Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Pale Assassin by Patricia Elliott

Set during the French Revolution, this novel about a teen aristocrat who must question the justice of her own wealth while facing the cataclysmic divisions of her society is sure to captivate readers as secrets come out, sympathies shift, and every choice can change--or end--life.


Genre: historical

Rating: 4.5/5

 Keeping more in the spirit of The Scarlet Pimpernel than anything else I've ever read, The Pale Assassin sets itself up as the start of a series and doesn't slow down for air. Eugenie is the spoiled daughter of a disgraced aristocrat and finds herself and her brother caught in the middle of the French Revolution. With her brother trying to rescue the king and her nefarious, dangerous fiancee after her, she is desperate to hide in and finally leave France. Realizing that the revolution really has solved nothing, this novel does a pretty fair job of offering up the motivations of both sides, acknowledging that the idea for revolution was not the problem, just the taking of it to the extreme. 

Eugenie was spoiled but functional. The only real problem I had was that her romance at the end sort of came out of nowhere. Thankfully it's not dwelt on, but she goes from hating the boy to suddenly having feelings for him within a chapter. Her brother's story line is unresolved, which makes it clear this is to be a series as well as her main nemesis never being caught. This is the rare book where neither the male of female lead is all that equipped to deal with what they are thrown in to and I appreciate the fact that Julian was just as much out of his depth as Eugenie even if he was the "smart" one of the two. In all this was a surprisingly good adventure novel with a good deal of mystery and an excellent set up for a series.

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