Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Published: September 20th 2016 by HarperTeen
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.
If only it was that simple. Katharine is unable to tolerate the weakest poison, and Arsinoe, no matter how hard she tries, can’t make even a weed grow. The two queens have been shamefully faking their powers, taking care to keep each other, the island, and their powerful sister Mirabella none the wiser. But with alliances being formed, betrayals taking shape, and ruthless revenge haunting the queens’ every move, one thing is certain: the last queen standing might not be the strongest…but she may be the darkest.
I really wanted to love this book… but I was overly disappointed. This may have been my own fault because I hyped this up a lot to myself. I’m upset that I ultimately didn’t love this much as I wanted to, but the last 15% of the book is actually what gave it an extra star! There is a lot more wrong, for me, then there is right…
Firstly, there were WAY TOO many characters being introduced all at once! It made for a really confusing beginning, especially because I kept forgetting who everyone is, what their roles were and where they actually were. When I put the book down to do normal every day things and then came back to it, I actually had to go back some pages just to figure out where I was in the book – as well as who was who. I found it way too easy to forget which characters were with which queens and where these queens were in general geography of the book.
Another major issue I had with this book was that the plot was too slow for me. The book sort of plodded along at a less than average pace and it took ages for anything substantial to happen. Sometimes there would be something interesting, but it lacked the explanations to go with it, which then made it slow and confusing. I feel like there was definitely not enough information given about Beltane and I would have loved to have known more!
I also felt like the characters bled together sometimes? I sometimes forgot which characters I was actually looking at because the individual voices weren’t always there. This can become a major issue when dealing with so many different character voices and this definitely became an issue in this book for me!
The last sort of 15% of the book had me hooked all over again. I was questioning whether I had actually read the book right in the first place because it seemed to jump up quite a few notches pace wise! Things got really interesting really quickly and there are now so many misunderstandings that could be used to form the most amazing plot! Especially the twist at the end! I cannot even begin to tell you guys who exciting the twist as at the end… mostly because I was not even expecting it in the slightest! I am interested to see where this author is going to go with this!
Mostly I was underwhelmed by this book in a major way, which is a shame! I wish I had loved it more – which may have been the problem to begin with! I was hyping it up way too much! I’m glad I didn’t call DNF about half way through like I was planning, just for that ending! I gave this book 2.5/5 stars.
8 thoughts on “Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake”
I’m sorry to see you were disappointed with this book Lauren. I have Three Dark Crowns on my to-read list but still haven’t gotten around to it. I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews so I’m going into it with lowered expectations though. I’m hoping that will help.
Everyone seems to love the end so I guess that will be something look forwards to, are you planning to pick up the second book when it’s released.
Great review as well! 😀
The ending was great, the rest was pretty awful though… it was a close call on DNFing it!
Wow, that must have been bad then. I know how much you were looking forwards to this book as well.
It’s a shame, by based on the ending, I will be reading the second book… just not hyping it up as much
Maybe that’ll help. I sometimes find by going into books with lowered expectations I end up enjoying them more. Maybe that’ll be the case with you and the second book of this series.
great review! I have read this but not yet reviewed it. I found the very beginning good, the middle (most of the book) very meh and the ending fantastic, although I did guess the twist, I didn’t actually expect it to happen.Ye Luke and Luca (who is female) they kinda of played the same role for different queens I got very confused between them. I liked the elemental queen for most of it, until near the end, she went from my fave character to my worst. I too will only be reading the next book based on the ending. It is a shame it didn’t live up to all the hype, although I had read a fair few bad reviews before I read it so was expecting it not be be amazing.
It wasn’t so much that it was slow, it was that a lot of what happened was pointless and didn’t help the plot move forward.
Once again great review 🙂
I really struggled with the beginning because there were just way too many people being introduced all at once and it was difficult to keep track of who’s who. I would put the book down and forget where I was and which characters were currently in the picture. It’s a shame that it didn’t live up to the hype – but I have heard some extremely mixed reviews where some people absolutely loved it and others not so much, so I guess it is one of those books. The ending has made the second book promising, so I hope t lives up to that promise – but I won’t be hyping it up like last time! Thanks for stopping by 🙂