Assassin’s Heart by Monica Burns (Order of the Sicari #2)
September 7, 2010
Trade Paperback, 368 Pages
Reviewed by Mandi
Favorite Quote: “Kiss me and I’ll show you what to believe,” she said in a voice that challenged him to listen to his heart and nothing else.
The Sicari are an ancient order of people and Lysander has lived his life fighting as one of their best. Now Legatus, or head of his order, it is a daily struggle to keep the demons and dark side of him at bay while he is the leader his team has come to expect. After being tortured at the hands of the Sicari’s nemesis, the Praetorians a year ago, he is left with only one eye, and half of his face severely disfigured. To make matters worse, the Praetorian who tortured him happens to be his father, and now he has to deal with the fact that he is one-half the enemy, a deep, dark secret he can’t bear to share with anyone.
Before his torture a year ago, he spent a passionate night with Phaedra, a Sicari healer. But after the torture, and the shame of finding out who his birth father is, he has pushed her brutally away. Phaedra is confused, and has been yearning for Lysander this past year. She could care less about his disfigurement, and only wants him to open up, and share what haunts him. As she pushes his boundaries, Lysander digs deeper into himself. They also have an important mission, the reason they are in Rome. They believe an ancient artifact, The Tyet of Isis is near, and with the rest of the crew, they go off on a search to bring a very valuable artifact into safe keeping, before the Praetorians get their evil fingers on it.
Assassin’s Heart is book two in Monica Burn’s Sicari series, and while I enjoyed book one, I think I liked this one even better. The prologue is completely antagonizing with the details of Lysander’s torture a year ago. It shows how strong he is mentally, but it also shows the fear and pain he had to endure. I’m really glad Monica Burns included it, because Lysander is such a broken hero, it gives us a very good understanding of where he is coming from.
There are a lot of things going on in this book, but all the events work really well together and present a book that will have you interested until the end. First we have Lysander and Phaedra’s dramatic love story. And I say dramatic because the angst and tension in this relationship will have you either biting your nails or banging your head against a wall. At times I became frustrated that Lysander would not give an inch and let Phaedra in on his secrets. I will say he stays true to his character until the very end, and for that I give Monica Burns a lot of credit. I wanted to grab Lysander and shake him, but Phaedra eventually does that for me. If you enjoy tortured heroes, Lysander is the guy for you.
We also get the story of Atia, the Prima Consul, or Lysander’s boss in basic terms and her very complicated relationship with the Sicari lord, Marcus. I won’t go into a lot of their story, but it is heartbreaking, and really adds a lot to this book. I really look forward to getting more from them further in the series. We also get some pretty bad dudes in the villain department, and some cool twists that make them much more than just villains looking in from the outside.
Now that I have read both of these books, I can say this is a series where I find myself anticipating the next one. With adventure and romance, angst and tension, this book is a really fun read.
This series includes:
Monica Burns will be back tomorrow with a guest blog!