Grave Mercy by Robin Lafevers.
Young, beautiful and deadly.
Trained as an assassin by the god of Death, Ismae is sent to the court of Brittany, where she finds herself under prepared - not only for the 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 dangerous romance full of intrigue, poison and ultimately finding one's way.
A fifteenth century assassin falling in love with the man she was ordered to kill? This immediately sounded like my kind of book! At first I was a little apprehensive to read it because I haven’t read a lot of historical fiction but Grave mercy hooked me on the first page! Now on to the review.
The cover: This cover is so amazing, it gives the book a perfect first image and doesn’t deceive readers. I also love how the title stands out and is simple, unlike some books that just go overboard on their font. So its a thumbs up for the cover!
The characters: There are a lot of characters in this book and I did find myself getting confused with who was who and what side they were on, but this tiny flaw was just surpassed by each distinctive personality LaFevers gave to each character, making the story have a sense of realism and making the reader become attached to characters other than the leading lady (cough Beast cough). The main character, Ismae, was likeable from the first page, she is so loyal to the people she loves and is a strong woman knows what she has to do without letting her feelings get in the way. And of course there is Duval. I love Duval. Duval is awesome.
The setting: Grave mercy takes place in fifteenth century Brittany before France took over. The story takes place mainly in a mansion of sorts which immediately makes me love the setting, with its winding corridors and hidden tunnels, it just adds so much to the story making it that much more enjoyable.
The overall story: Although the blurb suggests that this is a romance, it is much more than this. Its filled with betrayals, deaths, treasons and politics and you find yourself going 'Oh he's a bad guy!' and then later going 'wait, he's actually good!', I am usually able to predict who the bad guy is in books but with Grave mercy I couldn't guess what the outcome would be! I also love the romance in this book because Ismae doesn't fall in love with the love interest at first glance and she doesn't start to trust him straight away like other characters may do in other books, we actually get to see her love grow throughout the book which is refreshing!
This book has such a unique premise and will grip readers from the first page, it will break your heart but then piece it back together again and will make you question which characters are good and which ones are bad and it will ultimately shock you with betrayals! I rate this Grave mercy 5 out of 5 stars because I didn't get bored once whilst reading it and feel in love with the story!