Book Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake


Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 416
Released: September 20th 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen

My Rating: 3 of 5 stars


Fans of acclaimed author Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood will devour her latest novel, a dark and inventive fantasy about three sisters who must fight to the death to become queen.

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

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 dark queens are born in a glen, sweet little triplets will never be friends.

Three dark sisters all fair to be seen, two to devourand one to be Queen.”

Three Dark Crowns is my first book by Kendare Blake and I can’t quite say that I liked it. It was deliciously dark and unique but something about it put me off. I tried and failed to write a proper review so instead I’ll break it down into two parts (what I liked about the book and what I didn’t)

✨What I Liked ✨

  • The world: I’m a sucker for good world building and this book serves it up
  • The concept of the story: the whole premise of three sisters competing in a deadly tournament for a crown is so intruiging so I give Kendare Blake props for just coming up with the idea.
  • The magic system: I can see Kendare Blake put a lot of thought into the magic system. I simply love how unique the idea of three queens is; a poisoner, a naturalist and an elemental. Its like a game of rock, paper, scissors.
  • The dramatic ending: The ending was deliciously dramatic, which was good because it made up for the relatively slow pacing of the story.

What I Didn’t Like

  • The writing: Three Dark Crowns was written in the present tense with the character point of views in the third person and honestly that combination was what ruined the book for me. The tense was so disconcerting that a lot of the time I kept getting distracted by the writing instead of focusing on the actual story. I get trying to give your book a unique “voice” but Kendare made a huge mistake on this one.
  • The character’s: when I signed up for this I expected violent, greedy, bloodthirsty sisters. Sort of like a three person hunger games. What I got was a couple of love sick teenage girls. Don’t get me wrong, once in a while the characters would break through the veil of shallowness (yes that’s a word) and you’d glimse some ruthlessness/cunning in them but those moments were few and far between.
  • The POV’s: the point of views is also one of the major problems I had with the way the book was written. This book has such a large cast of characters and I guess juggling all of them must have been difficult but this could have been done better.
  • The slow pacing: 80% of this book was the three main characters worrying about what would happen in the last 20% of the book. So disappointing.

Have you read or are you planning on reading Three Dark Crowns? If so what do you think?



4 thoughts on “Book Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

    1. I know! I feel almost cheated, the description makes you picture something completely different from what the book is. You should still give it a try someday though, maybe you’ll end up loving it…

      Liked by 1 person

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