A Princess of Roumania - Paul Park
Another bookswapping experience, if I recall correctly, this one the first in a series of four books.

The basic premise of A Princess of Roumania is that beloved by many books for teens - our protagonist Miranda Popescu, herself a teenager, is not what she seems and is instead really royalty from elsewhere. In addition to this, her two closest friends are not really just her friends but loyal subjects sent to protect her.

So far so good, except I found the prose incredibly hard to get into and the character of Miranda so unlikable that frankly I didn't care when she was placed in peril. Which is never a good sign for a standalone book, let alone the first of a series.

If you're so inclined, the series continues in The Tourmaline, but I know I won't be continuing after failing to get through this volume without a strong desire to throw it at the wall about a third of the way in...