To Kill a Kingdom Review

Book Reviews
***Disclaimer: I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Opinions are my own. Just to be safe, this may contain some spoilers or spoiler-y hints.***         

 

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“Technically, I’m a murder, but I like to think that’s one of my better qualities.” Alexandra Christo, To Kill a Kingdom

 

To Kill a Kingdom Review

By: Yours truly – Rae

 

As always, the whisper of a YA fairy tale retelling fills me with dread and excitement. I’ve always adored fairy tales and The Little Mermaid, both Disney and Andersen versions, inspired numerous adventures as a kid and during college writing sprints. After receiving an ARC of To Kill a Kingdom, I took a deep breath and dived right in *pun possibly intended* and let me tell you… I was BEDAZZLED. Ladies and Gentlemen… I have a new favorite book and a top pick for 2018. Alexandra – thank you. Now let me tell you why.

I wasn’t being sold anything when it comes to a good character and a bad character. In fact, all the characters have bluntly obvious dark sides and that just made it oh so better. Even more so, all the characters? Bad. Deliciously bad. The prince, Elian, is a pirate who kills sirens, doesn’t want the crown, and feels most at home among a motely crew of misfits. *cue the dreamy sigh* The princess, Lira, is a siren, murderer of – wait for it – princes, and in line for the watery throne only to be constantly bullied – a nice term here and not what I really want to say – by her mother the Sea Witch. Throw in those wonderful side characters from Lira’s cousin Kahlia, best friend, crew, crew, and you got a cast that is relatable, loveable, and even redeemable if you see it fit to redeem them.

The Little Mermaid wasn’t sole focus here and I loved that. Surprising, I know. Anyway, I could pick out key parts and characters but To Kill a Kingdom became a beauty all its own – with a fairy tale twist! I loved how Christo played off the desires of fairy tales too. The characters mocked, ignored, and outright denied the stories and yet followed them because some part of them believed in the impossible. Me? I want to believe in the impossible. Hence why I’m tempted to go out to sea, fling myself in, and see what happens. Okay… maybe not but I can still dream right?

I could continue with the review and rave about the smooth plot, beautiful scenery descriptions, flow of the voice, and character growth, but honestly you just need to read To Kill a Kingdom and decide for yourself.

 

Need your copy of To Kill a Kingdom? Buy links can be found on Christo’s site.

 

My rating: 5/5

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Blog Tour

Breakwater.jpgBreakwater
By Catherine Jones Payne
Genre: YA Fantasy/Mermaids
Release Date: May 30th 2017
Fathom Ink Press

Summary from Goodreads:

A red tide is rising.

Jade, a seventeen-year-old mermaid in the underwater city of Thessalonike, finds her world upended when her fiancé murders a naiad. As tensions surge between the mer and the naiads, Jade must navigate murky waters, negotiating her responsibilities as the daughter of one of the king’s most trusted advisors and her budding friendship with a naiad. But as she tries to fight the tide of anger in a city that lives for scandal, she discovers that danger lurks in every canal. If she fails to mend the divisions between their worlds, the upwelling of hate will threaten to rip apart everything she loves.

 

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Lauren Munoz Maccann

Copyright 2011 Steven Noreyko

Author Links:

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The Glass Mermaid Review

Book Reviews

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The Glass Mermaid Review

By: Rae

 

“I was the last of us. And my time was nearly done.”

– Poppy Lawless, The Glass Mermaid

 

Poppy Lawless presents a timeless novella that asks, “What would you sacrifice to save the one you love?” Ultimately I cannot answer that in this review for fear of giving away any spoilers. I can say the book and the characters are inspiring when it comes to both whimsical and earthy emotions. The blend of fairy tale, legend, family, and individualism spoke to me and caused a lot of nostalgic musings.

The Glass Mermaid starts off a month into the plot, backtracking here and there to give a background on the main characters Kate and Cooper and how they have interacted previously. Kate is the last of her kind, literally. As a mermaid without a home and little magic left, she treads carefully in life, only taking real pleasure when she walks the beach at sunset looking for gifts from Lake Eric – pieces of glass she makes jewelry with. There was something heartbreaking about her timelessness. It was as if she was going to disappear before the page would end. I wanted her to live, to be happy. I wanted to know why she was the last. But before any of my questions were answered (and luckily for me they are!) Cooper is introduced.

 

If I thought Kate and her old age quality was heart wrenching, Cooper pulled a few strings I didn’t know existed. How can you really accept death? Accept that everything you wanted to do was gone in the blink of an eye? I worried Cooper would be too one dimensional but he surprised me with his fierceness, his desire for life, that lived through his paintings. If Kate is the lore and hope of this novella than Cooper was created to show that it is useless to have regrets.

Together Kate and Cooper prove that there is always a chance for a second beginning. The only problem I had with this tale was its abrupt ending. I knew it was coming but the last page had me blinking in a stupor. While the epilogue cleared some things up, there is an absence of time that bothered me and everything felt so rushed to reach the conclusion. Because it was a short piece there is bound to be time holes. I was also a tiny bit disappointed we couldn’t see more of Cooper and Kate’s respective backgrounds. As a fan of fairy tales I was chomping at the bit to know more mermaid lore. Upon further reflection I feel like while there were holes I was able to daydream along with the story and reach my own conclusions. I felt anticipation on every page, a hunger to know more, and that to me says a lot about this tale.

In the end, I was satisfied and would suggest The Glass Mermaid to anyone looking for a short, magical, and romantic read on life.

 

 

To find out more about Poppy and her fairy tales, click here!

Check out an interview with Poppy here!