Jul 1, 2018

To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo Review (S.S.S. June Book)

 To Kill a Kingdom

Hi guys! I'm sorry this is a little late, but it felt like it took me forever to finish because all of a sudden my life got kinda busy and I sorta forgot I had books to read? 😂 Oops. 
Oh well, here is my review of To Kill A Kingdom! (It's amazing guys! Definitely my favorite retelling so far this year! 😄) 
My Rating: 

The plot had great pacing and I never felt bored! I especially loved all of the piratey scenes with Elian and I loved how it definitely reminded me of the Disney version of the Little Mermaid, yet it had such a great and perfectly twisted story of its own. I don't think you would know immediately that it was a retelling of The Little Mermaid if you read it without knowing it already. 

 I also loved the subtle references to the movie that I noticed, like Lira's red hair, how The Sea Queen was modeled after a creepy hybrid of King Triton and Ursula, some scenes from the movie rewritten in a completely different way, and also I noticed Eric and Elian's name both start with an E, and Lira's name is basically Ariel spelled backwards with the E left out, though that may not have been deliberate and I'm just grasping at straws here, but I thought it was funny. 😂 

Even the writing itself was so well done. Here are a couple of lines that I just loved the sound of! 

The world building was AMAZING! Especially for only a 300 paged standalone! I would LOVE to read more stories set in this world! It's so diverse and interesting and fun to read about. Each country had their own customs and cultures and Christo did such a great job cramming all of it into one book without making it feel rushed. She could totally turn this into a series! Like, what if she wrote more fairytale retellings set in this world? I would SO read them! 😄

I really disliked Lira at the beginning, and I found myself thinking, "If Elian ends up killing her in the end, I would be totally okay with that." 

Me at Lira in the beginning:

unsure GIF

 BUT, as the story progressed I was glad to see how her character changed and developed and how she learned to embrace her humanity, and by the end I found myself totally shipping and rooting for her and Elian. I felt things guys! That almost never happens! 😂 

 Me at Lira and Elian in the end:

this is so cute GIF

Also there is just some great dialogue between them like this:

As for Elian, I definitely liked reading his chapters more than Lira's in the beginning. His pirateness was so fun to read about and made me want to watch Pirates of the Caribbean. (again.) 😂 I actually listened to that soundtrack while reading this and it went PERFECTLY with it OMG! (If you ever read this book I highly highly recommend listening to the mermaid music (the score, not the one with lyrics) from On Stranger Tides during the final battle scene, it's awesome!!! Just sayin'. 😉) 

 Also I loved Elian's crew! The banter between Madrid and Kye was so cute and funny, and I loved their loyalty to Elian and how they all added something to the book! 

The only negatives I have is that it took me a little bit to warm up to Lira; I'm definitely a heroes over villains kind of person, and it was a little bit darker and gorier than I'm used to, but that was everything to do with my tastes and not the book itself. So really my rating is more like 4.5 than 4, but I didn't feel like I loved it quite enough because of these small issues, so that's why I didn't give it a 5. But, it was still an amazing book, and I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. I would definitely consider it one of my new favorites! 😂

As I was writing this review I realized that I would like to reread it someday, and I don't think 
I feel that way about many books, so if this one is making me feel that, than I guess it was pretty good. 😄 Also, I think it would make a great movie if it was done right of course. There were so many great action scenes, and it definitely satisfied my craving for pirate books with lots of fun and action that I didn't completely felt like I got while reading Daughter of the Pirate King last year. The writing was amazing, the world building was amazing, even the romance was great, which I normally don't pay much attention to! If you love retellings, pirates, mermaids (ahem, I mean sirens,) action, great character development, and great non-annoying slow burn romance, than this book is for you! 😊

What did you think? Have you read this book? Who was your favorite character? What was your favorite kingdom? Got any great YA book recommendations with pirates? I need MOOOREE! 😂


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