Review: Three Dark Crowns, by Kendare Blake


Title: Three Dark Crowns (#1)

Author: Kendrare Blake

Genre: YA Fantasy

Published: 2016

Pages: 398

My Rating: 3/5 stars

Synopsis from Goodreads:

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.

Hello everyone,

and welcome to a new book review. Today I am talking about the debut novel Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake, a dark YA fantasy that deals with a rotten kingdom in which sisterhood is synonym for murder and hatred. I had high expectations for this one, probably because it was so hyped up. However, I only gave it 3/5 stars, and if you want to know why, keep on reading!


  • Plot: The plot was one of the main reasons why I was a bit disappointed. I found it to be extremely predictable, except in two instances. I knew what was going to happen throughout most of the book, and sometimes I also found myself being confused about certain elements, since they were not fleshed out well. Only the ending was surprising, and made me give it 3 stars instead of 2.75
  • Characters: characterization was okay. Sometimes I felt that side characters took over the protagonists (for example in Jules’ case) and other characters that had a major role in the novel were not detailed enough. Also, there was only one romance that I found to be credible, all the other ones were a bit too much of a stretch.
  • Writing: The writing is simplistic. Sometimes we get good metaphors, but it is nothing compared with some other adult or even YA fantasies (i.e. The Kiss of Deception). Overall, I found this book to be slightly mediocre, and I hope the sequel will make up for it.

These are all my non-spoilery thoughts about this book! Please let me know if you’ve read it in the comments below and what you thought of it.

Until next time,


**SPOILER-ALERT** SECTION – Do not read further if you don’t want to be spoiled.

Did you by any chance get as mad as I did about Jules’ stupidity about Joseph? I hated both of them when they were hanging out. She was so naive, and he was straight up cruel. It is obvious that the fact that Arsinoe burned the spell at the beginning of the book led him to like more Mirabella, but since it is not explicit, this still gives Joseph agency.

I knew Pyetr would throw Katharine off the mountain. I knew the bear would go crazy and Arsinoe would be blamed. I knew Katharine was not really dead. In short, the plot was very predictable to me, however I did enjoy the final cliffhanger, which leads me to think that I might read the final book of the duology. I am still not positive about it though…

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