Tuesday, March 04, 2014 17:22

Review 237. Leah Cypess – Death sworn.

13549218Title: Death Sworn.
Author: Leah Cypess.
Pages: 352.
Expected publication: March 4th 2014 by Greenwillow.
Sort: Part one ‘Death Sworn’
Source: Edelweiss & Publisher.
When Ileni lost her magic, she lost everything: her place in society, her purpose in life, and the man she had expected to spend her life with. So when the Elders sent her to be magic tutor to a secret sect of assassins, she went willingly, even though the last two tutors had died under mysterious circumstances. But beneath the assassins’ caves, Ileni will discover a new place and a new purpose… and a new and dangerous love. She will struggle to keep her lost magic a secret while teaching it to her deadly students, and to find out what happened to the two tutors who preceded her. But what she discovers will change not only her future, but the future of her people, the assassins… and possibly the entire world.

Rating:
This book was hard to rate and in the end I based it on two different ratings. Entertainment level: 4, but the story itself deserves 1 stars. I thought it was a very quick and easy story to read, with assassins and magic. But, I had problem with the shallow plot and how the characters act. I didn't buy the romance and I was hoping for more action and depth.

Ileni is a brave seventeen-year old girl who is losing her magic. She grew up as a Renegai sorceress, but her powers are starting to get weak and that’s why she is sent to the Assassins cave. Assassins and magicians are living in peace with each other because of a pact: there must always be a Renegai to train the assassins with potential magic powers. The latest two died in strange ways and it’s up to Ileni to find out what happened to them. Sorin grew up as assassin with the Master took him away from the streets. He has blind faith in the Master (the same with all the other assassins) and he will do anything to please him. He is tasked with the protection of Ileni and the two of them research the strange Renegai’s deaths.

I really liked how the story starts. I was immediately hooked by Ileni and her braveness. She is not afraid to die and it was sad to see how she tries to cope with the fact that the Renegai’s are willing to sacrifice her. She left a lover behind and I liked her struggle with her new feelings for Sorin. It was also interesting to see how she deals with the loss of her magical powers. The only thing is, when Sorin and Ileni admit they like each other, she turns into a soppy mess. I just wish she stayed true to herself, like Sorin. It was hard to connect with him. His loyalty is creepy, but also fascinating at the same time. The fact that someone is capable of gaining so much trust is crazy. I didn't like them together. There is something off about their chemistry and I was never swept away by their romance. It didn't felt genuine to me.

There is also the mystery behind the death of two Renegai’s. It adds a certain tension to the story, especially with some of the dangerous assassins who aren’t trying to hide their hate for Ileni. The only thing is, nothing really happens. It’s more character-driven with a hint of mystery and not the action I expect when I think of assassins. It was enjoyable and the ending makes me interesting for more, but don’t expect too much. It's a shame that the cover is prettier than the inside.
author image

Mel@thedailyprophecy

Mel is a microbiology technician who is obsessed with Disney, fairytale retellings and fantasy. If she's not reading or blogging, she's either busy with gaming, hanging out with family or watching a TV show. She loves summer and bright nail polish. One of her dreams is to travel the world. She has found her Prince Charming and they are together for 7+ years.

26 comments:

  1. Aww. I'm so sorry that you didn't like this one much Mel! I really loved it. But I do understand how you feel. Thank you for sharing and being honest. <3

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  2. The setup sounds very cool - a magician and an assassin falling in love. I would probably hope for some action and conspiracy too, but this sounds more romance centered. I did see a lot of good reviews from other people though, so maybe I will check it out if I have time :) Thanks for the review Mel!

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    1. I definitely can see why some people will love it :)

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  3. It's a shame this one didn't live up to the promising summary and the prettiness of the cover for you. I'll probably be still checking it out for myself regardless, as it does have some promising elements in it, despite the lack of actions for an assassin-featured book. :/

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  4. Interesting. A character driven, assassin story. Not what I would have expected either!

    I definitely would have been turned off by how Ileni turned all sappy once she confessed her feelings for Sorin; why couldn't she be romantic AND stay true to her bad-ass self?

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    1. Yes, it was such a waste of her potential personality.

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  5. A soppy mess? *Shakes head* That is not a good sign. I've heard a lot of good things about Ileni as an individual character, though, so I'm still pretty interested in this book. Lovely review, Melanie!

    Aimee @ Deadly Darlings (new blog name!)

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  6. It was the opposite for me, I didn't enjoy the first half but when bitd of informationabout the deaths of the tutors prior to her (and that 'guy' was involved to it), it became really interesting to me. But I agree it wasn't half bad, lots of potential though.

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  7. I do love excellent characters in my books (who doesn't?), but when it has ASSASSINS, there should be more action. I'm glad that it's not quite as low as 2 stars, but the fact that it seems like a big disappointment will have me staying away. Love the review!

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    1. Yes, I was expecting more, you know, assassinations :p

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  8. This looked like such a promising series, but I've heard a number of people say the plot wasn't very good :/ Sorin seems a bit weird too. I don't know how I would feel about Ileni falling in love with him.

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  9. Um yeah, I didn't end up being a big fan of this one earlier. I am SO glad I have half stars in general, though I gave this one a two, because I didn't connect with the MC as much as you did. I loved her at first, but I thought the characterization was really inconsistent, and the plot went CRAZY. Like when they scaled that cliff for like two chapters, realize they can't get back up, and he constructs some stairs out of stalagmites in like a paragraph. What even?

    It wasn't a painfully boring read, but I was pretty disappointed.

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    1. This was definitely a book where I missed my 2.5 stars. I agree, I've read worse books, but it's still not good.

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  10. Hmm... I'm definitely intrigued by that 4 star rated entertainment, but I think I would have similar problems with the characters, ect. so I'm not planning to add it to my TBR. Ileni sounds like a really intreresting character, though the romance sounds a little peculiar- if her whole persona/person changes when she falls in love then I think that would be a little frustrating.
    Sorry it didn't work better, Mel!

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  11. This one is on my list and will try to read it because I love fantasy. That cover is awesome, so it's too bad it doesn't meet expectations.

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  12. Well, I'm pleased that on the entertainment scale this one measured up but I'm sad that the story just didn't do it for you! The romance bits you described might bug me too when I read it (soon I hope) so I'm glad you warned us about that aspect.When then MC changes too much after falling for a boy, it tends to frustrate me.I'm still really intrigued about the magical system and the fact that we're dealing with assassins though hehe Lovely review Mel ^^ xx

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    1. Yes, assassins are always appealing in books!

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  13. I've seen a a lot of mixed reviews for this one. I also picked this up at ALA and fantasy is my jam, so I'll read it at some point, but it is good to know that it is more character driven and that the romance isn't perfect. I expect too much out of it and just try to enjoy it as it is!

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  14. Aw, sorry this didn't work for you all that well. I actually enjoyed it a good amount and liked the romance aspect. I thought the story could have used a tad more depth but I'm still excited to where the next book takes us. Do you think you'll read the next one?

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    1. Yes, I think I will give it a try :) I liked it enough to be curious about the next book.

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  15. Ohh, you have made me very tempted to read Death Sworn now Mel! I always can't resist books that entertain me. It's kind of the main reason why I read the first place. :P
    Ha ha, I wonder how Sorin will appear to me. I love loyalty in guys, but creepiness is a big no-no.
    Great review Mel! :D

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