REVIEW: TO KILL A KINGDOM BY ALEXANDRA CHRISTO (SPOILER FREE)

Princess Lira is siren royalty and revered across the sea until she is cursed into humanity by the ruthless Sea Queen. Now Lira must deliver the heart of the infamous siren killer or remain human forever.

Prince Elian is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world, and captain to a deadly crew of siren hunters. When he rescues a drowning woman from the ocean, she promises to help him destroy sirenkind for good. But he has no way of knowing whether he can trust her…

GODS.

WOW.

THIS BOOK.

CAN’T SENTENCE.

It is a D R E A M.

It’s The Little Mermaid, but Lira isn’t a mermaid, and isn’t passive (I LOVE The Little Mermaid but ARIEL CAN’T SPEAK), but instead, is a BADASS (if slightly evil) SIREN.

Abused by the Sea Queen, Lira vies for her mother’s approval, and, in doing so, rids herself of humanity, and is left a siren shell.

However, she is VERY complex – though she often expresses a lack of humanity to please her mother, she cares for her cousin Kahlia, and, despite her murderous reign, she doesn’t lose the ability to learn, nor does she lose the ability to love. Without wanting to reveal plot, her journey, and the knowledge that she acquires on board the Saad and, alongside Elian, is a wonderful thing to watch unravel. I really do adore her.

And then there is Prince Elian: terrible royal, and terrific pirate. If I start to talk about my love for Elian, this post won’t end, but he is WONDERFUL. A suave pirate, and petrified prince; frightened of royal responsibility, and called to the ocean, and the crew and ship that are his rightful home. His heart is fractured, but warm. But it is his heart that Lira desires.

This book is an ode to humanity. Elian, Kye, Madrid, Torik, and others aboard the Saad, each demonstrate copious amounts of loyalty, compassion and sacrifice. Though often a dark tale, TKAK is bursting with light. In our present world, plagued with hate, this novel, beyond fantasy, is a beautiful reminder of the wonders ever present in people.

The dialogue in this book is absolutely phenomenal. I would often find myself YELLING at a page in admiration because I was so entertained (or moved) by a piece of dialogue. It is sometimes witty, sometimes moving, sometimes promising, and ALWAYS HAS MEANING. In every conversation, I learn something, or I fall in love.On land, and in sea,

Christo’s world is mesmerising. Lira and Elian inhabit realms rich in legend and, on their travels, visit lands boasting more: a realm of love, sugary sweet; a kingdom of thieves; a territory of ice as cold as its callous citizens. And there are pirates (some evil, some wonderful), at home on an ocean, in a boat, with revered or repulsive crews. It’s an exhilarating climate, and, when you close To Kill a Kingdom, you want to return immediately; it bleeds gold, miraculous and warm, and it’s devastating having to leave.

It’s beautiful, and intense, and MAGICAL.

If you like fantasy, it’s a MUST, and if you like The Little Mermaid, but want a little grit in your oyster, it’s a NEED. BUY IT. AND PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE LET ME TALK ABOUT IT WITH YOU.

Thank you for reading!

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3 Comments

  1. August 18, 2018 / 9:00 pm

    I absolutely adored this book! Like you said, it’s about humanity ultimately. I loved the world and the snark and jabs Elian and Lira both took at each other. I’m also always looking for a darker take on mermaids/sirens, and this book definitely did a great job at portraying them a little bit meaner and not so dream-like. Great review!!

    • Emily
      Author
      August 19, 2018 / 4:09 pm

      The banter between Elian and Lira is one of the best parts of the book. I completely agree! Thank you so much!

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