I initially decided to only review first books or a whole series, not books in the middle of a series. The thing is, One Dark Throne left me… unsettled. I feel the need to discuss what I read and I would really like to hear your opinion on the matter. Please note, that this review will be by no means spoiler-free.
Book: One Dark Throne (Three dark crowns #2)
Author: Kendare Blake
Pages: 464 (Paperback)
Publisher: Harper Teen
Published: 19th September, 2017
With the unforgettable events of the Quickening behind them and the Ascension Year underway, all bets are off. Katharine, once the weak and feeble sister, is stronger than ever before. Arsinoe, after discovering the truth about her powers, must figure out how to make her secret talent work in her favor without anyone finding out. And Mirabella, once thought to be the strongest sister of all and the certain Queen Crowned, faces attacks like never before—ones that put those around her in danger she can’t seem to prevent.
Well, what shall I say? I was not a fan of the first book. To be honest, I bought this one mostly for the cover. And because I thought it might get better. And it got better… a bit.
The first part was quite slow. I could not remember everything that had happened in Three Dark Crowns, but the three POVs made it easy to remember, because the characters remember themselves. I liked how easy this was. But the problem is also in these three POVs. I have to admit, I don’t like Katharine. I haven’t liked her anyways, but now? Nope, she can just go away. I know she is not herself, but I got so annoyed with her and her chapters. Especially when Nicolas comes around. What to we know of Nicolas except for his being a mainlander and a suitor of Katharine’s? He thinks Katharine is hot. And that’s it. For a suitor who then marries one of the main characters, he only plays a really small role.
Arsione’s suitors don’t even make it this far because they get killed off after two pages. Well, okay. Oh yeah, and Nicolas dies as well. So, the problem with the suitors being in the way of the *real* ships has been solved. Please and thank you. But what I was wondering is, how does the mainland react to this? They send their sons to marry a queen, most of them die, they are notified and that’s it? Is no wealthy mainland dad going to send anything? no? Okay. It’s just your sons dying.
With Mirabella I have mixed feelings. I constantly rolled my eyes in book one, but she is so much better in book two. Even though she’s still lusting after Joseph, she comes to accept that he will only ever really love Jules. She gets one suitor/taster, who comes in the person of Billy, a mainlander who is completely in love with Arsinoe. When they both think, Arsinoe died, they decide to marry to avenge her and because they both loved her. There is no time to think about it, it just seems okay for the two of them.
When it turns out Arsinoe is not dead at all, Mirabella just cancels their engagement and that’s it. I liked that and I also liked the sisterly dynamic that slowly grows between the two sisters. They begin to really love each other and because everything in Fennbirn goes to hell, they decide to flee the island, Billy in tow. And because where Arsinoe goes, Jules goes as well, she and her beloved Joseph join them, even though Jules could have joined the warriors because she is not only a naturalist, but has the war gift as well.
And right when I thought „Wow, the last 1/4 of the book is really good“, the end messes everything up again. Because Joseph dies and suddenly Jules (who joined the boat to mainland because of Arsinoe) decides to join the warriors instead. After crying over Joseph for like two sentences. Ok, Jules-I-don’t-leave-Arsinoe Milone, okay. How come you change your mind like that?
So yeah, by now you have probably guessed that I did not like One Dark Throne much. Don’t get me wrong, there were good parts like Mirabella and Arsinoe’s character developments and their growing love for each other. Plus the last part of the book was really nice and fast paced. But everytime I thought it would get better, it just went downhill again. And that’s it. I’m angry.