Callum has had an unremarkable life working in a call center in California. He doesn’t have a lot of friends and he has always felt his quirkiness is an acquired taste. His father died years ago, but one interesting fact about Callum that no one has ever believed is that he is in the line of succession, although a ways down, for the British throne, as his grandmother is the Queen of England. After a royal scandal, Callum finds himself being flown across the ocean, as he is now next in line for the crown.
Callum arrives to a media frenzy, as the entire country of England is not pleased with an American heir, and they constantly highlight all of his faults, most obviously his clumsiness. But despite the icy reception, Callum vows to help his grandmother save the monarchy. The only unlikely friend Callum finds is Oliver, the Prime Minister of England. The men forge a tentative friendship and, while Callum has always been attracted to women, he finally understands why he has always wanted to impress men as well. And now, all he can think about is Oliver’s hands and lips on him.
Oliver’s life and job keeps him busy and his ex-husband got tired of it all. Oliver finds himself not only attracted to Callum, but charmed by him as well. Oliver and Callum have more in common than they realize, but a relationship between them is impossible, as the monarchy must remain politically neutral at all times. Oliver and Callum will either crash and burn spectacularly or change the path of a nation with their love story.
Royal romance is trendy these days and An Unlikely Heir pulls from that trope with a little different story. Callum was not brought up to be an heir and didn’t spend much time with the royal family after his father died. It’s a huge life change for him to now be next in line for the throne. He sees how the family scandal has affected his grandmother, the queen, and he wants to help her. But Callum hasn’t lived his life being groomed to be a royal heir and the public is not happy about that.
Callum finds a confidante in the Prime Minister, Oliver, and they just get each other. Their talks turn into daily texts and jokes until one night where they reach for more. But Oliver knows he can’t be in a relationship with the Prince, as it’s a huge conflict of interest and he shuts Callum out. And it takes Oliver a little while to realize that he not only misses Callum’s friendship, but that he has fallen in love with him.
This story is a slow burn of getting these men together. I do like a faster moving romance myself and, when it is slower, I do like to feel that intense chemistry, which didn’t come through as much here. There are attempts to add more to this story with descriptions on the political topics they debated, but that didn’t hold my attention, and the drama at the end of the book didn’t fit in as smoothly for me.
I did like how Callum finally found the person that loved him for exactly who he was and had no interest in changing anything about him. This is the start of a new series of unlikely pairs and there was enough here that I will be checking out the next in the series.