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Month in review

Reviews
Avatar: The Last Airbender: North and South, Part Three by Gene Luen Yang
Books of a Feather by Kate Carlisle
Caleb and Kit by Beth Vrabel
CatStronauts: Robot Rescue by Drew Brockington
Country Matters by Michael Korda The Dashwood Sisters Tell All by Beth Pattillo Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire
Flaming Iguanas: An Illustrated All-Girl Road Novel Thing by Erika Lopez
The Football Girl by Thatcher Heldring
Froodle by Antoinette Portis
Goddess Boot Camp by Tera Lynn Childs
House Held Up by Trees by Ted Kooser and Jon Klassen
Inside Hudson Pickle by Yolanda Ridge
Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling
To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo
The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
Love Lies Bleeding by Susan Wittig Albert
Love, Penelope by Joanne Rocklin
Melena's Jubilee by Zetta Elliott and Aaron Boyd
Mystic River by Dennis Lehane
The Once Upon a Time Map Book by B.G. Hennessy and Peter Joyce
Poisoned Pages by Lorna Barrett
Questions Asked by Jostein Gaarder
The Sea Lady by Margaret Drabble
Sherlock Frankenstein and the Legion of Evil, Vol. 1 by Jeff Lemire
Spy on History: Victor Dowd and the World War II Ghost Army by Enigma Alberti
Sucks to Be Me by Kimberly Pauley
Thornhill by Pam Smy
Tim Ginger by Julian Hanshaw
Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse
Winter Wonders by Kate Hannigan

Miscellaneous
Favorites of the first half of 2018
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (July 02, 2018)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (July 09, 2018)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (July 16, 2018)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (July 23, 2018)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (July 30, 2018)
June 2018 Sources
June 2018 Summary

Road Essays
Are small towns uhoric or utopic?
An update on the road narrative reading
Road Narrative Spectrum
What isn't a road narrative: towards an ontological understanding of the road's importance

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish



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To Kill a Kingdom: 07/28/18

To Kill a Kingdom

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo is a retelling of The Little Mermaid with a blending of Greco-Roman mythology. It's told in alternating points of view between Princess Lira, the daughter of Sea Queen, and one of the most lethal of sirens, and Prince Elian, a seafaring / pirate prince.

The setting isn't quite the Mediterranean but it's certainly inspired by it. There are Japanese influences too, in the form of a tavern owner with an interesting past. The world building is just familiar enough and just magical enough to give the reader plenty of things to imagine and think about without getting lost. It compares favorably with the world building in The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton and the Sea of Ink and Gold series by Traci Chee.

Lira and Elian are both well imagined characters with compelling reasons to do the things that they do. The foundation for this story is more Disney than Hans Christian Anderson but with darker motives and better thought out characters. Gone is the "because he's cute" and the "humans have cool stuff" reasons. Both characters are working for their kingdoms, sometimes together and sometimes at cross purposes.

Three stars

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