Monday, July 9, 2012

Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
Published: April 3, 2012
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Pages: 560
Series: His Fair Assassin #1
My Rating: 3 of 5 stars

Synopsis: Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

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?

My Review: When I bought this book I wasn't really sure what to expect. It was Grave Mercy or The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight two very different books but eventually I decided on Grave Mercy. Why? I have no idea.

The story starts out with Ismae escaping from her marriage to the convent of St. Mortain who is actually her father. She's trained to be an assassin for the God of Death. The nuns at the convent expect blind loyalty to St. Mortain and Ismae shows first. Her first assignment goes perfectly but on her second assignment Gavriel Duval finds her after she successfully kills her target. The convent and the chancellor both suspect that Duval is a traitor and they want Ismae to prove it. Ismae poses as Duval's mistress at court and while there she finds that even the convent can make mistakes.

I found the beginning of the book kind of annoying. I wanted to read this book so I could read about assassin nuns but three years go by in a matter of pages and you don't get to really read what goes on during Ismae's training. She spends most of her time at court and I spent most of my time trying to remember who was who and what their jobs were.

Ismae was a weird character. One moment she was an assassin and the next she would be as scared as a deer. That just doesn't make much sense to me. She knew how to kill grown men but if they so much as touched her she jumped. That doesn't sound like an assassin to me but I could be wrong.

I did love her relationship with Duval. Actually I basically just loved Duval. Duval and Ismae don't really acknowledge that they love each other until near the end of the book but everyone around them seems to already know that they love each other. Typical love but I still liked the story.

One of my favorite quotes from the book was actually at the end and Duval said it:
“Whenever you are ready, or if you never are, my heart is yours, until Death do us part. Whatever that may mean when consorting with one of Death’s handmaidens.”
I nearly cried.

I didn't have many complaints about this book but I didn't love it. I don't normally like the old English way the characters speak but that actually didn't bother me as much as I thought it would.

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