Three Dark Crowns is a popular fantasy series written by Keandare Blake.
The story centers itself around the three main characters: Katherine, Mirabella, and Arisonoe who are each competing against each other to become the next Queen of Fenn Born after their mother steps down.
As you might have guessed, this epic series is a young adult (YA) fantasy story, so if you’re a fan of the young adult fantasy genre then you’re making the right choice to give this series a read.
There’s also a variety of complex themes explored in this series, including familial relationships and, of course, romance. But, for those just getting started with the series, what will be the best order to read each book in?
If you’re currently asking yourself this question, I’m here to help. Below, you will find some more information about this series, as well as two different ways that you can read this thrilling series in order. Let’s begin! Just read on.
About The Three Dark Crowns Series
Before I jump any further into this guide, I first think that it would be helpful to give you a little overview of what this series is about.
This will help you to make a more informed decision as to whether or not you think that you’ll enjoy reading the Three Dark Crowns series.
The very first installment of the Three Dark Crowns was first published in 2016 and the final installment in the series was published in 2019.
The series quickly received critical acclaim and a cult following thanks to its gripping storyline centered around three triplet sisters, as well as its thrilling dark premise that hooks readers from the get-go.
To provide more clarity, the series itself follows the lives of three triplet girls who were born as natural heirs to the throne of Fennbirn.
Three Dark Crowns opens with the news that their mother, the current queen, has fallen to her demise, and as all three girls each share equal claims to the throne – it means that they are going to have to go head to head to discover who is truly worthy of the crown.
To make this series extra interesting, the three potential queens each have their very own special form of magic that differentiates them from each other.
On one hand, we have Mirabella who has the ability to control the elements. Thanks to this, it means that she can weave water with her hands and spark flames from her fingertips!
Then, we have her sister Katherine. Unlike Mirabella, Katherine has the unique ability to be able to consume all types of deadly poison without getting hurt.
Last but certainly not least, the final sister is Arsinoe, who has the special ability to be able to not only control plants with her mind but animals as well. Let’s go ahead and explore the series in more detail in the next section.
Three Dark Crowns Books In Publication Order
If you are new to the Three Dark Crowns series or you would simply like to read this series in the way that it was intended to be read by the author, then reading the book in publication order is the best way for you to do it.
The name of the series, Three Dark Crowns is the first book in this beloved series.
In every generation of the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets will be born and each has a claim to the throne and their own personal magic powers to boot.
Mirabella is a strong elemental who can weave water and spark flames, Katharine can ingest poisons without so much as batting an eyelash, while Arisnoe has the power to control animals and plants.
In order to find the rightful queen of the island, the three triplets will need to go head-to-head to find the one worthy of the crown. But, who will come out on top?
- Female-focused and centered around female agency
- Fast paced and thrilling
- Gripping plot
- Minor plot holes
In One Dark Throne, the race for the crown has begun! Out of the three, which sister will come out on top with the crown?
In this sequel, we see Katharine rise up into her personal power after spending much of the first book as the weak link of the three. Can Arsinoe master her secret talent?
Will Marisnoe be able to overcome the attacks and occupy the throne instead of her sisters? There’s all to play for in this sequel.
- Good plot continuation from the first book
- Easy to read and has great flow
- Thrilling and exciting
- Some find that the competition between the three sisters isn’t fairly distributed, which takes away the thrill of the fight for the crown somewhat
Three Dark Crowns is a series about the three triplets fighting to take their spot on the throne…but what about before all of that?
In The Young Queens, the story centers around Mirabella, Arsinoe, and Katharine before they were scheming to steal the crown from each other, back when they were just three sisters.
In this story, you’ll learn about how these three sisters started out, the relationships they shared, and who they were individually before they were pitted against each other by the throne.
- Deemed the best prequel story out of the three novellas
- Well-paced and excellent storytelling
- Must-read for those that want more background information about the three sisters
- Confusing if you haven’t read Three Dark Crowns
Next, we have The Oracle Queen. This is another one of the novellas in the series and focuses on the Oracle Queen and her treacherous reign.
As you might have been able to guess, this is one of the prequel novellas written by Kedare Blake. When triplet queens are born on the island, they can have one of three gifts: elementals, naturalists, or poisoners.
However, Queen Elisabet has the gift of sight, something that is not allowed.
If you’re already a big fan of the series, then you’re sure to love reading about the Oracle Queen (otherwise known as Queen Elisabet) and her tragic and bloody reign that ultimately led to her demise.
- Fast-paced and thrilling
- Female-focused, the story centers around the reign of the “mad queen”
- Great story continuation
- Some readers find that this installment does not add to the series
Tying in closely to The Young Queens and The Oracle Queen, the Queens of Fennbirn consists of a collection of stories that help to give the reader a clearer idea of the origins of each of the three sisters.
Along with having the chance to gain a better understanding of how the three sisters started out and the relationships they shared with each other before having to go head to head for the throne, Queens of Fennbirn also gives the readers a clearer idea of what actually happened during the reign of the Oracle Queen, too.
In other words, this fifth installment will help to give you insight into the past of Fennbirn.
- Great insight into Fenn Borns past
- Provides readers with the chance to learn more about the origins of the three sisters
- Some have described this book as being a “filler” in the series
In the 6th installment (publication order, that is) Queen Katharine has finally taken the throne and is the queen of the island.
Still, despite the fact that the three sisters still have their own scores that they need to settle with each other, there is much speculation that there is a much more looming threat to the island: another queen on Fennbirn island.
Now that Queen Katharine sits on the throne, will her sisters let her be? Or, will they plot together to usurp the throne? Not only that but there’s also an alarming possibility that there will be an uprising led by the mysterious Blue Queen.
In Two Dark Reigns, allegiance to the throne is tested by tension caused by the mysterious Blue Queen and the looming threat of the two other sisters. What will Queen Katharine do?
- Excellent story continuation from the previous books
- Entertaining and fast-paced
- Focus on female agency
- Some readers have found this book’s plot to be harder to follow than others
Last but certainly not least, we have the final book in the series: Five Dark Fates. After the horrible confrontation that took place with Queen Katharine, the rebellion is currently at a standstill.
The legion curse of Jules has become unbound, and the only person that can find a cure is Arsinoe, despite the fact that she is still trying to stop the poisonous mist.
As for Mirabella? She has all but disappeared seemingly into thin air.
For now, Katharine is still ruling as queen, but when her sister Mirabella suddenly reappears – Katharine begins to slowly let her guard down with Mirabella’s desire for a truce.
However, all is not as it seems, as the dead queens caution Katharine not to trust Mirabella. In this final conclusion to the series, the three sisters rise once again to fight for the crown.
Will allegiances change? Will bonds break? Whatever happens, one thing is for sure, the island of Fennbirn will ultimately lie in the hands of the queen, as always!
- Well paced
- Female focused
- Readers find the epic war to be thrilling and page-turning
- Not everyone is a fan of the ending
Three Dark Crowns Books In Chronological Order
Even though publication order is the most common way to read this series, you might also be interested to learn that you can also consider reading this series in publishing order, too.
If you are interested in reading the series in this alternative order, here is a quick breakdown of the publishing order for you to follow:
- The Oracle Queen
- The Young Queens
- Queen of Fennbirn
- Three Dark Crowns
- One Dark Throne
- Two Dark Reigns
- Five Dark Fates
Now, this particular order is not recommended for those who are going to be reading the series for the first time, as the storyline might be a little more complicated to follow.
That being said, reading in chronological order is a great way for fans of the series to read the prequels that took place before the main timeline in this series. Why?
Well, reading the series in chronological order places the three novellas at the very start of the series.
All in all? If you are someone that enjoys reading fantasy (more specifically, young adult fantasy) then I think that you will love making the Three Dark Crowns series your next big read.
Not only is there a variety of themes to be explored within this series, including romance and familial ties, but Three Dark Crowns is a tale that will keep you coming back.
It’s a truly thrilling story that is full to the brim with plenty of emotion that will stay with you long after you put these books down. From magic to romance, there’s a reason that this series is a cult favorite!
Thank you for taking the time to read through this guide, and we hope that you enjoy reading the Three Dark Crowns series! Whichever order you choose, we’re sure that you’ll love it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Three Dark Crowns Book Is Best?
Despite the fact that everyone is sure to have their own opinions about which book from the Three Dark Crowns series is the best, many people love the final book Five Dark Fates because of the epic war that takes place.
Is There A Three Dark Crowns Movie?
There was much talk of this series being turned into a movie back in 2017, which is around the time that Fox acquired the rights to the series.
However, despite Fox’s plans to turn this series into a feature film, no further announcements regarding the movie have been made.