Oh Daughters. You didn’t think I’d be able to stay away for long, did you? Even despite… things… happening in Nevernight that broke my poor, weak little heart… I am back for more.
Because gods above, of course I am. Are you kidding!?
Thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for allowing me an early foray into the continuing world of Nevernight.
Assassin Mia Corvere has found her place among the Blades of Our Lady of Blessed Murder, but many in the Red Church ministry think she’s far from earned it. Plying her bloody trade in a backwater of the Republic, she’s no closer to ending Consul Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo, or avenging her familia. And after a deadly confrontation with an old enemy, Mia begins to suspect the motives of the Red Church itself.
When it’s announced that Scaeva and Duomo will be making a rare public appearance at the conclusion of the grand games in Godsgrave, Mia defies the Church and sells herself to a gladiatorial collegium for a chance to finally end them. Upon the sands of the arena, Mia finds new allies, bitter rivals, and more questions about her strange affinity for the shadows. But as conspiracies unfold within the collegium walls, and the body count rises, Mia will be forced to choose between loyalty and revenge, and uncover a secret that could change the very face of her world.
“Problem with being a librarian is there’s some lessons you can’t learn from books. And the problem with being an assassin is there’s some mysteries you just can’t solve by stabbing the fuck out of them.”
This book starts out with one of the funniest, most well thought out recaps I’ve ever read. I mean, I did just listen to Nevernight (you can see my review here if you missed it), but I do love a recap, and so of course I read it. Oh, narrator… you’re so great. ❤ ❤ ❤
Another thing that I never really noticed in Nevernight, because I listened to the audiobook, were that the footnotes are goddamned hilarious. They all sort of blend together with the rest of the story in audio. It’s not a bad thing (especially with that narration, goddamn), but it didn’t have that same ‘read a footnote and chuckle’ as this did for me.
THE PLOT THICKENS! In this one, instead of being of Mia becoming an assassin, Mia becomes a Roman Gladiator, more or less. Every few years a giant tournament is held in Godsgrave, and this year, at the tournament, Mia’s mortal enemies, Scaeva and Duomo, make an appearance to crown the winner. So, of course Mia’s mission becomes to win the shit out of that tournament so she can stab them repeatedly. She’s not getting much help from the Ministry of the Red Church on this one… but she is getting help from a very, very unlikely source.
Oh Mia. You’re still snark incarnate, and I think I sort of love you for it. I love your attitude, I love your Darkin fearlessness, I love your willingness to do whatever it takes to get what you want. I love your banter with Mister Kindly, and I love the addition of Eclipse into that dynamic. Differing typefaces to denote Mister Kindly and Eclipse speaking was also a really awesome thing to include. You wouldn’t think that it’s that important in the grand scheme of things, but it really brings a note of je ne sais quoi to the whole thing. I really, really loved Holter Graham’s narration of the first book, and though I am able to read this one early (totally worth it, I promise) there was a part of me that was like ‘but… but… Holter Graham! I must have the audiobook!’
Well, it turns out that reading it in print, with all the footnotes and fonts and awesomeness is just as good as audio, but in a different way. Plus, I can still mentally recall the bonkers awesome narration of Mister Kindly and put it to work while reading Godsgrave.
I didn’t end up liking this one quite as much as I liked Nevernight. I’ll not spoil it for you, but suffice to say that there were choices made that, given what happened at the end of book one, were absolutely maddening to me. Mia is coming to realize some things about her own sexuality at this juncture, and it’s interesting to watch it unfold because it is believable… but I mean… out of everyone to fall for…
Even though Mia’s choices baffled me sometimes, this one was still a definite thrillride of stabbing, sexing, more stabbing, and then some further stabbing all wrapped up in a really rich world of intrigue and mystery. It twisted, it turned and oh my, did it ever blindside me a few times. Absolutely, positively hit me in the face from nowhere.
It’s perfect scary hurricane reading! 😀 I can’t wait for more! (Less hurricane next time tho). 5/5 stars!
Thanks again to the author and St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley for the ARC!~