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Mini-reviews: To Kill a Kingdom + Children of Blood and Bone

pub 3/6/18 by Feiwel & Friends
Young Adult - Fantasy/Retelling
Received ARC from pub
To Kill a Kingdom is the Little Mermaid re-telling I didn’t know I needed in my life. It takes what we know of the Disney movie and completely turns it on its head while at the same time keeping recognizable elements that any fan would recognize. It’s dark and twisty and I was so, so here for it. Lira is a siren princess whose collection of seventeen princes’ hearts has earned her the nickname “Prince’s Bane”. (Told you it was dark.) But an accidental yet treasonous act causes her mother, the Sea Queen, to punish her by turning her human, robbing her of her ability to sing (she can still speak) and she has until the winter solstice to bring back Prince Elian’s heart or stay human forever. So when Lira ends up in his crosshairs, she knows what she’s supposed to do. But Prince Elian is nothing like she (or I) imagined. (He’s better.) He’s a man who loves the sea, has no desire to become a king and hunts sirens with his loyal crew. Then Lira appears out of nowhere with claims that she help him with his mission and he has no idea what to think. In fact, these two take the whole hate-to-love relationship to a whole other level. They’re distrustful and snarky at every turn. I totally loved it. But at the core of it, what I loved most — mythology, world-building, characters and plot aside — was this idea of choosing a different path from the one you were raised to take. Is that possible? Can you have a second chance? Both Lira and Elian struggle with it in a similar and different ways. It’s an incredible story from start to finish and one hell of a debut from Alexandra Christo.

Do I recommend? Yes! I was thinking about the book for days after finishing it and consider it to be my favorite book of 2018 so far. I can’t wait to see what the author does next.


Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orïsha #1) by Tomi Adeyemi
pub 3/6/18 by Henry Holt Books
Young Adult - Fantasy
Gifted ARC from Alexa
Children of Blood and Bone was one of those books I was both excited and apprehensive to read because there was SO MUCH HYPE (plus have you seen how many pages that book is?!). I waited until I had a low-key weekend to dive in and not only did it live up to the hype but I was so captivated by the story that I sped right through it. In the world of Orïsha , magic has disappeared and on that same night, a ruthless king tried to kill all the maji (those with magic) he could find. Including Zelie’s mother who was a Reaper that could summon forth souls. Those who managed to survive were left powerless and a target for people’s hate. Zelie, along with her father and brother, struggle every day to make ends meet. Then a chance meeting between Zelie and said king’s genuinely kind-hearted daughter set offs a chain of events as they try to bring back magic to the world. They only have one shot and Zelie, her brother and the princess are determined to do it. Except, standing in their way is the crown prince, a young man blinded by his father’s lies. It’s a race against all odds and interweaved with so much deception, heartbreak, and anger. The author did an incredible job of building up these complex characters with scars from their past while constantly keeping the pace of the plot moving forward. I was so impressed by every twist and turn and by the magic in this book. It ends on a note that definitely leaves you wanting more.

Do I recommend? Funny side note, I read this book the same weekend I watched Black Panther and I had read somewhere that if you loved that movie and wanted more, this was the book to read. I totally agree!

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