Why did I want to read this book?
I’ve read several reviews from book bloggers who loved this series and I was intrigued by the book blurb. A female assassin in a historical setting? Count me in.
What worked for me?
I love the setting of the story where you have warring kingdoms, political intrigue, Death’s daughters, divination, and assassins and still everything makes sense and everything works its magic to create that amazing whole. Ismae escaped an arranged marriage to a brutal man and found herself being trained in all kinds of arts to become an assassin in, get this, a convent. She discovers her special ability through those who revere one of the oldest of old, St. Mortain, the god of Death himself. Her latest mission has brought her into the high courts of Brittany and into a world of intrigue, political maneuverings, and deadly chess games.
The world that author Robin LaFevers had built has created these really interesting characters that you really want to learn more about. You know how one person can hardly be known only by one angle? You have to find and learn all his or her angles in order to truly know him or her. And all of them are characters that I really felt were worth knowing more about. The political intrigue was also really well-done. I love following the clues, trying to solve the mysteries along with the characters, watching some characters fall apart (is that cruel of me?), and watching some characters fall into each other. There’s fantastic chemistry going around and not just of the romantic type. And I love that we have all these different aspects within this story.
What did not work for me?
I didn’t have any particular thing that I didn’t like about this book.
My over-all take on it?
When I finished this book, I immediately wondered how I could have gone a long time with this book on my bookshelf without reading it. It’s a great book in itself as well as a great series starter. Ismae was an intriguing character and the development of her relationship with Duval was a treat for me as a romance reader. There was subtlety there that really works well with the whole story. I can’t wait to read the next two books in the series. They’re on their way to me from the Book Depository, so give me, give me, give me.
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Yes, these are my honest and personal thoughts on this book.
Though she has never trained as an assassin or joined a convent, she did attend Catholic school for three years, which instilled in her a deep fascination with sacred rituals and the concept of the Divine. She has been on a search for answers to life’s mysteries ever since.
While many of those answers still elude her, she was lucky enough to find her one true love, and is living happily ever after with him in the foothills of southern California.
In addition to writing about teen assassin nuns in medieval Brittany, she writes books for middle grade readers, including the Theodosia books and the Nathaniel Fludd, Beastologist series.
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Have you read any of Robin LaFevers’s books?