Oh my god. Talk about a rollercoaster of a book. It had highs and lows (in terms of people dying you really wanted to live), and that ending… I honestly can’t get over it. After I finished the book I spent the next ten minutes just saying the words ‘Oh my god’ over and over again. My sister was a bit freaked out, but honestly… it was just a stunner of an ending.
Anyway. Onto the full review of ‘Godsgrave’ by Jay Kristoff!
Conquer your fear, conquer the world
Mia Corvere, destroyer of empires, has found her place among the Blades of Our Lady of Blessed Murder, but many in the Red Church ministry do not believe she has earned it.
Her position is precarious, and she’s still no closer to exacting revenge for the brutal death of her family. But after a deadly confrontation with an old enemy, Mia begins to suspect the motives of the Red Church itself.
When it is announced that Consul Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo will be making a rare public appearance at the conclusion of the grand games in Godsgrave, Mia defies the Church and sells herself into slavery for a chance to fulfill the promise she made on the day she lost everything.
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, secrets are revealed and the body count rises within the collegium walls, Mia will be forced to choose between her loyalties and her revenge.
“The heavens grant us only one life, but through books, we live a thousand.”
Yes, Jay Kristoff. Yes. You speak the truth.
There were some great lines to this book – the above quote being one of them. I loved the words, the descriptions, the characters. The worldbuilding is epic, and once you get used to the footnotes that create the stunning world Jay Kristoff is writing about, you’ll really fall head over heels in love with this series.
This is the second book in the series. If you want to know my thoughts on the first book, ‘Nevernight’, check it out here. But be warned. If you haven’t read the first book yet, there may be spoilers and not just in the synopsis.
The first book was read as part of my book club (which you can check out here, as well as the Instagram I set-up for it… shamelessly plugging that in!), and we loved the book so much we decided to read two books for September, ‘Godsgrave’ being one of them.
‘Godsgrave’ picks up where ‘Nevernight’ left off. Mia Corvere has achieved her goal of becoming an assassin of the Red Church, in the long game of achieving her revenge on Consul Scaeva and all those who had a part to play in her family’s death.
But while the Red Church has given her a place, not all of them are happy about it. Mia is sent on missions to assassinate various people, but while on a mission she bumps into Ashlinn – the girl who murdered Tric, Mia’s friend and lover, and tried to bring down the Red Church in the first book.
Mia is torn between completing her mission and the fact that Ash used to be her friend. But Ashlinn explains her reasoning behind what she did, and also opens Mia’s eyes to a new understanding of the Red Church. Knowing she can’t complete her revenge while being in the Church, Mia creates a plan. A crazy plan, and one that is steeped in blood.
She sells herself into slavery and joins the Gladiattii, intent on making her way towards the concluding Games so she can assassinate Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo.
So begins a whirlwind of blood and glory, monsters and mayhem. Mia has countless games and trials she needs to win to get her there, and with the help of her shadow friends Eclipse and Mister Kindly, as well as Ashlinn, she just might make it – that’s of course if she doesn’t die in any of her fights. And where should she train, but her family’s old home – The Crow’s Nest’? Her secrets about who she is have to stay buried as long as possible.
Oh I loved every minute of this book. Like I said, Jay Kristoff is a complete whiz at worldbuilding and character building. I love Mia so much. There were times I faltered in that love – I’ll admit. There were times I was shocked at her actions… I won’t spoil it for you. But in the end she was the Mia I knew and loved, and yet there are so many unanswered questions waiting in the wings over that ending. What will Mia do now?
“That’s the power of words: twenty-six little letters can paint a whole universe.”
Oh yes. Jay Kristoff paints a whole universe here. There’s a whole menagerie of characters, from the very young to the downright dastardly. Mia is the best of the best, but there are other characters I enjoyed just as much. Bryn and Byern were awesome and amazing, I could witness their turns around the track as I read their escapades and experience with bows and arrows. I was fascinated by some of the monsters in the book, including the Silkling. Where does Jay get his ideas from? They’re just awesome.
I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a series so much, to be honest. Probably Brandon Sanderson, so that’s telling you something. This series really matches up to him, so I say Jay Kristoff is a definite author to check out. I’ve read a few books of his now, and am eager to continue this series and read the final book.
So, if you’re stuck on something to read, check out this series. You won’t be disappointed… In fact, you’ll be entranced.
Thank you to World of Books for my copy.
I give it 5 out of 5 stars.
Buy it Secondhand from World of Books
Kate @ Kandid Chronicles