For most of her life, Katira has trained to take on the role of assassin. While it’s far from the life she would have chosen, the law known as the Inheritance Proclamation dictates that she must follow in her father’s profession. At seventeen, she’ll be expected to use her training on a real assignment any day.
When new information about an old fugitive brings questions about Kat’s past to light, she must make a choice: Prove her loyalties to the Tederan Order and their laws, or become a fugitive to search after answers she may never find.
Assassins. Sweet characters. Strife between lands. What more could you want?
I’ve been following Jameson’s blog for years. It’s been such a pleasure getting to know this sweet, talented girl. So when she announced she was publishing her novel…MUCH SQUEEING. MUCH FLAILING.
The Assassin’s Daughter is the first book in the Inheritance Proclamation series, set in a medieval-esque fantasy setting. The novel goes back and forth between Katira’s POV and her best friend, Ed, with a couple of other points-of-view thrown in occasionally. But the core focus is our girl Kat.
We start out in an academy where they train kids/teens to be professional assassins. Because, dude, math and history are too mainstream, let’s teach the kids to be MURDERERS. Sound plan. *nods*
Well, our sweet Kat doesn’t actually want to be a trained killer and be paid to murder people for the rest of her life. CRAZY, I KNOW. Unfortunately, due to a law known as the Inheritance Proclamation that claims children have to follow the profession of their parents, she’s got no choice. Because, ya know, her FATHER was an assassin. #DaddyProbs
When Kat is assigned her first official mission, it strikes a bit too close to home, and she has to decide if to defy the higher ups (which is a big no-no) or do the unthinkable.
The characters were hands down my favorite things in this novel. The relationships made the story.
Katira: (Or Kat, as she is mostly called.) I superbly appreciated Kat! At first, when I discovered Kat was one of the top rated in the academy, being super skilled with archery and sneaking and all that fun stuff, I feared a stereotypical “strong female character” which these days is pretty much synonymous for “emotionless, selfish, reckless female”. I am so sick of that kind of female protagonist! (But that’s a topic for another day.) Well, Kat wasn’t that way at all. *cheers and applauds* Kat has EMOTIONS. She’s not afraid to cry and love and be afraid. She doesn’t want to be an assassin because KILLING IS WRONG, KIDS. She doesn’t want to be in the academy because she can’t see her mother and baby sister anymore. She doesn’t have the, “I can do anything and don’t need help and am way too tough to cry,” attitude we see so often in female protagonists these days. But she wasn’t the weak and whiny character that happens a lot, too. Again, she’s one of the top rated in the academy. She can handle herself if she needs to. But, deep down, she was soft and sweet and, yes, made mistakes, but she cared about people. She was just a genuinely nice girl thrust into a world she didn’t want to be a part of. To me, she was a breath of fresh air in today’s view of “strong female characters”.
Edellion a.k.a Ed: In an academy where it’s frowned upon to have friendships because they can be a “weakness”, Kat and Ed go against the tide and form a team. Ed is Kat’s rock, and with good reason. He’s strong and protective and caring and makes witty jokes at any given opportunity. And he respects her, which was my favorite part about their friendship. When he knows she has a secret, he doesn’t push her to tell him, but lets her reveal things in her own time. When she’s going through a hard time or just needs a shoulder to cry on, he’s there. He never tells her to tough it out, he simply lets her be her and is always sympathetic. And that respects goes both ways. I think that’s another thing we just don’t see much anymore in YA novels. Aside from their relationship, Ed himself is just a precious human being. He can have a temper, and may rush into things a little too quickly, but he always tries to do what’s right, and that’s what matters.
Bayor: Kat and Ed’s mentor was a lovely addition to the story. He had that classic comfortable mentor personality that every fantasy story needs. He’s a little quiet and rough around the edges, but still makes jokes with Kat and Ed, and tends to care more about them than the law. His character was complex as well. You know he holds secrets, but never can figure out why he does the things he does. I desperately want to know more about this guy! I keep having to remind myself this is only the first book of a series. I’m sure answers will come. But but but I WANTS TO KNOW MORE.
There were a few others that played key roles in the story, but that may be getting into spoilery territory. So I’ll just say, all the characters were deep and complex and human. The relationships between each of them had such depth as well.
I JUST REALLY LOVED THESE BABIES.
I felt like the plot started out a smidge on the slow side, but it did pick up. Overall though, the plot was pretty simplistic. Nothing mind-blowing. BUT. I felt like the real focus of the plot wasn’t on the action, but on Kat’s inner turmoil. On her struggle to break away from a life she doesn’t want and find answers about her past.
With that said, there were still plenty of fun happenings. I was super intrigued by an assassins academy. And later on we get tangled into some strife between the different territories of the world.
I think my biggest complaint was the vagueness of how the government and things worked. The main point of the story is that Kat is forced into this assassins academy, and how the government is trying to take over everything. But…I was super confused how the government type stuff worked and how the academy functioned. There was also a ton of stuff about Kat’s past that never got explained at all. Every time it looked like we were about to get answers, the scene cut off or the characters were interrupted or something. I would have liked a whole lot more explanations and descriptions of things.
But, again, this is the first book of a series, so I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt. It was a good setup to a much bigger story ahead—a great introduction to the characters, leaving me aching for more time spent with them and desperate for more answers. As any first book should be!
Really…nothing! There were definitely some deaths, but they were never described in great, gory detail. There was also not a stitch of language and basically no romance (…yet *cough, cough, cough*). It was a refreshingly clean read!
If you enjoy standard, medieval fantasy with good, down-to-earth characters this is the one for you! The world and plot were pretty straightforward and simplistic, but that just made for a quick, comfortable, clean read.
I cannot wait for book 2!
What think ye, O Readers? Does the idea of an assassins academy intrigue you? Have you read The Assassin’s Daughter? Or ARE you going to?? (Because you should.)