Three Dark Crowns is a book I knew I needed to read because the premise- I mean, come on three sisters vying for a crown- what's not to like? The three are raised apart and trained from an early age to kill the others. How twisted is that? I mean the premise had me right there and the enthusiastic reviews of bloggers I trust sealed the deal. So I went into this with high expectations and it mostly delivered.
The three sisters are Katherine (poisoner), Arsinoe (naturalist) and Mirabella (elemental). Each one has their unique abilities- for example Katherine as a poisoner is immune to poisons, or is supposed to be- and they each have factions or noble families backing them. The poisoners have been in power for a hundred years but things look grim as Katherine is not showing much aptitude. She crafts poisons just fine, but her unique ability to withstand poison doesn't seem to be there. Her backers therefore have to take steps t improve her chances.
Arsinow has a similar problem as her talent has also not manifested, whereas Mirabella is strong and favored to win. Again each girl has a faction and as the story progresses we get insights into not only the girls but the forces behind them, and let's just say there are moments when they are not all in sync. The characterizations are strong here and each girl has a distinct personality- I was looking to pick a candidate- and to the authors credit I had a hard time. I liked all three of them in different ways. And the supporting cast for the most part were spot on as well.
This is one of those books where the underpinning of the world is not completely understood. It's not clear what the relationship of the island they call home is with the mainland- the island seems to be a land apart? This is never really explained, and there are a lot of little hints about the nature of the place, but not enough answers.I went through this book thinking it was a standalone, so as the end approached and there were lots of loose ends I was not sure there would be a resolution. Sure enough there is another one coming later this year.
I do feel some of the events towards the end were contrived a bit in order to set up future conflicts. And I found the end to be somewhat anti- climactic, after all the buildup- some of that may be due to my expecting a standalone- but still I was not entirely satisfied with the end. And while the beginning sucked me right in there are a lot of characters so in the early going I was a little confused. But other than that this was a fast paced and fun read and I enjoyed the scheming .
Sorry you didn't enjoy this as much as you thought you would :( I'm personally dying to read it, despite the mostly negative reviews; it just looks SO good!ReplyDelete
Great review :)
Amy @ A Magical World Of Words
I actually did like it, but yes it was a little underwhelming in the sense that the big conclusion wasn't there- lots of set up. Still a good book.Delete
Bummer about the ending being anti-climatic :( I'm glad that it mostly delivered though! I have had this one on my shelf since BEA16 *sigh* Hopefully I'll get to it this year!ReplyDelete
It was a little anti- climactic, and I've seen other reviews say that too. Needed a little more action.Delete
The premise of this one has me totally hooked too: I just know that it'll be a fun, gripping read and the perfect way to while away a Sunday afternoon. I'm excited to finally read something by Kendare Blake too, especially now that I know she's so good at crafting characters!ReplyDelete
Endings are so tough to get right. It's so disappointing when a book full of action and intrigue has an anti-climactic ending! Hopefully book two will raise the stakes a bit more.
I think you'll like it. It needs more action and I think more payoff but I like the chars and getting to know them, I had trouble picking a favorite.Delete
This was my first Blake too!
Oh I hat qhen I think a book is a stand alone and find out it is a series. The worst! Sorry this wasn't everything you thought. Hope you like the next one more if you get to it. Great review!ReplyDelete
I probably should have checked sooner but to be honest for some reason I was just under the impression it was standalone. Good thing it's not though lol as we don't get a resolution.Delete
You know, this book hasn't gotten the best reception, to be honest. So I'm not even surprised to see that you didn't fare well either.ReplyDelete
Hasn't it? I've only seen a few reviews although they were mixed. It has tons of potential and is written good, but the payoff... kinda lacking.Delete
The premise does sounds appealingly twisted and it seems it was indeed scheming :) ooooh LOVE THOS! BUT OMG it drives me crazy when a book hooks me up from the beginning just to let me down with a blah end! But you are right it does happen of ten with series. At least it was fast paced and fun. Thanks for the review. I was curious about this one!ReplyDelete
It is twisted, and the opening... definitely got my attention. It's a good read but I would have liked more payoff.Delete
The concept of this one is interesting especially Katherine not being immune to poison which does put her at a disadvantage. Having lots of characters is likely to confuse me though!ReplyDelete
Yeah they all seem to have advantages and disadvantages, which I liked. I was hoping to pick a favorite and had a hard time, although I MIGHT go with Mirabella. But then I liked Katherine too lol.Delete
I think I managed to grab this for my Kindle one day last month for $1.99 - that's why I couldn't pass it up. I like the concept of it and I tend to like my YA dark and creepy so I think this will prove to be a decent read for me as well.ReplyDelete
Ooh good pick up! It's definitely worth a read- and it is a bit dark!Delete
It sounds interesting and the premise is definitely intriguing, if rather dark. I think I'll put it on the "maybe" list until I see reviews for the next book or two in the series.ReplyDelete
It is a bit dark, but not overly so. I can definitely see waiting though as good as it was the payoff was lacking and I'm hoping book two picks up the pace.Delete
Sounds like a combination between the Hunger Games and Game of Thrones.ReplyDelete
Good analogy! Kind of- the GoT comparison is apt, and yeah HG too since they have to battle. Yeah you're on to something there! Good one sentence description!Delete
Sounds like an interesting premise for a book but I promised myself no more series until I finish a few :)ReplyDelete
I hear you. It's a good read but not essential?Delete
Sorry to hear the ending was a bit of a flop when compared to the rest of the book. I hate when books sort of feel like they're building for later on to the detriment of the book you're currently reading. I heard mixed things about this one and I do still want to read but at least I'm a bit more aware of what I'm in for.ReplyDelete
The ending was disappointing because there is a lot of set up and anticipation, but no actual payoff. I know it's a series but I would have liked more- maybe SOME resolution.Delete
I saw this book in the bookshop the other day and was really intrigued by the premise! I nearly bought it, but didn't end up doing for a pretty stupid reason - they had it in three different colours (one for each sister i assume) and I couldn't decide which variation to go for!ReplyDelete
Awesome review! I'll have to read this soon :)
I like the idea of the different variations! I haven't seen that, although the physical copy IS nice. I like the cover. I hope you give it a shot, would like to see what you think.Delete
Probably not one for me - I do like my answers to all the questions!ReplyDelete
Yeah there are a lot of unanswered ?'s on this one- definitely a wait and see conclusion.Delete
I like how you pointed out what you liked and what left you hanging and wanted explained. Hmmm - my reaction and whether or not I'll read it now, but I think I'll probably will. I do think sometimes for an author, it takes a while to get the ball rolling in a series. The first book is almost introductory and the author gets better as it continues.ReplyDelete
Good point. and thanks! I hope you try it- would welcome your thoughts. And it has a lot going for it- the scheming is kinda fun. And hopefully it's not a spoiler that the girls are maybe nicer than the factions so you have that issue as well.Delete
I really like this author and plan to give this book a try. Will you read the next book? Hope you liked The 100 premiere.ReplyDelete
This was my first book by her. I will read the next one- it has me sufficiently curious that I have to know where it goes next. :) And I loved The 100- did you see it??Delete
I do really want to read this one. It's an interesting premise. I'm glad there is a second one though. Hopefully all will be interested.ReplyDelete
Yeah me too! Go read it- I'd love to see more reviews of it. :)Delete
Interesting, I haven't read this one yet (still have a couple of her other series I have not completed, and I really should before I tackle another one!) but I've felt the same way about her endings, to the point that a couple of her books did not even feel complete to me. It was obvious that she was setting things up for the sequel.ReplyDelete
~Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum
I didn't realize she had so many other books. Interesting though- that must be her writing style. My concern is if the 2nd book is similarly inconclusive I would be quite tested in my patience lol. I'm assuming this is a trilogy. Maybe I should check. :)Delete
This book totally passed me by last year. It wasn't until the end of year favorites lists that I learned about it. I enjoyed her Anna books, though. I thought it was a standalone, too. Good to know.ReplyDelete
If you like her writing you'd probably like this? I liked the writing. Interesting chars. Just need a little more payoff...Delete
I loved Kendare Blake's Anna Dressed in Blood and really like the premise of this. Gearing the ending towards setting up a sequel is a bit disappointing, but glad that overall this was a pretty good read!ReplyDelete
The premise had me. :) I mean how could I not? It was good overall- I just felt like it needed a little more resolution. Could still set up a sequel but give us a little something.Delete
Glad you mostly liked it! I agree, I could not pick a favorite sister. At all. I liked them all, but for very different reasons. I do agree completely about the world- but I am also thinking (hoping?) that there will be more revealed in the future book(s) (seriously, is it a trilogy? Idk. There are only two books on Goodreads but that means nothing, I suppose.) Great review :)ReplyDelete
I liked it more than my review let on- I went back and read it and I seem kinda negative but I really did like it! The only thing for me was I was expecting the big throwdown at the very end and we didn't get it -well sorta we did, but it's my own fauly for not realizing there was a 2nd book - so my expectations might have been more reasonable. I thought the characters were all good though. Did you like some of the supporting characters more than the mains? I did lol.Delete
I've only seen the two as well. I don't know???
Hmmmm. It sounds like you mostly enjoyed this one for which I'm glad! I'm sorry you thought it was a standalone!!!! It's a good point though and I think I need to add a 'series' info somewhere into my reviews!ReplyDelete
The next book is One Dark Throne and is pegged to be published in September this year. I can't wait for it and I hope you will give it a try too!
I did- I kinda picked at some things but overall I did like it. And I should have checked GR- I don't know why I didn't!Delete
Sept. not too far off I guess- and I will definitely read it. I liked the twist at the end and I really want to see the sisters either ally together and clean house, or have it out (I'd rather they ally).
I'd rather they ally too!!!! But it will be interesting to see what happens. Not having read anything by Blake before I'm not sure on the sort of author that she is so I don't know what to expect!!!Delete
I was disappointed in this one. I, too, was sucked in by the beginning and the three sisters, but then I just got bored. Too many view points, nothing happens, leading up to a big cliffhanger. I doubt I will continue.ReplyDelete
I did think not enough happened- especially with ALL the lead up and then everyone goes back home. I was like, that's it?? I wanted more- but I did like it.Delete
This sounds ... interesting. I'm actually not sure how I feel about the concept itself, and normally this kind of thing would be right up my alley. I'd still think about considering it, but if it feels like things are a bit contrived, I definitely think I'll pass. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!ReplyDelete
~ Michelle @ FaerieFits
I hate it when I go into a book thinking it's a standalone and then it turns out to be a series---it totally messes with your expectations. But I'm glad that you mostly liked this one. Definitely go read my spoiler-filled discussion and let me know your predictions about what will happen next!ReplyDelete
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction
I'll confess I often find fantasy books "confuse" a bit in their quest to explain (or not explain?) their worlds. Maybe it's partially to keep readers interested in coming back to the story in book two? I'm still interested in this one, so thanks so much for reviewing it, Greg!ReplyDelete
I am skipping this one because none of the bloggers I follow have said they loved it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. :)ReplyDelete
I was truly excited about this one at first but it's gotten such mixed reviews that I'm just not sure anymore. I'm definitely curious about the sisters, their powers and the politics/drama but I feel like the lack of world-building would bother me. I loved reading your thoughts on this one^^ReplyDelete