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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke

Title: The Assassin's Curse
Author: Cassandra Rose Clarke
Publisher: Angry Robot / Strange Chemistry
Length: 320 pages
Editions: ebook, print

Ananna of the Tanarau abandons ship when her parents try to marry her off to an allying pirate clan: she wants to captain her own boat, not serve as second-in-command to her handsome yet clueless fiance. But her escape has dire consequences when she learns the scorned clan has sent an assassin after her.

And when the assassin, Naji, finally catches up with her, things get even worse. Ananna inadvertently triggers a nasty curse — with a life-altering result. Now Ananna and Naji are forced to become uneasy allies as they work together to break the curse and return their lives back to normal. Or at least as normal as the lives of a pirate and an assassin can be

I. Loved. This. Book.

LOVED. IT. Borrowed it from the library in order to prepare for the NetGalley approval I just got for The Pirate's Wish which is book two. Do you guys have favorite publishing houses? I'm fast becoming a publishing house groupie based on the novels I've been reading.

The story is told from the viewpoint of Ananna of the Taranau. We meet her and are seeing the story through her thoughts as she is being shoved into an arranged marriage to the son of another pirate, and she is NOT happy about it. Her observations and thoughts make this completely clear. Her speech patterns are that of which you would expect from a pirate: not smooth, kinda crass but not as bad since she is a young woman I guess, and very top of your head kind of speech. Lots of ain't's and KAOL! (in my head I was hearing Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady "Corrrrr!") etc. Ananna runs away, makes her escape, and promptly has an assassin sent after her in revenge for her unforgivable abandonment of the arranged marriage.

During her encounter with the assassin, she sees a venomous snake about to bite him and for some inexplicable reason, kills the snake. And now...the assassin is bound to her, sworn to protect her.

Ananna is such a likable character! She's feisty and tough, but with little peeks of tenderness and vulnerability that just make you fall in love with her. Naji is the same - you know there is a story, but he keeps it as veiled as he does his face. As they journey together, stuck yet growing on one another, I started crushing on this story and the characters SO much.

I knew that there was going to be a book 2 at the least. I did. So I was expecting an open ending, but it still bothered me! There are questions I have because Ananna hasn't had them answered fully yet by Naji. I just KNOW that there will be more of everything: more mystery, more magic, more sweet interactions, a slow building of love and trust. It was so sweet when Ananna says to Naji, very simply, "Cause you're my friend." GAH! Lovely. YAY ONTO BOOK TWO!