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Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers eARC {4 Stars}

Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers is the final companion novel in the His Fair Assassin trilogy. Mortal Heart is told from Annith’s point of view and focuses on her struggle to be the perfect daughter of Mortain within the Convent for a bit, though quickly incorporates all three of our favorite nun assassins and the ongoing struggle for their duchy to remain independent. Like Dark Triumph, Mortal Heart is chronologically after the previous book but fairly independent as long as you don’t mind a little catchup regarding the war. You therefore don’t have to worry about any major spoilers :).

Note: I received an advanced copy of Mortal Heart from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers eARC {4 Stars}

Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers (His Fair Assassin #3)
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on Nov. 4th, 2014
Genres: Historical Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 464 pages
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Annith has watched her gifted sisters at the convent come and go, carrying out their dark dealings in the name of St. Mortain, patiently awaiting her own turn to serve Death. But her worst fears are realized when she discovers she is being groomed by the abbess as a Seeress, to be forever sequestered in the rock and stone womb of the convent. Feeling sorely betrayed, Annith decides to strike out on her own.

She has spent her whole life training to be an assassin. Just because the convent has changed its mind doesn't mean she has...

4 Stars

Strengths:

  • Since Annith grew up in the Convent of St. Mortain, in Mortal Heart we finally get to get a much closer look at how the daughters of the pagan god of death actually run things. We get to see the young girls and their training, and how new daughters are found. Many of the young girls also have gifts given to them by Mortain and it was awesome to see more of the subtle magic of the god of death :D.
  • Mortal Heart reveals Annith to be much more than she appeared in the previous two books. On the outside we saw this very well-mannered and obedient girl who was also highly skilled though for some reason never sent out on missions. What we find out from Annith’s perspective is a whole lot of darkness and struggle and I love how multi-dimensional that made her character.
  • As you’ll see below, I was skeptical about the romance in Mortal Heart at first, but I promise that by the end I was completely sold on it, you just have to have patience ;-).
  • While Mortal Heart is Annith’s story, we spend time with Ismae and Sybella as well and Mortal Heart did a really good job of both telling Annith’s story and bringing all three girls’ full circle in terms of development. I feel quite satisfied with how they all changed from their various beginnings.

Weaknesses:

  • As I mentioned above, it took me probably about 70% through Mortal Heart to become convinced of Annith and her boy’s romance. If I hadn’t been reassured to stick with it, I might have given up, which isn’t a great way for the beginning to feel.
  • There is mention of all the different saints in Mortal Heart and I honestly had a hard time keeping some of them straight. Some are easy to remember like the Saint of the sea, but others are not so clear and there weren’t enough clues to help me out at times.
  • Without giving anything away, I wasn’t thrilled with how the main plot line ended. After everything, it just felt a bit anticlimactic for some reason even though objectively the events should have felt epic.

Summary:

Mortal Heart is an excellent conclusion to the His Fair Assassin trilogy. It fits nicely between the darkness of Dark Triumph and the court intrigue of Grave Mercy while finally letting us in on a lot more details about Mortain and the other saints. I’m pretty sad to see things coming to an end though, spin-off series of another of the saints’ children? :D

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
– Anya

 

 Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers

© 2014, Anya. All rights reserved.

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Comments

  1. I’m so happy you enjoyed Mortal Heart! I adored it and the entire series. I can’t wait to see what LaFevers’ does next.
    Kristen@My Friends Are Fiction recently posted…Review of This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman & Meagan SpoonerMy Profile

  2. I never finished Grave Mercy, but this one looks better and if the second is darker, I may forget about the rest of the first and start Dark Triumph. The main thing that I didn’t like about Grave Mercy was the main character, so if she doesn’t appear or only appears briefly in the rest of the series, I may like those.
    Hellen recently posted…Review/Reseña – The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Time Traveller – Joanne HarrisMy Profile

    • Yeah, just go ahead and jump into Dark Triumph if Grave Mercy isn’t working for you, Sybella rocks! Ismae is a very secondary character for the other two books

  3. Hmm, I’ll keep that in mind about the romance as I read, but overall it sounds good. I need to finish that LSAT book already so I can sit down and fully submerge myself in this story. Great review!
    Kel @ Booked til Tuesday recently posted…Art It Up! – Charlotte La BouffMy Profile

  4. I still have to read Grave Mercy…why am I always behind? Sigh. I’ve owned a copy for like two years and still haven’t gotten around to it. It’s just so huge!! I’ve only heard good things about the series though, so it’s inevitable that I’ll read it. Glad the trilogy finished strong!
    Danya @ Fine Print recently posted…Review: Otherworld Nights by Kelley ArmstrongMy Profile

    • *hugs* No worries, we’re all behind on some series ;-). You could probably get away with jumping around if you prefer darker fantasy, ha.

  5. Ooh I like the sound of magic from the god of death. Quite a few series seem to have ended anticlimactically lately. I think it’s because there’s this huge build up we all expect something excellent and equally big. Was it that you didn’t like the love interest? I haven’t read this series, but I have the first book on my Kindle. :)
    Molly Mortensen recently posted…Fallen Souls By Linda Foster Mini ReviewMy Profile

    • The magic is so cool! And since each book has a different girl, we get to see different parts of the magic :D Really the problem is that the second book was SO GOOD for me that book three just couldn’t possibly live up to it since Annith isn’t nearly as broken and dark as Sybella. The love interest definitely wasn’t a win for me in this one as much, but I do still recommend them all :D

  6. Wait, is that Kristen Dunst on the cover!? Crazy.
    Nathan (@reviewbarn) recently posted…Tough Travels- NovicesMy Profile

  7. Ashley Christy says:

    I struggled because I loved Dark Triumph SO MUCH. This one just wasn’t as good. It was really good, just not AS good. Also, I totally agree that the end wasn’t what I wanted it to be. And, without being spoilery, I figured out who he was pretty early on and it took me awhile to stop rolling my eyes at the idea. By the end I was sold, but it took awhile.

    • I majorly feel your pain. I tried so hard to evaluate Annith without comparing her to Sybella, but I just can’t always do it D: Hehe, I’m glad I’m not the only one that was resistant to that romance, but I think it helped that I didn’t guess since I would have felt the same way with the eye rolling ;-)

  8. <——- still needs to read book 2 but glad to hear that overall it was an excellent ending!
    Felicia the Geeky Blogger recently posted…Review: Jane Austen Cover to Cover by Margaret C. SullivanMy Profile

  9. I really liked this book, I thought it was a pretty decent ending, though I liked Dark Triumph better. I felt the same about the romance, until (well I think you know when). But it’s one of my favorite couples now!
    Erin BookNut recently posted…The Thing About Booklook Bloggers…My Profile

  10. Whenever I read a review for this series I ask myself the same question: why haven’t I read it already? It sounds like something I would enjoy…
    Great review.
    Dragana recently posted…Book Review: Her Mad Hatter by Marie HallMy Profile

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