Kissen kills gods for a living, and she enjoys it. That is until she finds a god she cannot kill: Skediceth, god of white lies, who is connected to a little noble girl on the run.
Elogast fought in the god war, and helped purge the city of a thousand shrines before laying down his sword. A mysterious request from the King sends him racing back to the city he destroyed.
On the way he meets a godkiller, a little girl and a littler god, who cannot find out about his quest.
This book (which incidentally is one of the prettiest books I’ve ever seen) has an explosive start – a family sacrificed to the gods, with just one survivor – Kissen – who loses a leg in the fire and gains a huge thirst for vengeance.
After this powerful beginning, the book slows down and meanders along, with some action but not enough to make it a one-sitting-read. This is a little frustrating, as the anticipation was huge, but the concept as a whole is good, and there are some strong elements, like the curses, camaraderie and back stories. Perhaps the gentle plot is because it’s YA.
The ending is not as impactful as one would hope; it feels like the end of Part I in a fantasy book, rather than the end of Book I. There is not enough peril or power, yet it is not quite a cosy fantasy. The sex scene is also extremely awkward to read.
However, the characters are excellent and really make the book special. Kissen is a typical grumpy warrior with a chip on her shoulder. When she meets Inara, we start to see her softer side: a fierce loyalty and a caring nature. Inara is the real firecracker though; she starts the book as a confused child who has lost everything, but by the end of it she is a stubborn, determined fighter.
Skediceth is intriguing – a god in a world where gods are banned, is he good, or bad? Why is he connected to Inara and what is his true purpose? Elogast is one who will become more interesting; we know a little of his past, but no doubt more will be revealed in the next book. The side characters also add a lot to the story, particularly Kissen’s ‘sisters’.
If you’re looking for a book with elements of The Hunger Games, Northern Lights and The Canterbury Tales, then Godkiller is it and I look forward to seeing the characters and story develop in the next instalment.
Thanks to Harper Voyager for my proof copy. Opinions my own.