To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo is not only a dark, magical and amazing retelling of The Little Mermaid, it’s also one of the best enemies-to-lovers stories ever! I binge-read it in one day, completely hooked! The story was amazing, the world was incredible and the characters so real and faceted.
The story at its core is a fantasy retelling of Little Mermaid. But to be honest, I didn’t even realize that at first since it is so much darker, and with Princess Lira being so much more powerful and vicious than in the original story. I really loved that it was such a dark and sinister version, and that it put Princess Lira and Prince Elian on an equal footing. Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all, known as “The Prince’s Bane”, until she disobeys her mother, the Sea Queen, who punish her by transforming her into the one thing they loathe most-a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian's heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever. Prince Elian on the other hand is a pirate and a siren-hunter, something of an anti-prince who would happily give away his crown for a life on the ocean. When his friend is killed by the Prince’s Bane, Elian sets out on a journey to revenge him and save the world by killing all sirens once and for all.
So, basically it's a story about a siren who murders princes and a prince who murders sirens, who are determined to hunt each other down, no matter what. But ripped of her powers and turned into a human, Lira end up at Elian’s ship, looking for an opportunity to take his heart. Only that spending time with each other makes them go from deadly enemies, to distrusting co-habitants, to reluctant admirers who accidentally save each other’s lives instead of killing each other when opportunity arises, and finally to lovers. The romance was so wonderful and slow, one of the best enemies-to-lovers stories ever!
I loved the dual narration, it really added to the suspense and made it so much fun with the snarky comments from both Elian and Lira.
I also really loved the amazing world building and the whole magical world and the amazing creatures that Alexandra Christo created. There are sirens, pirates, mermaids, mermen, a beautiful, honorable and unselfish prince, and a save-the-world-adventure. What more can you possibly ask for?!
I must admit that lovers-to-enemies is my favorite trope and Alexandra Christo used this trope in the best possible way to create a masterpiece! This is of my absolute favorite books of all time!
Find out more about the book and the author here: Alexandra Christo