Hi again! Today we are going to be talking about Poison Dance, a novella by Livia King Blackburne. This novella focuses on James, who will be a character in the novel that releases in 2014, Midnight Thief. I was really interested in Midnight Thief when I read its summary, and the mysterious leader of the Assassin Guild definitely sounded like a character I would be interested in meeting. Well, Poison Dance is his backstory, and it was fantastic to meet James. He is going to be a character to watch in Midnight Thief, and this was a great way to get to know him.
James is skilled, efficient, and deadly, a hired blade navigating the shifting alliances of a deteriorating Assassin’s Guild. Then he meets Thalia, an alluring but troubled dancing girl who offers him a way out—if he’ll help her kill a powerful nobleman. With the Guild falling apart, it just might be worth the risk. But when you live, breathe, and love in a world that’s forever flirting with death, the slightest misstep can be poison. Poison dance is approximately 14,000 words, or 54 printed pages.
Now, let's talk about the characters. James is a great character- he reveals little about himself directly. Instead, his character is revealed in mannerisms and thoughts that subtly develop a really interesting assassin. His cohorts were great, too- the group had a very balanced dynamic. Bacchus is boisterous and outspoken, and Rand is quietly mysterious. James is levelheaded and guarded, which is definitely needed at the novella's opening, as things within the Guild are changing rapidly.
Speaking of the Guild, that was another aspect I really enjoyed about this book. The Assassin's Guild is not picture perfect and a dark, all powerful organization. It's flawed, and the Guild is going through a rough transition, and I think that this presentation of it was a refreshing change. By the novella's end I'm really interested to see where the Guild and everyone will go.
I really enjoyed this novella, and I think it is a great read and introduction to the world. The world is really great as well. One of the main things I appreciated was how everything was done in balance, and not perfect. The world was somewhere that could have existed, and the people are not flat characters. Although I wish there had been more time to develop the ending and the world, within the confines of a novella I like what the author did- briefly giving us a glimpse of this world and, most importantly, developing James's character. I would say this is a worthwhile read, and it gets 4.5 stars from me. I think the reason it's four and a half stars is because I thought the ending was a little bit rushed, but this is an excellent novella and a great introduction to the series. I cannot wait for the book to come out in 2014 and hope you guys will check this world out too!
As a disclaimer, I was sent a copy of this novella. It has not affected my review and I had already expressed interest in the series before I was given a copy of the novella. I definitely love this world and I really can't wait to see more of it!
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From a paper world,