Author: Robin LaFevers
Series: His Fair Assassin #1 (companion series)
Expected publication: April 3rd 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Genre: Historical, YA romance, fantasy
Source: Review copy from Netgalley, thanks!
Rating: ♥♥♥♥ and a 1/2
Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?Racquel's thoughts:
Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.
Ismae's most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?
Confession time, contemporary might be my favorite genre to read and I value you it dearly but I happen to be very, very, very fascinated by historical novels. I went though a phase a few years back where I went crazy and bought about 6 historical YA books to read and while their stories weren't particular the best, I simply loved them for the world and time they are set in. But now I can say that I have read a wonderful historical YA novel and loved it not only for the time period but also for the fantastic story!
Grave Mercy definitely earns it's spot in my favorite books shelf. I read it in one sitting, intrigued from the first graphic chapter. Like always, I was fascinated with the world and time period of Grave Mercy, assassins trained by nuns? who wouldn't be interested?! Ismae is a heroine I fell in love with immediately, she is a strong girl despite going though many ugly things and her backbone grows further when she is admitted to the covenant of the St. of Death.
What made Grave Mercy a favorite read to me is the romance. Which happens to be much more than that. Ismae never trusted or liked men and after she moves to the covenant where she is surrounded by females she completely lost hope in the male species so when the love interest (who I will not mention the name of so I you can read and figure of for yourself!) comes along, big yet tender, he is a novelty Ismae never dreamed of being real. Let me tell you, I read every line, every scene between Ismae and her love interest twice. I cannot begin to tell you the heat I was feeling during their exchanges! My heart was skipping so much beats, I was afraid of a heart failure throughout this book. Ismae might be trained in so many ways and skilled at death but due to her dislike of men, she posses an innocence in love that makes the romance a million times sweeter.
Now don't think this book is solely romance- and don't forget it's a great one at that- but there is more depth to it than that. Through this romance, Ismae learns who trust, to question what she thought and was taught is unquestionable and it helped her to grow and develop as a person, her own person and not a weapon.
I was warned by a few people that this book slows down towards the middle but I experienced no such thing. I was called for dinner, did I go? Nope. I had to take a shower before it got really late but oh, what is the problem with taking another past-midnight shower when I can keep devouring the book? The suspense of who the villain pushed me to read non-stop and I couldn't wait to get more of Ismae and her love interest who has come to be one of my all time favorite fictional hero's! His interaction with Ismea is so heartwarming, so real and funny at the same time, it's hard not to fall in love with him!
The only thing holding me back from a full 5 heart no matter how crazy I am about this book is how since there are a lot of things to cover in the second half of the book, the pacing moved on too fast and I missed Ismea and the hero's alone time but besides that, this book is spectacular in my eyes and I already cannot wait to read it again! With witty banter that put a goofy smile on my face, a hero worth killing for, a heroine that is just as strong as the loveable hero, a set of rounded characters and a plot that kept me on my toes, it is extremely, extremely, extremely hard not to adore Grave Mercy.
Rating: 4.5 hearts~ a real treat to romance lovers, fans of kick ass heroines and heroes and historical novels!
(taken from advance reader's copy, subjected to change)
I bear deep red stain that runs from my left shoulder down to my right hip, a trail left by the herbwitch's poison that my mother used to try to expel me from her womb.
"I am too tired to spar tonight, my lord."Teaser:
"What, pray tell, am I to do with her?"