Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers
Released November 4, 2014.
The third in the His Fair Assassin trilogy, this book follows a third sister from the convent of Mortain. Annith has been kept at the convent longer than her two friends and has never been sent on assignment. Now she has excelled at all of her training to such an extent that she has surpassed the skills of many of her teachers. With their Seeress very ill, Annith is proposed to be the next Seeress for the convent, but that would mean that she would never leave, be stuck in stuffy rooms all the rest of her life, and would never put her skills to use. So Annith works to make sure that the existing Seeress survives her illness, spending long hours nursing her back to health. When she discovers that even then she will not be sent into the field, she begins to question whether the convent and the Abbess are truly doing the work of Mortain. So Annith escapes, heading out to see what Mortain has planned for her and her life. Soon Annith is caught up in the perils of traveling across a war-torn country, fighting for her and her country’s freedom, and falling in love.
LaFevers ends her trilogy on a high note with this book about Annith. Her trilogy has focused on a different daughter of Mortain in each book, offering a strong cohesion across the series but also a unique perspective and voice with each new protagonist. Each of the girls is quite different from the other, yet all of them have their demons to face and problems to overcome. Placed against a backdrop of war and political intrigue, the books ride that wave of ferocity, honor and strategy to great effect.
Annith herself is a very intriguing character. While the other two books in the series showed her as friendly but rather aloof, this book delves deeply into her motivations and how she came to be the person she is. As each layer is revealed, her complex personality makes sense and as she begins to leverage it to create the life she wants and deserves, she becomes all the more passionate and powerful. LaFevers writing is so readable, it gallops along at a fast pace but also is clearly trained and focused.
A fitting end to a grand trilogy, I can’t wait to see what LaFevers has for us next! Appropriate for ages 14-17.
Reviewed from digital galley received from HMH Books for Young Readers and Edelweiss.