Book Reviews · The Reading

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

three-dark-crownsTitle: Three Dark Crowns
Author: Kendare Blake
Published: September 20th, 2016 by HarperTeen

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When kingdom come, there will be one.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born—three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.

The Review:

This is my first book by Kendare Blake, and while I didn’t know what to expect, I really wanted to love it. But sadly, it didn’t meet my expectations. I blame the hype.

I think one of the good things about Three Dark Crowns is the distinctive main characters. Katherine, Arsinoe, and Mirabella each has their own unique qualities that made it so easy for the readers to differentiate them from each other. That doesn’t mean that all of them have good qualities, they can get annoying at times, but at least we know who’s who 😀 . It’s interesting to see each Queen react differently to having to kill each other. We have one who doesn’t want to kill her sisters, one who really wants to, and one who (I think) just doesn’t care?

Having said that, I also have to say that I didn’t ‘root’ for any of them to win. I didn’t find any of them relatable. I don’t know… Maybe it just doesn’t really sit well with me that in order for someone to become queen they have to kill their sisters. Because I have sisters, and I don’t want to kill them. Not all the time anyway 😉 . Okay, you can say that ‘hey! they haven’t seen each other in years! They don’t know each other! That’s just the way their world works!’ Fine. But don’t they want to get to know their sisters before killing them?  But okay, I can get past that.

The multiple POVs and different locations in each chapter made the reading experience more interesting, once you get used to it. I liked the different settings and the different ways each ‘clan’ deals with the ascension of the new queen. But, I also think that what could’ve been a great story, is clouded with too much focus on the romance. I wasn’t expecting that! I thought Three Dark Crowns would be about the three girls plotting to kill each other.

My biggest issue with Three Dark Crowns is that it is SO slow at the beginning. It took me a long time to get through the first three-quarters of the book and I was seriously considering DNF-ing it. By the time the pace picked up towards the end, it did get very exciting and plot twists were popping up that I didn’t see coming, but I wasn’t as invested in the story as I would’ve been if more than the first half didn’t bore me so much. The main characters are also surrounded by a huge set of side characters that at times it was difficult to keep track of them, save for a few interesting characters like Natalia Arron. I do have some questions about the world, like the mainland and the suitors, but I think this review is getting too long already.

I know it sounds like I really dislike the book, but even though I didn’t love it, I didn’t hate it, either. The first 3/4 of the book was a chore to get through, but the last part made me curious enough to read the next book. I’ll probably just borrow it from a friend or the library, though.

“No one really wishes to be a queen.”
Kendare Blake, Three Dark Crowns

2 Stars

Signature - Glamor Style


12 thoughts on “Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

  1. ah I’ve heard similar things about this sadly- I actually don’t get why it was so hyped, because so many reviewers were disappointed with this. It’s a shame it’s clouded by the romance and that you didn’t root for any of them. And I’ve heard so many people complain it’s too slow!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I actually wasn’t planning on reading it, but it was recommended to me several times by my friends so I did. It was definitely slow at the beginning, but I guess some people like that? Because I’ve seen many good reviews on Goodreads 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, maybe you can try reading an excerpt or borrow the book? Who knows, you might like it. Because I’ve seen a lot of good reviews on Goodreads, so I’m definitely in the minority. But the beginning really is slow, though, so if you don’t like ‘slow burns’ then maybe Three Dark Crowns isn’t for you?
      Thank you 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You’re not the first to say Three Dark Crowns doesn’t live up to the hype, and to be honest I’m almost afraid to pick it up now. And slow pace for so long? Kuddos to you for not DNFing it! Great review, I will approach this one with care. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ooh, I’m really sorry that you didn’t enjoy it! I hate it when books you think you’re going to love disappoint you 😦 I personally really liked the book, and I think a lot of the hype was because of the way that it was (incorrectly) marketed. It seemed like it was going to be a book about action, when in reality it was 9/10 politics and 1/10 action. Luckily, I like reading about both of those things, so it wasn’t really an issue with me; but I can definitely see how the book could disappoint!

    Fleur @ FranklyBooks just posted 5 REASONS WHY I HATE GOODREADS

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you liked it! I think I would’ve enjoyed it a lot more if the beginning wasn’t so slow 😦
      It is really disappointing when you’re really looking forward to reading a book and it ends up being not as good as you hoped, but I guess that’s the risk of reading hyped books?
      Thank you for the comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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