Tuesday, July 1, 2014

ARC Review: Knight Assassin by Rima Jean

Seventeen-year-old Zayn has special powers she cannot control—powers that others fear and covet. Powers that cause the Templar Knights to burn Zayn’s mother at the stake for witchcraft. When a mysterious stranger tempts Zayn to become the first female member of the heretical Assassins, the chance to seek her revenge lures her in. She trains to harness her supernatural strength and agility, and then enters the King of Jerusalem's court in disguise with the assignment to assassinate Guy de Molay, her mother’s condemner. But once there, she discovers Earic Goodwin, the childhood friend who still holds her heart, among the knights—and his ocean-blue eyes don’t miss a thing. Will vengeance be worth the life of the one love she has left?

First line:
Zayn kept her eyes lowered as she walked, her heart thumping.
ARC via Netgalley
Release Date:
 March 4, 2014
4 bows out of 5
I fell in love with Rima Jean fantastical historical fiction novel. Set in ancient Israel/Syria, Rima puts a magical twist on a man-dominated society. The characters jumped off the page and the scenery was well described. I really hope to more of Zayn and Earic to see more of their adventures after the story ends.

Zayn's mother is burned before her eyes and she seeks revenge against the man who ordered her death. Junaid comes offering to train her in the ways of the Assassins and promising vengeance if she comes with him. Zayn must learn to overcome the depression that hits her often and learn to trust people again. Zayn is impulsive and strong-willed. Her spirit and bravery were enjoyable to read about. Her determination is admirable.

Earic is a kind-hearted Christian who befriended Zayn when they were young. He does not want to become a Templar Knight but does so out of necessity. He is gracious and kind and mysteriously strong. I liked seeing Earic and Zayn rekindle their friendship from their younger years.

It was interesting seeing the dynamics between Muslims and Christians, Franks and Syrians in the novel. Both groups hate each other, yet they find themselves with the same enemy. The relationship between men and women was another interesting dynamic. Ancient Middle-East was definately a male-dominated society. Zayn's mother, Miriam, was a single-mother and was scorned for that and called a whore among other things. I hope that you guys like reading about these relationships, too.

If you like historical fiction and don't mind it having a fantasy element, Knight Assassin is definitely for you.

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