Saturday, July 5, 2014

Book Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Release Date: April 3, 2012

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Pages: 549

Received: Bought

Star Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 

                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 Thoughts:

I'm just going to start this off saying GRAVE MERCY was such an intriguing read. When I read the synopsis, I could not WAIT for a fierce heroine. I've been in need for YA fantasy and this fit the bill. Robin Lafevers knows just the right buttons to push to create this compelling story about love, death, and survival.

The  story begins when Ismae is fourteen has escaped an arranged marriage. She received help and arrived at a convent of St. Mortain. She has learned the sisters serve the god of Death and Ismae has been given dangerous gifts. She then trains, for three years, being an assassin and serving as a handmaiden to Death. Ismae is now given a task to serve the god of Death, which remains in the high court of Brittany. She discovers lethal games at hand and must make difficult choices. But Ismae learns that serving Death and following her heart is a dangerous road to take.

I picked up this book on a whim and I'm so happy I made the right choice. Throughout this story, I left myself thinking I was on page 75, but I opened my eyes to notice I was on page 150. I love those books where you don't pay attention to what page you're on, because the story interests you more than numbers. This was book was one of them. Even though it wasn't five-star worthy, I still enjoyed it and found it quite entertaining. 

If you think it's just young adult fantasy, you're wrong. It's also historical fiction! I hope that added aspect convinced you to pick this up. The story is set in the 18th century and even contains kick butt assassins (who knew?). If you're not yet persuaded, I suggest you reread the synopsis. GRAVE MERCY was unique and gripping. If I could describe this, I would call it Reign + Throne of Glass clash in one book.

The action and adventure was definitely engrossing. It wasn't full on gory, in my opinion. Reading all this action might take a breather and time to contemplate what has just happened. The characters were very fascinating (Sorry for being so vague). I didn't have problems with any of them, but I did have trust issues. 

I wanted all the pros to lead up to my cons of this book. It wasn't that perfect read, but it was nearly close. If you're looking for humor, I'm sorry to say that has been lacked. I might have smiled or chuckled hear and there, but nothing I can pin point. Sometimes it felt like some scenes were rushed. The romance felt like it was immensely rushed. The only thing I could sum up was that the affection was short and sweet. I feel like I didn't experience it fully, but it was amusing overall.

GRAVE MERCY is everything to expect in a YA fantasy. We see the development of a frightened girl, to a girl who can protect herself. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is interested in YA fantasy and the 18th century. 


1 comment:

  1. Grave Mercy has probably been on my shelf collecting dust for a year now but I can't bring myself to pick it up! I think the biggest thing for me is the size so it's quite comforting to hear that it was entertaining enough to make you forget about the numbers! I'm not hyper aware of what page I'm on but I usually have some sense, and it's been a while since I've read a book that grips me so much I can't turn the pages fast enough!


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