Title: Three Dark Crowns
Author: Kendare Blake
Series Status: 1st book in the Three Dark Crowns Series
# of pages: 398
My rating: 2.5/5 stars
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.
I so badly wanted to enjoy this book and went into it thinking I would love this book but as I began reading it I ended up liking it less and less the further I went.
Starting with my main problem was how incredibly slow this story was. The beginning half of this book had so little going on that I kept setting the book down before finally pushing myself to get further into the story. As I continued further into the story, the pacing got better but by that point the development for the characters still wasn’t there for me and I was quickly losing interest.
The story follows our three queens and their preparation for this upcoming battle to see who survives. Starting with Katharine, who was definitely the least developed out of the three to me, her demeanor was so strange to me because she didn’t even seem fully there for most of the story. She would be upset about something but make no physical reaction to anything or even be upset. It felt like she was just present in every scene but none of the scenes with her created any emotional spark or anything to define her as a main character in any way. Then there is Mirabella, who is basically good at everything and pretty, she felt like she was there to remind me that this was a fantasy book. Her power was so strong and controlling over everything but this amounted to her always using her power in her scenes which caused her development to feel only as far as her power. Finally we have Arsinoe, who is yet another one with little power and obsessed with her friends relationships, she seemed to actually be the most developed out of them all and her brief beginnings of relationships and development peaked my interest but it was overall a rather brief moment since most of her story is also glossed over.
I wish I could say that there was something about the story that hooked me and made me interested in reading further but I felt like the world building was underdone and the pacing was so agonizing that I could not get into the story. I’m also sad because I was so excited to see a world about bad ass women fighting and this matriarchal society ruling but instead the story was so slow with little going on that I didn’t get that.
Overall I really hoped to enjoy this story but I just didn’t.