Books · Fantasy · Young Adult

Book Review: To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

I’ve been home sick the past two days battling a kidney infection. Unfortunately, this is not my first rodeo. I get kidney infections frequently. It’s getting to the point that I’m keeping a list of my favorite kidney infections. I figure it’ll make a fun Top Ten Tuesday post at some point.

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One good thing about being sick is that I’ve had plenty of time to read and was finally able to write a review for To Kill a Kingdom. I also got plenty of snuggle time in with my two favorite furry sidekicks. 🙂 (Beaker has been sharing his toys with me in attempt to cheer me up. He’s so thoughtful like that.)

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My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Princess Lira is one of the most lethal sirens in the sea. With seventeen hearts and the nickname “Prince’s Bane” under her belt, she’s more than ready to take her mother’s place as the Sea Queen. That is, until her cruel mother decides to punish her for her wrongdoings. She takes Lira’s song from her and abandons her on land, with human legs instead of fins. 

Lira ends up on board the ship of Prince Elian, the notorious siren killer. Now, she must decide if she’s working with or against Elian to destroy the Sea Queen and reclaim the title that was promised to her. 

As a huge fan of both The Little Mermaid tale and Disney movie, I’m often excited when a retelling of it pops up. Most of the time, however, I am unimpressed. I’m not sure what it is that makes The Little Mermaid so difficult to remake. Whatever it is, Alexandra Christo figured it out and kicked it’s ass.

This version had all the elements of the classic story, with more complicated twists. The backstories for Lira and Elian were interesting, but not overly drawn out. I would have liked to read a little more about Lira and her life as a siren, simply because the world she lived in was so fascinating. The Sea Queen was more wickedly delightful than I anticipated. (She makes the Disney version look like a kitten.) The rest of the sirens and the mer-folk made for awesome support characters, even if we didn’t learn about many of them specifically.

Elian made a good love interest, but, to be honest, I wanted a little more from his character. There was nothing inherently wrong with him, but it just felt like he could have used a tad more personality. His crew and the other human characters rounded out the story well, but, again, none of them were favorites of mine.

I loved the plot of this story, especially the ending. The author did a terrific job of creating a very unique version of the original story without sacrificing it’s integrity. The only “complaint” I really have is with some of the dialogue. Both Lira and Elian have sassy, stubborn personalities, which comes through in their dialogue. There is a lot of jesting and lighthearted insults passed between the two. Overly so. At times I wish they would have toned it down and just had normal conversation. It wasn’t enough to ruin the book for me, but it did get on my nerves a few times.

Overall, this one gets 4 stars from me. Definitely read it if you’re a fan or re-tellings, The Little Mermaid, or just want to read a twisted fantasy with a unique setting.

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12 thoughts on “Book Review: To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

  1. Here, here! Agree with everything you said. Going into TKaK, I actually wasn’t expecting much. Felt like I just had to get through it. And then BAM! Thus far, I’d say it’s my favourite book of 2018.

    Liked by 2 people

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