ARC Review: Crown of Coral and Pearl by Mara Rutherford

Title: Crown of Coral and Pearl
Author: Mara Rutherford 
Genre: Fantasy 
Source: Inkyard Press via NetGalley
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Publication Date: August 27th 2019

Summary: 
For generations, the princes of Ilara have married the most beautiful maidens from the ocean village of Varenia. But though every girl longs to be chosen as the next princess, the cost of becoming royalty is higher than any of them could ever imagine… Nor once dreamed of seeing the wondrous wealth and beauty of Ilara, the kingdom that’s ruled her village for as long as anyone can remember. But when a childhood accident left her with a permanent scar, it became clear that her identical twin sister, Zadie, would likely be chosen to marry the Crown Prince—while Nor remained behind, unable to ever set foot on land. Then Zadie is gravely injured, and Nor is sent to Ilara in her place. To Nor’s dismay, her future husband, Prince Ceren, is as forbidding and cold as his home—a castle carved into a mountain and devoid of sunlight. And as she grows closer to Ceren’s brother, the charming Prince Talin, Nor uncovers startling truths about a failing royal bloodline, a murdered queen… and a plot to destroy the home she was once so eager to leave. In order to save her people, Nor must learn to negotiate the treacherous protocols of a court where lies reign and obsession rules. But discovering her own formidable strength may be the one move that costs her everything: the crown, Varenia and Zadie.
*Thank you so much Inkyard Press and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review Crown of Coral and Pearl!*


I've been working with Mara on an interview for the blog for the past few weeks, so I was super excited when I was approved on NetGalley for Crown of Coral and Pearl. I blew through this book in two sittings, it was a quick read with an intriguing story line that captured me from page one.

I really loved the bond between Nor and Zadie. Being twins and being groomed to become the next princess of Varenia. Especially how after Nor's accident and how the attention that was split among the both of them was now mostly focused on Zadie. Something that was devastating and that had lasting consequences for Nor made the bond between the twins even stronger. The story shows how far you will go for the people you love and the sacrifices are willing to make for their happiness. I know for me I would go to the ends of the earth for my sister and though we are not twins everything that Nor did for Zadie in this novel, I would do for my sister. Hands down. No questions asked. 

I really enjoyed the two different settings the story takes place in. The first half Crown of Coral and Bone take place in the sun on the ocean and Nor feels free. She has the water, her sister and Sami and that is all she ever needed. The people of Varenia get a long, they have a fair governor and though it isn't easy to find pearls, they manage. The second half takes place on land in the darkness of the mountain castle that has little sunlight and keeps Nor caged and in the dark unlike her previous life. 

The only issue I had with Crown of Coral and Bone is that I felt that the romance was a bit rushed. I get that Nor's situation was dire. But there was very little development in it before she was "in love" with this character. Don't get me wrong, the romance still managed to make me swoon and I loved it. I just wish it wasn't as rushed and there was more development. 

Overall I really enjoyed Crown of Coral and Pearl and I am crossing my fingers for a sequel. I would love to see where these character's are going to go next and the fall out of the events of the end of the novel. If this does happen to be a stand alone, I've created a happily ever after for all of them. But fingers crossed!!! 

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