TWO DARK REIGNS by Kendare Blake

May 13, 2019

Three Dark Crowns #3
Release Date: September 4, 2018
Genre: YA Fantasy
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Length: 464 pages
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: HarperTeen

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About the Book
Queen Katharine has waited her entire life to wear the crown. But now that she finally has it, the murmurs of dissent grow louder by the day. There’s also the alarming issue of whether or not her sisters are actually dead—or if they’re waiting in the wings to usurp the throne.

Mirabella and Arsinoe are alive, but in hiding on the mainland and dealing with a nightmare of their own: being visited repeatedly by a specter they think might be the fabled Blue Queen. Though she says nothing, her rotting, bony finger pointing out to sea is clear enough: return to Fennbirn.

Jules, too, is in a strange place—in disguise. And her only confidants, a war-gifted girl named Emilia and her oracle friend Mathilde, are urging her to take on a role she can’t imagine filling: a legion-cursed queen who will lead a rebel army to Katharine’s doorstep.

This is an uprising that the mysterious Blue Queen may have more to do with than anyone could have guessed—or expected.

My Review


Here I am, at the end of this book, and I have even more questions than I started with. This author does an incredible job of giving answers and creating situations that warrant more. Characters I couldn't care less about have now become people I'm rooting for. How the heck does that happen??? And why do I always cheer on the 'bad guys'??? And will there be a way to defeat the Mist without sacrificing my beloved??? The first half of the story was slow and boring, but it definitely picked up and had me questioning EVERYTHING!!

Mirabella, the elemental 💎

She's always loved her sisters and had the hardest time coming to grips with the fact that she'd have to kill them in order to claim the throne. With her ship officially over (RIP Joseph), she's focused on protecting her sister, Arsinoe, while they try to make a life on the mainland. I've been Team Mira since book one and this book only made me more of a fan. I know most people love Arsinoe or Katharine more, but I've always liked the fact that Mira was always an elemental. She was always powerful and warm and kind and nothing's changed. She's awesome! I want to watch her call the lightning and storms and dance with the flames. I was a little irritated with her for not speaking up when it was absolutely necessary, like calling out Jules for EVER thinking she could be a queen. But I'm looking forward to how (if) she'll be able to fight for the cause, for peace, within the poisoner faction.

Arsinoe, the true poisoner 🐍

This chick drove me nuts. I've been an Arsinoe supporter from the beginnning. Who wouldn't love the princess who couldn't care less about the crown? Who couldn't care less about decorum or propreity? Who would rather wear trousers and fish and run with bears than wear dresses and drink tea? Of course I loved her. But her idea of loyalty led her down a dumb road and I wanted to knock some sense into her. How dare she back Jules as a queen? She's no freaking queen. And then to bully Billy and Mira into it was foul. However, with the dreams and the premonition forcing her to choose her fate, I loved how steadfast she was in her love and loyalty for her sister. Find another way, babe!

Katharine, the mad one 👻

Possessed by the dead queens who didn't get the crown, she now wears it. But her kingdom is suffering. Not only did Katharine NOT earn her crown, but in her pursuit of it, she's caused unrest. The mist has come to the island, leaving dismembered bodies at her steps. And with a rebellion on the rise, her hold on the crown isn't guaranteed. With Natalia gone, it's almost like Katharine has lost some direction. She tries to befriend Mira's besties, looks to Luca for guidance, and doesn't stop to just think! I get that the spirits are basically driving the train, but c'mon. I'm loving the whole 'possessed' feature of Katharine's plot, however, I'm wondering if she'd be alive if the queens left. Is she just a husk, broken apart, and only held together by spirits? Poor Pietyr, having to deal with only a piece of the girl he loves. And that ending... 😲🤯😲

Jules Milone

See, I used to like this chick. Seriously. She defended Arsinoe at every turn and I was impressed with her naturalist skills. But you see, now she thinks she deserves to wear a crown. Being legion cursed, she may be the most powerful person on the island. But she's no queen. How do you grow up with a queen, love a queen, understand the tradition, and still covet the crown? I get not wanting the poisoners to rule, but there are other ways. I was encouraging her when she kept being skeptical of Emilia's plan. However, while I continued to be skeptical, she jumped on the crazy train. I'm not down with that so I'm against the rebellion. It's funny because I've been dreaming of a revolt since book one, but not with Jules in the lead. I always envisioned it with Mira and Arsinoe leading the charge and with Katharine eventually seeing the light and joining in. Jules frustrates me and I don't even want anyone to find a cure for her madness. And am I nuts for thinking that something is building between her and Emilia? I wonder if they're being shipped by people? Does this idea have stans?

Then there's Billy... I've loved him for quite some time, but there was a point in this story where he had me so aggravated. I thought his love for Arsinoe would get him through anything, but life on the mainland made him soft. I'm just so grateful he found his way back to Fennbirn with the sisters. I think he left his balls there and I'm hoping he can now find them. I also hope he doesn't die. He's the last romantic interest left and I've shipped him and Arsinoe from the start. Don't kill the last ship left!!

The character that surprised me the most was Madrigal. When she was locked away in the dungeon, I enjoyed her spunk and her defiance. I also congratulated her on finally finding some love and loyalty for her daughter and coming to terms with her sister, Caragh (who I hope has a larger role in book four). Better late than never, right? I could do without Emilia and Mathilde. I want more of Pietyr (RIP?) and the sisters, and I'm hoping the last book of the series, Five Dark Fates, gives me all the answers I'm looking for.

This was a buddy-read with Jessica & Misha!

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About the Author
So, I write books. The Anna Dressed in Blood duo is horror, The Goddess War trilogy is mythology, and Sleepwalk Society is contemporary, because the world don't move to the beat of just one drum. What might be right for you, may not be right for some. Love to read, too. Fiction, philosophy, good books, bad books, because you take the good you take the bad you take them both and there you have a stack of books and stuff. I mean, you've got to be adventurous. There's more to life that what you're living, so take a chance and face the wind.

There's more coming soon like Scary Out There and THREE DARK CROWNS so don't waste another minute on your cryin. We're nowhere near the end.

My likes include animals, food, and nostalgia. I mean, whatever happened to predictability? The milkman, the paperboy, the evening TV? Used to be everywhere you look, there's a heart, a hand to hold on to.

Anyway, I love to hear from readers so drop me a line here or at my website and we'll talk about friends to know, and ways to grow, and how if you threw a party you would see that the biggest gift would be from me and the card attached would say, thank you for being a friend.

We can also talk about all the sitcom theme songs in this bio. Sha la la la.

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