Dark Triumph

Dark Triumph

His Fair Assassin Trilogy, Book 2

eBook - 2013
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New York Times Bestseller Spring 2013 Kids' Indie Next List Sybella's duty as Death's assassin in 15th-century France forces her return home to the personal hell that she had finally escaped. Love and romance, history and magic, vengeance and salvation converge in this thrilling sequel to Grave Mercy. Sybella arrives at the convent's doorstep half mad with grief and despair. Those that serve Death are only too happy to offer her refuge—but at a price. The convent views Sybella, naturally skilled in the arts of both death and seduction, as one of their most dangerous weapons. But those assassin's skills are little comfort when the convent returns her to a life that nearly drove her mad. And while Sybella is a weapon of justice wrought by the god of Death himself, He must give her a reason to live. When she discovers an unexpected ally imprisoned in the dungeons, will a daughter of Death find something other than vengeance to live for?
Publisher: 2013
ISBN: 9780547630571

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h
happycanuck
Sep 20, 2017

This book is even slightly better than the first book "Grave mercy" which I liked a whole bunch.

p
Poc_Fada
Nov 07, 2016

Dark, but a worthy second act for His Fair Assassin.

j
jhonnyappleseed2
Jul 13, 2015

Sometimes sequels fall short of the standard set by their first books. Dark Triumph is not one of those cases. Sybella is every bit the fascinating character that Ismae is, though in very different ways. While Ismae is Mortain's mercy, giving her victims either a second chance or a quick death, Sybella is Death's vengeance. She doles out justice to the criminals and protects the victimized. More often than not, I can take the negative experiences of characters in stride, but Sybella's life at the hands of d'Albret left me horrified and in tears. And they just kept coming!! Just when I thought Sybella's suffering had been fully disclosed, there was yet another secret for her to confess, another horror to divulge. But enough about that. The subtle but significant shift to Sybella's mind was masterfully done, so that I had no problem remembering who was narrating, as I sometimes do. And despite his initial anger, Beast's eventual complete acceptance of all of Sybella's past was beautiful. He was just the man she needed; sweet and accepting, but sharing of just enough of her dark side that he won't be repulsed by her duties to Saint Mortain, or her enjoyment of such. Beautiful, monumental second novel in the His Fair Assassin trilogy.

p
puzumaki
May 15, 2015

I found this to be better than I expected. Sybella has a sordid past, which is revealed well. I found Beast an interesting character as well. I thought LeFevers does a good job justifying his goodness, although I have to admit I found he was much more forgiving than I think may be plausible.

FindingJane Feb 24, 2015

Continuing the tale of a beleaguered duchess and her loyal retinue, “Dark Triumph”, the second book in the “His Fair Assassin” series, takes us deep into the heart, mind and tortured lifestyle of Sybella, a girl introduced in “Grave Mercy”.

Sybella is not as stable or merciful as Ismae is and the reasons for that are laid out in painful strokes. Her lifestyle prior to joining the convent has molded her into a vicious weapon as she resorts to methods more violent and bloody than Ismae’s quiet use of poisons. But Sybella has her own brand of mercy as she, too, is a daughter of a fearful but just god.

It’s a powerful tale, filled with gore, blood-stained battlefields, vicious fights and no-holds-barred sparring that befits the times and the nature of its people. Like Ismae, Sybella finds herself teamed up with a consort who matches her in spirit and joins her in battle and their burgeoning romance is as compelling as that of her gentler sister. The panoply of characters that join or hinder Sybella in her efforts to help the 13-year-old duchess to escape the murderous fiend is also on display. If their thoughts aren’t as meticulously laid out as Sybella’s, their actions are.

The author has done a superb job of showing us the underpinnings of a former time in history, including secondary characters such as laundrywomen, smiths, guardsmen and a mysterious band of gypsy-like people called charbonnerie. (The only people conspicuous by their absence are the so-called camp followers. Sybella is constantly being mistaken for one but such women aren’t shown in the book and you’d think there would be one or two in a country under constant threat of warfare.)

This is a grand epic and, as before, vastly appealing in its portrayal of an unlikely convent of assassin-trained women.

KateHillier Jan 16, 2015

I really, really enjoyed Grave Mercy so I figured I'd get at least a minor kick out of this. I was also braced for sequel let down but have no fear here. I think I liked this one a lot more than Grave Mercy, and I us I just said, I really, really enjoyed that one.

It's a sequel to the events of the first book but events pick up at a point that corresponds to the last third of the first book and then goes on. We've seen bits and pieces of Sybella but this story is all about Sybella, her harrowing assignment in the d'Albret household, and what happens when she unintentionally ends up leaving it.

Sybella, like Ismae, has not had an easy life. Sybella is Lady Sybella d'Albret, however, so that puts her in a very good position for the convent's purposes despite how unhealthy it is for her to be back in an extremely abusive environment.

Dark Triumph goes to much darker places that its predecessor (at some point a character draws a comparison between Ismae and Sybella in that Sybella truly enjoys killing where Ismae is just earnest about it) but there is a dash of a love story in here, continuing plots within plots, and all the great things that you loved in the first one.

I can't wait to get to third one but I'm also going to be so sad when it's over.

j
JCLHebahA
May 22, 2014

Readers who felt LaFevers was holding back in Grave Mercy will be satisfied by this installment which is, if possible, even darker than the first. The story picks up right after the events of the first book, but centered on Sybella, who has been sent to infiltrate D'Albret's household and thwart his plans. Unfortunately, this places the damaged girl right back in her childhood home, home to her abusers and her demons. Dark Triumph goes to darker places than its predecessor, but it also provides a more intriguing heroine, one who simultaneously fears that she is tainted by her upbringing yet also enjoys the art of killing. Can't wait to see how this trilogy ends!

w
weirdnshort
Jul 29, 2013

This is the second book of the series His Fair Assassin. Although it is a sequel, the main characters are different from the first book. It can be a standalone. I like this more than the first book because Sybella is a more interesting character. She grew up in a noble, but very ruthless household and she struggles to differentiate herself from her family. She trains to be an assassin for Martain for vengeance and not all is what it seems.
I would recommend this for 15+

Monikan21 Jul 06, 2013

Very enjoyable - I can't wait for "Mortal Heart"

ChristchurchLib May 07, 2013

"Robin LaFevers' sensational His Fair Assassin series continues with the story of Lady Sybella, an extremely damaged young woman who serves Mortain, the god of Death, by killing those who have been "marqued" by His hand. When Sybella is ordered back to her childhood home (and personal hell) to spy on her wicked father, she waits hopefully for the order to kill him - but Mortain has other plans and instead orders her to rescue her father's enemy, the Beast of Waroch. Set in 15th-century France, this story is packed with action, adventure, and unexpected romance." May 2013 Teen Scene newsletter http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=629709

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EricaMcKay
Aug 02, 2015

EricaMcKay thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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weirdnshort
Jul 29, 2013

weirdnshort thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

vitriolic7eyes Apr 21, 2013

vitriolic7eyes thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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"Vengeance is divine"

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Chelsea016
Sep 02, 2016

I must have faith, but having faith is hard, so very much harder than despair

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Chelsea016
Sep 02, 2016

I am left with the conviction that an avalanche would be easier to dissuade than that man.

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