom testimony, interviews, and Ana's memories of Owen, emerges a tale of love, lies, and cruelty--and what it truly means to be human.

Favorite Quotes:

“Like Wendy, John, and Michael Darling on the night Peter Pan taught them how to fly - I think one happy thought. In my pocket, I have a knife.”
“In the end, it does not matter what a story is about. It only matters who gets to tell it.”

Book Links:


The moment I saw this cover, I knew that I had to have it. The Kingdom by Jess Rothenberg is absolutely amazing. I loved every bit of this book. The way I pitch it to people is Disneyland meets Westworld. 

Ana is one of seven fantasists. Fantasists are hybrid beings that are beautiful princesses in The Kingdom Park. They are programmed to make dreams come true. As the reader soon discovers, Ana is put on trial for killing a park employee. The reader gets to see the trial documents along with going back several months before the current events of the trial. I loved getting to know Ana and her sisters. They definitely lead very interesting lives being a hybrid human android.

I adored Ana. I thought the way she saw life was so pure and innocent. It was hard not to be on her side the whole time. Even though we get to know the other characters, the story is really about Ana and her journey to the trial and what she is dealing with during the trial. Being a Fantasist may sound like a glorious life but it is not. We get to see inside those glass walls.

This story is told through the past and the present. The present is through documents of interviews, the trial, and video footage. The past is told in a first person perspective. These two things worked so well together. I thought it was really easy to follow and really enjoyable. I love unique books like this. Rothenberg did such a great job writing this novel. I can’t wait to see more.

I am really hoping that Rothenberg will do a sequel or a companion novel because I am not done with this world. I want so much more!

About the Author:

JESS ROTHENBERG is a writer and freelance editor who grew up in Charleston, South Carolina. A former editor of books for young readers, including the #1 International Bestselling Vampire Academy series, Jess lives in New York City with her husband, son, and cat-who-thinks-he’s-a-dog, Charlie. Her debut novel for teens, The Catastrophic History of You & Me, has been translated into more than a dozen languages. 

To find out more, visit www.jessrothenberg.comor follow Jess on Instagram and Twitter at @jessrothenberg.

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