Three weddings. Three funerals. Alessa’s gift from the gods is supposed to magnify a partner’s magic, not kill every suitor she touches.
Now, with only weeks left until a hungry swarm of demons devours everything on her island home, Alessa is running out of time to find a partner and stop the invasion. When a powerful priest convinces the faithful that killing Alessa is the island’s only hope, her own soldiers try to assassinate her.
Desperate to survive, Alessa hires Dante, a cynical outcast marked as a killer, to become her personal bodyguard. But as rebellion explodes outside the gates, Dante’s dark secrets may be the biggest betrayal. He holds the key to her survival and her heart, but is he the one person who can help her master her gift or destroy her once and for all?
This Vicious Grace is a wonderful debut fantasy novel and having not read too much about it before hand it took me completely by surprise. Everything I enjoy in a fantasy novel was all laid out for me; a compelling storyline, unique setting, interesting magic system and exquisite slow burn romance. I completely fell under the spell of this captivating and page-turning story which is set in an Italian-inspired world.
Alessa is a interesting heroine, she is the Saverio’s Finesta waiting in solitude for a suitable Fonte whom she won’t kill by accident with her deadly touch. She is feared and even hated and has had to disown her family and friends and her loneliness is palpable. Longing for the physical contact she cannot have, my heart broke for her. Alessa is determined to find a way out of her current situation and escape the loneliness that comes with it.
Dante, Alessa’s grumpy bodyguard, may well be one of my new favourite love interests and I completely fell for him. However, it’s Alessa and Dante together that absolutely blew me away. I adored their chemistry, the innuendos, humour and banter. There are so many laugh out loud moments, particularly the scene when they both became intoxicated on whisky and ended up playing ‘truth or dare’. I felt every moment of that first ‘clothed’ hug, the fact that they couldn’t actually touch each other completely melted my heart. I highlighted nearly all of their interactions, the dialogue and connection they have is superb and I can’t enthuse about it enough. It’s their relationship that stood out most for me in the story, particularly in those initial interactions they had.
I didn’t expect to like so many characters, the Fontes and side characters; Kaleb, Nina, Kamaria, Josef, Saida and great character development. There are some wonderful twists and turn in the final chapters, as well as an exciting battle scene. It’s an easy fantasy to read, not too complex as to become confusing and extremely compelling. The writing style is brilliant and I completely engaged with it. I adored every second of this fabulous book.
Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton
Publication Date (UK): 28 June 2022
Series: #1 The Last Finestra
Page Count: 448
Genre: YA Fantasy
Thank you to the publisher for the gifted advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
Please do not hesitate to comment below if you liked my review or have any comments about this book 😊