I hope everyone is enjoying the holidays! If anyone is looking for a good book to settle down with over the holidays, I have a recommendation for you!
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Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
This book popped up as a suggestion and after reading the summary, I was more than curious about this book.
The story follows Ismae after she escapes an arranged marriage and arrives at a convent for young women who have been gifted by the God of death. Ismae embraces her new life as Death’s handmaiden, studying to become an assassin and wanting nothing more to do with the world of men. Eager to prove herself, she takes on her first assignment. Unknowingly to her, she has walked into the middle of war being played out, her actions helping to sway the balance. Shoved into the highest court of Brittany on a new assignment, Ismae is forced to re-evaluate who she is and what she believes.
Ismae is an incredibly strong character who has suffered greatly. She is an extremely relatable character who was thoroughly developed throughout the course of the novel. She faces conflict not only from outside sources but from within herself. Ismae, a young girl who was treated horribly by her father and then passed on to a husband who sought only to beat her into submission, found a home with women who were also gifted by the god of Death. Untrusting of the world outside her convent, especially the intention of men, Ismae wants nothing more than to prove herself useful to the women who saved her. When the convent’s intentions become muddled, Ismae must trust herself and her heart to do what is right.
It wouldn’t be YA if there wasn’t a love interest. Ismae begins to fall for someone she is supposed to be spying on; someone she may have to kill. A relationship starting with mutual distrust, it clearly starts to blossom into something more.
Without giving too much away, the author does a great job of not making it clear who the enemy is at any given point in time. The revelation of the antagonist is done extremely well. There are many enemies in the highest court of Brittany. Some snakes are poisonous while others are turning out to be harmless. A new threat emerges behind every corner, some striking closer to Ismae’s heart than she might care.
This books had me flipping through the pages just about as fast as I could read them. The world that LaFevers created is believable and lovable. The characters, good and bad, seep into your imagination and heart.
Whether you are looking for a good book to cuddle up with by the fire or something to enjoy out in this nice weather, this is a great choice. I can’t wait to get the second book in the series!!
Until next time!