Review: The Guild of Assassins by Anna Kashina


Publisher: Angry Robot
Publishing Date: August 2014
ISBN: 9780857665287
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 1.0/5

Publisher Description: Kara has achieved something that no Majat has ever managed – freedom from the Guild! But the Black Diamond assassin Mai has been called back to face his punishment for sparing her life. Determined to join his fight or share his punishment, Kara finds herself falling for Mai.

Review: Cover art is a lot better than the first novel but not by much.

We now find our intrepid gang of post adolecsents embroiled in Majat code, where Mai spared Kara’s life and has been recalled to the Guild to answer for his impertinence. We not only still find Ellah bumbling around and blushing every time she looks at Mai, but now Kara is blushing as well. Why do you ask? Well, it seems that Kara left the Guild for her love of Prince Douche Baggery, yet just broke up with him in order to go back to the Guild with Mai as she owes him her code of life…blah, blah. So, anyway, as a freshly single Diamond assassin, she finds Mai encamped and soon they are banging their brains out in a clearing (Nora Roberts love scene with arched backs and heavy panting). Wow, Kara must love….er love? What is even more ludicrous is the Jilted Prince is already checking out Princess Hotness Cornupia that just so happens to be at the castle on some exchange program. She is handy with vitriol, sharp as a tack politically, good with a bow and hotter than a two dollar pistol. Good recovery batman. You were only crying your eyes out 2 hours ago.

This all happens within the first third of the novel. Quite astounding really. Love must be a flippant and flighty thing in Majat world.

While I am hard pressed to entertain any seriousness related to the story-line, the author’s overuse of words to expedite scene development still exists in spades. Take for instance “shiver”, “shivered”, “quivered”, “quiver” or “shivers”. Used approximately 72 times. “She shivered as he entered her”…”He shivered as the memories came welling up…” and on and on. As in the first novel we are assaulted with the old “He had mischief in his eyes” and my favorite “He smelled like mountain pine” or “He inhaled her scent of wild flowers”. Fug me.

The fight scenes are still ludicrous. In one instance Mai takes on the Guilds finest warriors with Kara and “moving as one” (as they are bang mates), they take down scads of assassins. YAWN……Well, fug. Of course they are not only the hottest looking assassins around, they are the best of the best as well. Would you have it any other way, minion?

I just don’t get Angry Robot sometimes. They can have the best cutting edge novels and at the same time, publish really weak drivel. While this installment is better than the first, it still needs better story-line and character development. This rushing into and out of relationships in a love quadrangle is not believable. When your main character gives up all she has for love, which is the basis for the whole story-line, and then without a care starts humping someone else, the whole process falls flat. What next? Kara starts banging Princess Cornupia in the third installment?

I want to like this novel, yet there is too much love addled spooge draped in assassins mien. The infatuation levels skyrocket for both Kara and Mai….THE LEGENDS OF THE GUILD! -barf-

3 thoughts on “Review: The Guild of Assassins by Anna Kashina

  1. I wish the authors of books who depend upon scent to describe their characters would give us a hint how these beings got that lingering odor of mountain pine or fresh spring flowers to arrive on the scene 5 minutes before they show up to save the day. It used to be when we could smell someone it indicated bad hygiene. Now it means something quite different. I just read a novel in which the manly man became a manly man by smelling like a room full of tobacco smoke, and women swooned. Love your reviews! I always come away from reading one with a better appreciation for some author’s new technique to describe something mundane. Don’t stop!

  2. …..well, truth kinda hurts at times, lol…..but really nice review…..I still haven’t read the book yet, but based on your review I am wondering if I should bother, it seems like the author kind of changed/removed/morphed the few bits I liked about the first book, lol…..

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