[September 28, 2020 – October 13, 2020]
Thanks again to Inkyard Press and NetGalley for the e-ARC to read and review! Kingdom of Sea and Stone is on sale NOW!
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Series: Crown of Coral and Pearl #1
Recommend to Others?: Yes
ABOUT: Ever since Nor was forced to go to a nearby kingdom in her sister’s place, she’s wanted nothing more than to return to the place and people she loves. But when her wish comes true, she soon finds herself cast out from both worlds, with a war on the horizon.
As an old enemy resurfaces more powerful than ever, Nor will have to keep the kingdom from falling apart with the help of Prince Talin and Nor’s twin sister, Zadie. There are forces within the world more mysterious than any of them ever guessed—and they’ll need to stay alive long enough to conquer them…
My Review: Kingdom of Sea and Stone is a wonderful duology and well-written retelling of “The Little Mermaid” and “Mulan.” If you loved either of those stories, then you are going to love this one as well. Book 2 was an enjoyable read but could have used more action considering war is on the horizon.
Nor never ceases to amaze me. Her character development made this novel shine. She wants something more in life though doesn’t know what because she still feels beholden to the community that shunned her. Nor is a fighter despite the uncertainty for herself, her people, and her relationship with Talin plague that her every move. I was surprised by how her particular story ended but I think it ended in the best of ways. She truly is a “wandering crab.”
The idea of blood coral and blood bonds and their uses were interesting. It brought a lot of tension and a sense of impending doom to spice up the story. Yet considering how cruel Ceren can be and how much of a threat he’d be to many as king, I expected more….something in response. The mood would stagnate here and there, leaving the reader hanging. Ceren is such an excellent antagonist with a great backstory. A worthy evil to fight against the good (Nor and friends).
I liked all the new characters that were introduced. Roan is snarky, confident, and laid back. I’m still unsure if his character was meant to be another love interest or just there to disrupt/challenge Nor and Talin’s relationship. Adriel I liked because she gave Nor a particular support (an outsider looking in) only she could provide. I also loved the Galethian horses. They’re highly trained horses and companions.
The ending of Kingdom of Sea and Stone was good. For the most part, things tied up nicely but I wanted to see some kind of justice/reconciliation of some sort from the Varenians for the poor treatment of Nor, her family, and Sami.
I’m sad this story is over. I would have loved to see where life takes Nor. But for now it’s a bittersweet goodbye to a wonderful heroine and series.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mara Rutherford began her writing career as a journalist but quickly discovered she far preferred fantasy to reality. Originally from California, Mara has since lived all over the world with her marine-turned-diplomat husband. A triplet born on Leap Day, Mara holds a master’s degree in cultural studies from the University of London. When she’s not writing or chasing after her two sons, she can usually be found pushing the boundaries of her comfort zone, whether at a traditional Russian banya or an Incan archaeological site. Mara is a former Pitch Wars mentee and three-time mentor.
READ MY REVIEW OF
CROWN OF CORAL AND PEARL
READ AN EXCERPT OF
KINGDOM OF SEA AND STONE HERE
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