I finished the first 133 pages of this book on the first night of reading it. I stayed up waaaay past my bedtime like a naughty schoolgirl! Grave Mercy, the first in a trilogy, has all the ingredients for a successful modern series. A brave heroine, forbidden romance, mystical intrigue and the dark arts. It’s all a girl needs, right?
We meet our protagonist, Ismae, as she makes her wedding vows to the man she has been sold to by her father. We learn that she bears a rather unfortunate scar on her back, one that was made by a poison, meant to kill her in the womb. Ismae was fathered by Mortain, the god of death, and her mother tried in vain to terminate the pregnancy. I have to admit, when I started reading, I found myself having to turn off my cheesy filter. I mean, I cringe when I read what I just wrote… it sounds totally corny. It’s got to be hard to write about magical worlds and mystic tales of centuries past without coming off a little hokey, but honestly, once you get going with this book, it doesn’t seem cheesy at all.
Ismae is just so likeable. She’s a spitfire all right, and a murderous little man-hating ragamuffin. Not that those are redeeming qualities, but girlfriend has had a rough go so far, and as much as the convent has helped her, I can’t shake the feeling that Ismae is being taken advantage of.
The writing is an easy to read mix of modern English and historical jargon. Quite easy to digest. So far (and I admit, I’ve read quite a bit ahead) there are no dragging bits, boring parts, or sections that I would have edited out. You can’t say that about too many books.
This is another book that I never would have picked up on my own, (there are no recipes or umlauts!) but am quite enjoying. Thanks to The Duck and The Owl ladies for the great pick. I can’t wait to see what happens next! Go and see what Sarah and Kaitlyn think here. Now to read up to page 261… enjoy!