Friday, March 16, 2012

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, #1) by R.L. LaFevers

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, #1)
Hardcover, 1st Edition, 564 pages
Expected publication: April 3rd 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Goodreads Blurb:
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 thoughts:
Grave Mercy was a fantastic historical fantasy. Though some find it difficult to read due to the religious aspects in the story, I didn't feel in any way that it was offensive. It was beautifully written and the story was so compelling. Killer nuns?? What??

I was a Catholic school girl, and I couldn't imagine being in a convent where they train you to kill those who they deem “at death's door.” Those at St. Mortain get an education unlike any other. They are the Handmaiden's of Death, trained to kill those who are marked.

Ismae Rienne was a strong protagonist. She has dealt with the terms of her fate and yet, she still saw positive out of the negative. Could you imagine marrying someone because your father paid them to? She was treated with cruelty, thrown in a cellar and left there.

“I have avoided the fate my father had planned for me. Surely it is I who has won, not he.”

Once she is taken to St. Mortain, everything changes. There are 3 tests that Ismae must complete in order to be fully committed to the convent. The Reverend mother places Ismae in Gavriel's household. She says she needs someone at court, so she has Ismae posing as Gavriel's mistress, that way she has access to all the people and information the convent requires. There are 3 countries battling for Brittany and for the hand of the duchess.

Ismae is faced with heavy choices. Does she fulfill the convents requests or does she follow her heart. There is deceit, murder, mystery, and a budding romance all twisted into a beautiful historical fantasy. I loved the chemistry between Ismae and Gavriel. It was a slow developed relationship but wonderful.

What can I say, I totally loved this book! I can't wait to see what the next installment has in store for us. It's one I am already anticipating.

Rating: 5/5 Snowflakes


  1. I loved it. I could not put it down. I can't wait for the next installment either. I love that it's going to be told from a completely different perspective.

  2. Spot on with this write-up, I truly think this website needs much more consideration. I’ll probably be again to read much more, thanks for that info.