Title: One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
“The battle for the crown has begun, but which of the three sisters will prevail?
With the unforgettable events of the Quickening behind them and the Ascension Year underway, all bets are off. Katharine, once the weak and feeble sister, is stronger than ever before. Arsinoe, after discovering the truth about her powers, must figure out how to make her secret talent work in her favour without anyone finding out. And Mirabella, once thought to be the strongest sister of all and the certain Queen Crowned, faces attacks like never before – ones that put those around her in danger that she can’t seem to prevent.
Whilst this is going to be a Spoiler Free review please note that this is the second book therefore it may spoil the first one for you! For my Spoiler Free Review of Three Dark Crowns please click here.
One Dark Throne picks up where the cliffhanger of Three Dark Crowns leaves us; the consequences of Pietyr having thrown Katherine into the River. It is safe to say from the get go I was so consumed by this book. If you have read my review for Three Dark Crowns you will know I loved the first book but it was filled with information, with there being so many main characters you had a lot to learn about each of them. This book was easier to fall into because you knew the fantasy world, you knew the characters and the basis of the plot.
This was a book I breezed through, it was easy to get into and it followed a fast pace. This book introduces betrayals, murders, new characters and serious character development. After the events of Three Dark Crowns we learn that Arsinoe is in-fact a poisoner and in this book we are able to see her dabble with that new knowledge and learn more about it. Whilst we also learn more about Arsinoe’s newly found gift, Jules also has secrets and their is so much development to her character as we find out she is more than just a naturalist.
There is so much happening in this book that will keep you on your toes, especially the DEATHS. I won’t name them because spoilers, but I did not see them coming at all and was shocked at them especially two in particular. For many Young Adult books I find when their is a war or fighting scene a lot of the characters survive which usually i’m not too bothered about because then the authors don’t kill off my faves but One Dark Throne takes no prisoners.
To summarize the book up shortly for you in a few lines I would have to say this is a roller-coaster of emotions and events. There are near deaths, deaths, betrayals and plans to escape all rolled into it’s 448 pages making it action packed. The characters develop more into their own style in this book as well, they are less held back by their families and they make more decisions for themselves.
One Dark Throne allows so many of it’s characters the opportunity to really grow into their own and have real character development. Mirabella, Arsinoe, Jules and most notably Katherine. Katherine for me goes through such a contrasting character development, in book one she is rather timid and Pietyr attempts to teach her how to flirt and make herself desirable. In this book she transforms herself into a weapon of sorts, she is dangerous, angry and evil. Which does make it a nice contrast to Mirabella and Arisonoe’s characters and their relationship, we get to see a dynamic of two sisters hating their situation and growing feelings for one another whereas Katherine still see’s it as her duty and now a game to be won.
Katherine’s character development also brings with it numerous questions regarding what is motivating to be this change and it all links to Pietry throwing her into the River. What happened to her? How did she get out? All of which are answered towards the end of the book so we are kept guessing and searching for answers.
I luckily really like all of the main characters in this series, I usually tend to find one I find annoying but for me they are all so interesting. There is also so many different plots underway for the crown or betrayal plots that you are on a roller-coaster of emotions for each character. My favourite character though has to be Arsinoe, she is an underdog of sorts because she has been told she is weak so much that she expects to die but she is so fierce and strong. From her facial scars to her familiar, she’s definitely the one I root for that little bit more.
We also get to meet two new characters in this book, one being Caragh. You’re probably thinking MORE?! It is a character heavy book I will give you that. But Caragh is Madrigal’s sister and therefore Jules Aunt who was previously with Matthew. It is Caragh who I wish we got to see more off, I would have liked to have seen/heard about her being reunited with Matthew and how that plays out but perhaps that is for the Third book.
One Dark Throne is without a doubt a five crown (couldn’t resist) rating for me. I was hooked from the minute I starting reading, I immediately wanted the next in the series to pick up and I was left shocked at so many different points. All of which scream five star to me, I thoroughly enjoyed my reading experience and think this was a phenomenal sequel.
Have you started this series yet? Let me know your thoughts and who is your favourite character below!