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Source: Finished copy c/o Thomas Allen & Son
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Format: Hardcover, 385 pages
Release Date: April 2, 2013
Sybella arrives at the convent’s doorstep half mad with grief and despair. Those that serve Death are only too happy to offer her refuge—but at a price. The convent views Sybella, naturally skilled in the arts of both death and seduction, as one of their most dangerous weapons. But those assassin's skills are little comfort when the convent returns her to a life that nearly drove her mad. And while Sybella is a weapon of justice wrought by the god of Death himself, He must give her a reason to live. When she discovers an unexpected ally imprisoned in the dungeons, will a daughter of Death find something other than vengeance to live for?
I was worried before starting this novel that I wouldn't enjoy it as much as I did Grave Mercy because of the heroine, Sybella. We didn't see too much of her in the past book but the glimpses of her I did see gave me the impression that I wouldn't be able to relate to her as well, a factor that is always something I look for when reading a novel. It looks like my worries for nothing though because, if anything, I related to Sybella more than Ismae.
I found this to be a more emotionally-charged book than Grave Mercy. While the companion novel certainly had its moments of deep, personal issues, it just seemed more filled with action to me. And I loved the change! Dark Triumph has a personal, psychological lens to it and I couldn't be happier. I connected with the characters and their predicaments so strongly.
Speaking of characters? Beast. I have been waiting for a character like this my ENTIRE LIFE, someone that is just a good, strong, caring person but not necessarily the best-looking. He's physically unattractive but still able to draw people in and make them hang on to his every word? Yes please, male leads that are not shiny robots. Sybella, as mentioned before, was also an amazing protagonist. I loved how unapologetically fierce she was.
Just as with Grave Mercy, the older, more historically-rich feel of the book was great. I found myself slipping into the older speech patterns for days after finishing the book, that's how into it I was.
Well worth a read! I can't wait for Mortal Heart!
5 Golden Crowns!
Cover Comments: Still loving the fierce girls with weapons look. You go, Sybella. Also, have I mentioned I love the spines of these books? Because I love the spines of these books.