by Catherine Doyle, Katherine Webber
Series: Twin Crowns #1
Published by Balzer + Bray
Release Date: May 17, 2022
Genres: Fantasy, Magic, Romance, YA
Format Read: ARC
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A high-stakes fantasy rom-com about twin princesses separated at birth—one raised as the crown princess, and the other taken as an infant and raised to kidnap her sister, steal the crown, and avenge the parents' murders.
Wren Greenrock has always known that one day she would steal her sister’s place in the palace. Trained from birth to return to the place of her parents’ murder and usurp the only survivor, she will do anything to rise to power and protect the community of witches she loves. Or she would, if only a certain palace guard wasn’t quite so distractingly attractive, and if her reckless magic didn’t have a habit of causing trouble…
Princess Rose Valhart knows that with power comes responsibility. Marriage into a brutal kingdom awaits, and she will not let a small matter like waking up in the middle of the desert in the company of an extremely impertinent (and handsome) kidnapper get in the way of her royal duty. But life outside the palace walls is wilder and more beautiful than she ever imagined, and the witches she has long feared might turn out to be the family she never knew she was missing.
Two sisters separated at birth and raised into entirely different worlds are about to get to know each other’s lives a whole lot better. But as coronation day looms closer and they each strive to claim their birthright, the sinister Kingsbreath, Willem Rathborne, becomes increasingly determined that neither will succeed. Who will ultimately rise to power and wear the crown?
I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This was easily one of the best books I’ve read so far this year.
I read a good bit of YA fantasy, and it often starts to feel repetitive and regurgitated. When I first read this synopsis, I was intrigued by the twin drama…. but what really grabbed me was the comparison to The Princess Bride, which is my favorite movie since childhood. In the past when I’ve read books saying this, I have been disappointed all but once, basically. But I had to give it a chance, and I am so glad I did!!
Twin Crowns doesn’t take itself too seriously. It was such a delightful departure from the super serious, long winded, drawn out fantasy series of recent years (not that I don’t love plenty of those). I was able to move through this book with such ease, never getting bogged down in info dumps and boredom. I laughed, I swooned, my heart raced from the high stakes moments, and my heart even ached a few times.
Wren and Rose couldn’t be more different. They had clearly defined personalities of their own, and I loved reading from both their perspectives. I love them working together even more though. Shen-Lo and Tor are our love interests, and they are both swoon worthy, but each for different reasons. The world building isn’t overcomplicated, but still creative and exciting. It was just so easy to fall into this world with these characters.
As for The Princess Bride reference…. I could actually see it a few times! Especially on Rose and Shen’s trip through the desert. It really did give off the same light hearted, high stakes, fantasy romance vibe.
It did end on a bit more of an emotional moment (or two) and has me dying for the next book! I am just so pleased with this book, yall. It made me so happy! Give it a chance!