First things first, it’s been an age since I’ve posted anything. I’ve been working through assignments for my masters and, sadly, it took priority sadly, but I’m going to be reading and researching a whole lot for dissertation so expect a surge in reviews and just terrible attempts at literary criticism. Okay, onto the review:
*I received this book free from netgalley for an honest review*
So I was sceptical about To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo. It comes across as just another standard fantasy retelling. But everyone knows I’m a sucker for retellings and to be honest, I loved it!
This book was just fun from start to finish and was the perfect way to end the uni exam season. It was a fast paced romp through a fantasy world where Sirens exist and they steal one heart every year to mark their birthdays, Lira only steals royal hearts being the princess of the sea herself. When her mother, the Sea Queen, reprimands her for taking a heart before her birthday she claims she must steal the heart of a sailor and tarnish her reputation as the Princes’ Bane. But Prince Elian just happens to be a siren killing royal pirate out for revenge.
I had so much fun reading this and I’m not sure how much of it was just relief at not having to do uni reading but even then I’d definitely recommend it as a fun, light read for any YA fantasy fans. It was fast paced, the romance was enjoyable and believable, and the take on the little mermaid story was fresh and interesting.
My favourite thing about this though was ugly monsters!!! Ugly mermaids, ugly mermen, the sirens were supposedly like horribly beautiful and that’s what I want more of! We need more ugly monster girls. I totally understand that not everyone will read the sirens as being monstrous but that was definitely my reading of it and I love it.
The only things I would complain about is that the world building felt a little lax to me. The characters spent a majority of their time sailing or in docks, and when they were on land visiting various kingdoms I felt like there wasn’t enough attention paid to the different cultures for me to find it believable. That might just be a side effect of the first person narrative though.
My one other problem was just that the ending felt rushed, I wanted more! I wanted to see how these worlds began to merge but there wasn’t enough explanation for me. I suppose it’s telling that my only problems with this book is that there wasn’t more of it!
To Kill a Kingdom took me back to my days of reading the Ingo series and obsessively watching every Pirates of the Caribbean film, I had so much fun reading it and it was the perfect palate cleanser to get me away from uni reading.