Red Sister (Book of the Ancestor #1)
by Mark Lawrence
What is it about:
At the Convent of Sweet Mercy young girls are raised to be killers. In a few the old bloods show, gifting talents rarely seen since the tribes beached their ships on Abeth. Sweet Mercy hones its novices’ skills to deadly effect: it takes ten years to educate a Red Sister in the ways of blade and fist.
But even the mistresses of sword and shadow don’t truly understand what they have purchased when Nona Grey is brought to their halls as a bloodstained child of eight, falsely accused of murder: guilty of worse.
Stolen from the shadow of the noose, Nona is sought by powerful enemies, and for good reason. Despite the security and isolation of the convent her secret and violent past will find her out. Beneath a dying sun that shines upon a crumbling empire, Nona Grey must come to terms with her demons and learn to become a deadly assassin if she is to survive…
What did I think of it:
Novices trained to become killer nuns? Count me in!
Yes, the premise of killer nuns and the fact that it's a sort of boarding school story sold me on this book. And luckily it didn't disappoint.
Nona is both relatable and an unreliable narrator and I was hooked from the start. It was fun to read about the training the girls got, and to discover more about Nona and her past. Next to a more sinister plot there's lots of rivalry and teenage pettiness going on, so there isn't a dull moment in this book.
The worldbuilding left me with a few questions. It clearly hints that the people in this world arrived on spaceships. Still they seem to live in a Medieval world. Where did all the technology and knowledge of that technology go? I'll have to read the whole series to see if it is explained, I'm afraid.
That aside I very much enjoyed this book, so I'll be getting my trotters on book two once it's available in paperback.
Why should you read it:
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