Book Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Rating: StarStarStar

Genre: Young Adult > Historical Fiction > Fantasy

(His Fair Assassin #1)

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?


Warning: the action-packed scenes is just average in Grave Mercy. Three, four times? I was prepared to be whipped by a butt-kicking heroine but it just didn’t happen. the romance was okay. But the true purpose of Mortain’s Handmaidens of Death is simply… noble. The complete turnaround of Ismae‘s beliefs was surprising.

The premise is unique, i’d tell you that. The characters are alright; in the end, i loved deLornay the most (not because he is pretty) and following him is Beast.

The play for political intrigue is too long, though. Also, I was expecting a lot of fights (battles, even), but i was disappointed.

The paranormal elements of Grave Mercy was enjoyable. I don’t get to read that kind of thing everyday. If you are to pick this up, don’t think too much. Just go with the flow and i’m sure you’ll like it. 

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Imprint: Houghton Mifflin

Pub Date: 04/03/2012

Thank you NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for granting my galley request.



3 thoughts on “Book Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

  1. I really liked Grave Mercy, I’m a huge historical fiction fan, so that might have helped 😛 I try not to go into a book expecting a lot, so most of the time I’m quite pleased with the book. I really want to know what happened to Beast, he is in the next book, so should be interesting!

    Great review!

    • Thank you, Jenn! I love Historical Fiction as well. I guess my expectation for Grave Mercy was just high, considering the noise it created at Goodreads months ago. I liked it, could’ve been better if the “wolf” from the tagline was unleashed in the book. =)

  2. Pingback: Book Review: Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers | reading is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

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