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?
A few of my thoughts as I was reading Grave Mercy:
So.. Even though it doesn’t look like it, I finished this in one sitting 🙂 I started at about 9pm … and finished sometime in the early morning ! I love it when I can find a book that I just can’t tear myself away from.
I remember hearing about Grave Mercy first on twitter, seeing things like ” Assassin nuns! ” And to be honest, that didn’t seem like something I would be interested in. Sounded a bit too odd for me.
Then I saw the cover and read the description and I knew it was my kinda book. I love historical stories.. I mean seriously. Love them. Could it be partly because I let my girly side come out a bit as I gush over the amazing sounding dresses? .. Just a tad. But I also love the scenery and the action that comes with historical settings. I mean who uses A crossbow these days!?
As I dove into Grave Mercy I prepared myself for the possibility that I might find it daunting, that halfway through I would be bored. It is around 500 pgs after all. But no. Halfway through I was upset! Upset that I knew the story would be ending far too soon.
Ismae was a amazing character. Her background builds her character and she grows into a strong woman… and assassin. Yet she can never truly loose her emotions. I loved watching her struggle with how she felt. trying to decide between staying true to the convent’s wishes, and what she was slowly coming to believe was right. Vengeance? Or Mercy.
The story flowed perfectly, at no point did I feel things were moving to slow or too fast. And the writing style was just… perfect. The language stayed true to the time period, and at times the descriptions were so rich it almost felt poetic. The action and intrigue seriously kept me on my toes!
Of course there is a romance. At first I was against the idea, I wanted Ismae to show a strong woman doesn’t need a man! And we don’t! But then again.. Who really would turn away from a gorgeous man who can handle a sword and is full of wit? Not I ! The pairing was perfect. I found myself mentally nudging Ismae toward Duval often.
Something to keep in mind for a few readers, there is a few sexual references in Grave Mercy. Not too many, and it doesn’t get into detail really. But Ismae is trained in .. many different arts. And sometimes “womanly wiles” are the best way to get information. I personally found this refreshing. But I understand that not everyone feels this way. However when you think about the fact that this is a historical, the presence of sex is really.. well, historically accurate in a way. Girls were considered women much earlier in their lives, and were also married off very young… Anyway. Like I said. It’s not too much. But I figure I should just mention it for some of the younger readers interested.
So basically my review is this : ***GUSH***
I cannot say it enough. I LOVED THIS BOOK.
If you haven’t read it yet, and the description or my review intrigues you? Go pick it up! You won’t be disappointed!!
Book #2 is out April 2nd 2013!