Dark and Magical // REVIEW: Three Dark Crowns by Kendrae Blake

Title: Three Dark Crowns (Three Dark Crowns #1)
Author: Kendrae Blake
Publication Date: September 22nd 2016
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 1/2 of the Three Dark Crowns Duology
I Got A Copy Through: Pan Macmillan India (THANK YOU!)
Blurb Description: Three sisters. One crown. A fight to the death.
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.
"Three Black Witches are born in a GlenSweet Little TripletsWill Never Be FriendsThree Black Witches, All fair to be seen,Two to devour,And one to be queen.”

If that doesn’t send CHILLS down your spine, well, READ IT AGAIN.

Ever since I heard about Three Dark Crowns, I just knew it would be the PERFECT book for me and I WAS DYING TO GET MY BOOK DRAGON HANDS (Claws? Talons?) on it!

When the lovely folks at Pan Macmillan India decided to grant my request to read this BEAUTIFUL book, I was SO thrilled and it resulted it me doing a (REALLY AWKWARD) penguin-esque Dance. Another hungry BookDragon, Chitra, also happened to get this awesome book on the same day and we decided to buddy read it together.

Three Dark Crowns is about three sisters – each with a different magical gift. One is a poisoner, one an elementalist and the third a naturalist. To win the throne they were born for, they need to kill their other sisters.

Going into the book, I honestly expected (wanted/ needed) it to revolve around three sisters willing to do anything to win the throne. I was also REALLY hoping they would be badass, and not strung up on some random boy (because the only thing better than #GirlPower is #QueenPower) and well, Three Dark Crowns delivered, but not in the ways I expected.

Things I LOVED about this book:

1.       THE MAGIC: I have ALWAYS thought that Magic is the COOLEST, and Three Dark Crowns merged three different kinds! Arsinoe is supposed to be a naturalist, who can bloom flowers and have animals as familiars. Mirabelle has control over all the elements – fire, wind, air and water (ALSO, LIGHTNING), and Katharine can’t die even with the strongest of poisons in her system.

2.       THE FAMILIES WITH THE MAGIC: This was one of the things I didn’t expect about Three Dark Crowns, but each queen had a family, and a following, of people with magic JUST LIKE THEIRS living in different parts of the Island. They were ruthless or caring or dominating respectively, but it was VERY cool to see such awesome secondary characters with smaller story arcs of their own.

3.       JULES: Arsinoe’s best friend and the most powerful elementalist in over 60 years, Jules is BADASS, a loyal friend and lover and POWERFUL and I LOVED HER SO MUCH. I was hoping for a plot twist that made her one of the Queens (no luck there) but she is by far my favourite character!

4.       THE PLOT: While the marketing of the book promises something slightly different, the plot of Three Dark Crowns is BEAUTIFUL. Not only is it three sisters battling it out to be the one true queen (there’s no battling in this book per se, but it will come in the next) but it’s also about island politics, families, power, friendship and suitors (or potential king consorts) and while it was about the queens, they weren’t the only three in the spotlight. I LOVED all the secondary characters, and I’m dying for more.


   1.       JOSEPH (GAAH): Jules’s one true love and childhood best friend (with Arsinoe) is, simply put, AN ASS. I hated every fiber of his being and I JUST WANT HIM GONE. No spoilers, but I’m sure you will feel the same way.

   2.       BADASS QUEENS OR SILLY PUPPETS? I went in expecting some seriously badass (think Katniss Everdeen or Aelin Galynthius) queens, but for most of the book, they were just puppets on strings, allowing their families or elders to push them around, telling them what to do. It wasn’t until the very ending that they became the queens they were MEANT TO BE, and while that excited me, it wasn’t enough.

I will MOST DEFINITELY be reading the second book in the duology, One Dark Throne.

A Magic-Filled, Adrenaline-Pumping Dark fight for the Crown that I would DEFINITELY recommend! 4 stars!
If you could be an elementalist, a poisoner or a naturalist, which would you pick?
Who are your favourite fictional sisters?
Would you entertain the possibility of killing your sisters to win a throne? 

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