My rating: 5 of 5 Stars
How I Got It: Purchased eBook
Publication Date: September, 2017
Point of View: 3rd Person Present
You know, I gave the first book in this series three stars. I thought it was so strange and so oddly paced, and I just didn't know what to make of it. But . . . I've been thinking that I might need to up that rating, because the truth is, for MONTHS after reading it, I couldn't stop thinking about the characters and wondering what would happen to them next.
And as soon as this book came available for purchase, I HAD to buy it. Which leads me to think, you know what? I probably liked Three Dark Crowns more than I realized I did at the time.
WHAT I LOVED
Honestly, It was just amazing to dive back into this strange, magical, weirdly twisted world of the three queens and their island. The last book left off with such shocking revelations and cliff hangers, and I could hardly wait to see where their lives would take me next. I was not disappointed!
Now keep in mind--this is not an action-packed sort of story. I think people are disappointed if they go into this book expecting non-stop action and adventure, because it's really a much more thoughtful, elegant book than that. A lot of time is spent in set-up, arranging the characters and the storylines just so . . . but the resulting payoff in the major action sequences is SO DARN GOOD as a result!
Kendare Blake writes this complex story with this huge cast of characters with so much control and finesse. She pulls off completely unique personalities for each of her three queens, and while I definitely had my favorite of the bunch (Arsinoe forever!), I found myself bonding to all of them. Even Katharine . . . whose storyline definitely took the darkest turn in this book!
All the side characters are amazing too (with the exception of Joseph, whom I simply can't help but kind of hate, even when I try not to. But that's okay. I was satisfied where things ultimately went for him). I adored Billy and loved seeing his developing relationship with not only Arsinoe but also with (surprise surprise!) Mirabella. I didn't see that one coming, and it was definitely interesting to watch.
The climactic sequence of events did hinge on one or two small . . . conveniences. A few things that you kind of have to squint sideways at to believe would ACTUALLY happen that way. But you know what? I didn't care. Still don't care. I was turning pages so fast, was so eager to see where the story would go, and I can tell you right now, I am READY FOR BOOK 3!!! For which there is no release date yet. Sigh . . .
Ultimately, Kendare Blake provides a much-needed fresh voice and perspective to the YA fantasy genre. I am in love with this world she's created, in love with these characters, and can hardly wait to keep on journeying with them into the unknown!