Hi boys and gals! How are you all doing?
I hope good and ready to read my fangirl testament of today 😀 Believe me, it required a lot of restraint on my part not to write a twenty page essay on how awesome this book is. A lot. Instead, I made it “short” (I tried, okay?) and sweet just for you ^^
I want to thank Hot Key Books for kindly providing me with a review copy of To Kill a Kingdom. It has honestly become my favourite book of 2018 ❤
- Title: To Kill a Kingdom
- Author: Alexandra Christo
- Publisher: Hot Key Books
- Publication Date: March 6th, 2018
- Page Count: 358
Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby—it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears…
I am speechless.
I didn’t want to believe the hype and truly, I tried to stay as impartial as humanly possible. But there was no way I could have dived into this book (no pun intended) and not been marvelled. It was enchanting, a work of art, a brilliant reminder of why I adore books.
As I look back and realise it took me almost a month to read it, I really don’t understand how. In a way, it was simply because I was busy and didn’t have the time to open this gorgeous book. But also because I didn’t want to rush through it. I wanted to savour every page, every sentence, every feeling it evoked within me.
The characters were so endearing, so human, so relatable. I smiled throughout. I wanted to be their friend, their confidant. I wanted to meet them all. It’s not that they are good people, far from it. It’s that they do what they have to do to survive. One is able to sympathise with their motives, no matter how horrendous, and hope they succeed. Because both sides are right and wrong at the same time. It’s just a matter of perspective and values.
You really get everything with this book: the elusive anti-heroine, the rebellious self-sacrificing prince, the loyal crew made up of diverse pirates and thieves with stories of their own, the despicable villain, and so much more. I also have a brand new book boyfriend to pine after. Sigh.
Some of these elements might feel cliché, if for nothing else, because they are directly inspired by the Little Mermaid’s timeless tale (a mix between the original by Hans Christian Andersen and the Disney version, which worked so amazingly well). But they never do cross that line. At least not for me. The story is effortlessly fluid, taking full advantage of the powerful and refreshing twist, mixing up myth and novelty with such dexterity one would assume Christo to be a decades-old veteran.
She’s not. This is her first book. I’m mind-blown.
Her writing. HER WRITING. It was so melodic, so vivid, so true. I could picture everything happening in front of my eyes, feel every emotion the characters were describing, visualise everything happening exactly as Christo had intended it – the sounds, the heartbeats, the speed, the tone. Colourful and deadly and absolutely glorious.
This is one of those rare gems that force you to slow down. Take a deep breath. Enjoy the ride but not once take your eyes off the road. It’s mesmerising and ever-changing, like a sunset. It doesn’t matter that you’ve seen one before – it’s always going to make you stop and stare.
As pages kept piling up on top of my bookmark, I geninely started to panic. The story had barely reached its peak, how could it already be ending? How was the author going to manage wrapping it all up in those last few pages? Everything would be rushed and awful and ruin EVERYTHING.
But I needn’t worry. It was perfect. It was magnificent. I really don’t know what else to say about such a lovely ending. Such a lovely everything!
You might notice there is no Bitter section in this review. That’s because there wasn’t one single bad thing I could point out about this book. Not one. Not even the classic “this book should have been longer because it was so awesome.” NO. This book was the exact perfect length. Any more or any less and it would have been spoiled.
It’s true that it might feel very slow at first. But I actually didn’t mind it at all. Like I said, I enjoyed taking my time with it, gently easing myself into the story and learning bits and pieces at a relaxing pace.
The action was great – vicious, unapologetic and ruthless – with just the right amount to keep one interested and not overwhelmed by the lack of development in other departments. Everything was balanced.
And the romance? Man. The romance. It wasn’t cheesy or nauseating. It didn’t interfere with the plot; instead, complimented it incredibly well. It was subtle and made you crave for more. And it certainly got the butterflies into a frenzy.
Dear author: please reconsider making this a trilogy. PLEASE. I’m all for the epic short stories, but I seriously need a full series of this! Thank you ❤
Thank you so much for reading and until next time!