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What: Assassins: Discord (Assassins #1) by Erica Cameron

Who: Riptide Publishing/Triton Books

When: September 5th 2016

How: A copy of this novel was provided by Riptide Publishing for review via Net Galley.

Kindra’s moral compass has never pointed north, but that’s what happens when you’re raised as an assassin and a thief. At sixteen, she’s fantastic with a blade, an expert at slipping through the world unnoticed, and trapped in a life she didn’t chose. But nothing in her training prepares her for what happens when her father misses a target.

In the week-long aftermath, Kindra breaks rank for the first time in her life. She steals documents, starts questioning who their client is and why the target needs to die, botches a second hit on her father’s target, and is nearly killed. And that’s before she’s kidnapped by a green-eyed stranger connected to a part of her childhood she’d almost forgotten.

Kindra has to decide who to trust and which side of the battle to fight for. She has to do it fast and she has to be right, because the wrong choice will kill her just when she’s finally found something worth living for.

3cats2Oh, this review is hard to write. Because on the one hand there were many times that I wanted to DNF Assassins: Discord because it was really, really long, and I also didn’t feel like the plot was moving fast enough (and I was more than a little bored at times). But on the other hand there were elements I liked, and against all my DNF feelings, I did finish it, and I’m quite glad that I pushed through.

Assassins: Discord takes place over a pretty small amount of time, which is why I was surprised that everything moved so slowly. I thought that because it was so action-packed, and there were so many things going on, and heaps of mystery … it would not be slow at all. But it was. Even though there was action, a mysterious storyline, and quite a lot of thrilling scenes I was, for the most part, quite bored. I never felt like enough was happening for me to fall in love with it.

I also wasn’t invested in the main character, Kindra, either. For one thing, I felt like she was too young, which is really rare for me. She’s sixteen, and goes on these missions where she pretends to be a government official. I know I was baby faced at sixteen, but I’m pretty sure no sixteen year old could pull that off efficiently. She also mentioned the fact that she started seducing people in missions four years ago, which means that she was twelve. Unless they were all creepy paedophiles (who knows, they could have been) that timeline is very, severely off.

Most of the plot revolved around shady business, and while I have recently discovered that I enjoy political intrigue, I am not as interested in business shenanigans. I mean, I wanted to see the evil people taken down because they’d killed people (including children), but the storyline wasn’t exactly one that kept me hooked.

I was really on board with the diversity, though. There were a heap of people of colour and queer characters in this book, and I was extremely happy about this. The word “bisexual” was used to describe Kindra’s sexual orientation, and she rebutted a comment about her willing to sleep with anyone, both of which were A+. There’s also an asexual character who uses the word. I would have loved this character to have at least one POV chapter, so that this was a book with an asexual MC who used the word.

I’m not sure whether or not I will read the sequel, but there’s a chance I will. I did end up enjoying some of the storyline (mostly about Kindra’s interaction with her family and another), and I would be interested to see where everything ends up because there wasn’t a whole lot of resolution at the end of Assassins: Discord.

I think if you’re one for movies about shady business people and trying to bring them down, stories that question what you’ve always been told, and books with a heap of diversity then I’d suggest reading Assassins: Discord.

© 2016, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved.

trigger warning: murder + murder of a sibling, attempted murder, torture, forced prostitution + forced prostitution of a minor, domestic violence, emotional abuse, physical assault, and physical abuse in this novel

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Posted on: September 9, 2016 • By: Chiara

9 Responses to An Almost DNF Review of Assassins: Discord by Erica Cameron

  1. I definitely appreciate the diversity and the fact that both bisexual and asexual are actually used in the story. However, it does sound like a bit of a slow read and not entirely believable with the MC”s mission and her age.

    • Chiara says:

      Me, too! They were definitely my favourite aspects of this book, for sure. I just wish the pace had been a little faster (which is a lot coming from me, as I don’t mind slow plots most of the time), and Kindra’s age didn’t fit well, either.

  2. Jackie B. says:

    Good catch on the timelines with Kindra. Stuff like that almost immediately causes a DNF for me, because I need the story I’m reading to be believable, no matter how ludicrous the plotline is! I’m impressed you continued pushing through. Why did you decide not to DNF this book in the end?

    • Chiara says:

      Yeah, I just wish that she’d said a smaller number of years, or that the MC was older, just so that it was a little more believable! Haha, thank you XD I was determined to find out what happened, and once I got to about the 50% mark, I just wanted to be able to say I finished it. And I did end up quite liking it, so I’m glad I was able to give a review with full thoughts on the book!

  3. Jennifer says:

    At what point does it become pandering to readers when “a heap of queer characters” is included? I’m not throwing any shade toward you, Chiara; I just feel like there’s a fine line between a realistic amount of LGBT+ characters and “every character is queer”. Yes, there are tons in the community the world over, but how many does one person interact with on a daily basis? Unless it’s discussed directly or you’re paying attention, you’re not going to know. I can understand if this took place within a camp for LGBT+ people, but this book doesn’t sound like that.

    Again, I’m not throwing shade at anyone, especially you; I’m just curious and want to start a (civilized) discussion.

    • Chiara says:

      This definitely wasn’t pandering to readers, and was also super believable. The MC is bi, her brother is ace, she has a female love interest (whose identity was never spoken about), and then the other queer characters only came in contact with them through circumstances regarding the assassination mission.

      To be honest, I think it is believable that a book can have an entire cast of queer characters. LGBTQIA+ people tend to stick together once they find each other, and what is less believable is when, in a queer book, the only LGBTQIA+ characters are the MC and their love interest – everyone else being cishet.

      • Jackie B. says:

        I completely agree, Chiara. In a world where not everyone is accepting of alternate sexualities, it’s very common for people to make friends with those who are accepting. I know that among my LGBTQIA+ friends, I am one of their single cis friends. I often feel like the outsider in those matters.

  4. Ewww what she seduced officials WHEN SHE WAS 12?! What the even fuck. I’m glad to here that there were some great queer representations here though, but gosh I just can’t get over that creepy paedophilia nonsense *shudders*

  5. Romi says:

    Well, I’m glad you ended up not dnfing this, since you quite enjoyed it by the end, even if it had moments throughout that weren’t the best. I know one of my favourite books in my reviewing career was one I wanted to quit for over half the book (and spent much time whinging about) and that last 100 pages just blew me away. It does kinda make me wonder what about all those other books I DID dnf, because if I loved one then there might be more I could have loved, too, but I also don’t like second-guessing my dnf choices so it’s a path I don’t often walk down. Otherwise my library card would be full up of all these books I once decided weren’t for me and I would never trust my bookish thoughts again.

    I enjoyed your review and thoughts on this a lot, BUT there was one thing I questioned: you didn’t think it was believable a 16 year old could pull it off. Think of Veronica Mars, I ask you, and then say that again. *snorts* I do wonder about the age thing when it comes to seducing people, though, because that… seems a little strange, and I wonder if it was an accidental slip of the timeline or intentional.

    The diversity does sound excellent, and makes me wish that more books were so good with representation. Also, having a a bisexual character (who calls herself bisexual and stands up for herself) at the helm of a non-contemporary novel is amazinggggg and necessary and I’m so happy that this is something I don’t have to dream about, but can actually read about if I choose to.

    xx

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