Read + Review — Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

In the kingdom of Fennbirn, a set of triplets are sired. Each girl is sheltered away to the palaces of Rolanth, Wolf Spring, and Indrid Down. Each infant has a specific gift; war, naturalistic abilities, or the immunity to the most deadly poison. Our story centers on the most recent triplets. Katharine, the poisoner, is awaiting her moment of triumph over her sisters with a stomach churning full of tainted foods in her towers of Greavesdrake Manor. Mirabella, the sister with the war gift, wishes to fulfill the role that her people seek. Arsinoe, the naturalist, struggles with the so-called gift which is not making its face known. On the night of their sixteen birthday, the three must fight to rule over Fennbirn in the majority of their people; the poisoners, naturalists, or people of violence. Two shall be devoured, with one rising towards the throne as Queen.
Madame Blake, your writing style is exceptional. At first I disliked the almost cliche description of these future queens. Katharine, the labeled poisoner, was weak and timid. Mirabella, the queen with the gift of war, was stone cold and rude. Arsinoe, the naturalist, was flaky and distracted. But as the book progressed, Blake’s ability for character development really shined. The stone cold melted into a warm heart of gold, the prevailed over their own conscience and the flighty became strong. The surprises really went past my expectations and pleased me.
Katharine’s character development has jostled me to the core. I pitied her in the beginning of the book, yet by the end I was furious with her. Her true colors were revealed and it made me sad yet excited to where Blake would take her character in the sequel.


Reviewed by Veda, Grade 11, Twin Hickory Area Library

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