Review: Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers

Rating: ★★★★
Author: Robin LaFevers
Series: His Fair Assassin #2
Genre: Historical Fiction, Young Adult
Format: E-Book
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books For Children
Publication Date: April 2013

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?

Oh how I have missed this world of assassins, deceit and the pageantry of the court. I went into Dark Triumph with admittedly unrealistic expectations. Grave Mercy was my favorite book last year(you can read my review here ) and I knew that its sequel would be set against some pretty high standards. However, I was pleasantly surprised that Dark Triumph not only met my expectations but actually exceeded them!

In a book filled with death some of the best parts of Dark Triumph actually deal with Love. Not only the love of body and soul but also the love of family and country. While Death may be Sybella's gift it's love that gives her purpose. Sybella's unexpected romance was one of Dark Triumph's highlights. I loved Beast! He might not be handsome in the traditional sense but he is the best person  for Sybella. Not only can Beast match wits with her but he knows how to best her at her own games! I really hope they get their happily ever after in the end. I don't think I could take the heartbreak if Sybella lost her soulmate.

I also really loved the character Yannic. Even though the character could not speak his presence was always felt. This might sound awful but he reminded me of a faithful dog whose loyalty knows no end. Yannc's only mission is to protect his master and will do whatever necessary to achieve this. While he might be a minor character in the scheme of things he certainly is one of my favorites.

Now while Dark Triumph has many well written characters it's d'Albert that will probably remain the most memorable of them all. What a ruthless, evil, no good bastard he is! I didn't think I could hate a character so completely until d'Albert. One of the most cringeworthy scenes involving him had me nearly drop my Kindle in revulsion. He deserves so much worse than the blade of Sybella's knife could ever cause. Oh how I would of loved seeing him drawn and quartered. Never did I think I'd see the day where I would wish that horror on a character but he is so vile and loathsome that it is certainly no less than he deserves. Next to d'Albert I have very little love for the Abbess. I do not trust that woman and do not for one moment believe she has the Kingdoms best interest at heart. Hopefully we learn more of her intentions in the next book.

Overall, I really have no complaints regarding Dark Triumph. Like Grave Mercy the imagery was perfectly detailed and the world building was pitch perfect. Dark Triumph has something for everyone action, lust, murder, romance and best of all Death. We even get to catch up with Ismae! While her role is relatively small compared to Sybella's it is nonetheless important. I cannot wait for the next book in this series spring 2014 cannot come soon enough! With that being said, I will be rating Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers ★★★★★.


  1. I have heard so much awesomeness for this book it's making me really want to read it even though I didn't love the first one. Well I liked it enough it was a 3 star but not enough to get me excited for this one. I was just so lost with the political scandals of it and who was who--it was a little too much historical politics for me. Sounds like this one may be more about the characters themselves and not some crazy politics so that's a good sign! :)

    1. I definitely believe you'll find Dark Triumph more enjoyable then. If you do decide to read it, I can't wait to hear what you think.

  2. I loved this book a lot-Beast was my favorite character in Grave Mercy and I was so pleased to see more of him!

  3. Wooo, now this is what I wanted to hear!! SO happy this one exceeded your expectations because dang, was Grave Mercy ever a hard act to follow! So to hear you sing this book's praises so much - very impressive and encouraging. I am already disturbed by d'Albert just from reading your description, haha. I hope I get to read this soon! Nicely reviewed, Kristin.

    1. I actually gasped at one scene it was brutal and beyond cruel. I wanted to run to Sybella and give her a hug so bad. :(


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