2014 EVENTS:
Holly Bourne, Non Pratt and James Dawson - 30th October
Becca Fitzpatrick - 15th November

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Sister Assassin - Kiersten White

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

GENRE: Contemporary/Supernatural
PAGES: 302
PUBLISHER: HarperCollins
FORMAT: Paperback
BUY IT: Waterstones
RATING: 5 Stars


She never chose her deadly gift but now she's forced to use it. How far would you go to protect the only family you have left? Annie is beset by fleeting strange visions and a guilty conscience. Blind and orphaned, she struggles to care for her feisty younger sister Fia, but things look up when both sisters are offered a place at Kessler School for Exceptional Girls. Born with flawless intuition, Fia immediately knows that something's wrong, but bites her tongue...until it's too late. For Fia is the perfect weapon to carry out criminal plans and there are those at Kessler who will do anything to ensure her co-operation. With Annie trapped in Kessler's sinister clutches, instincts keep Fia from killing an innocent guy and everything unravels. Is manipulative James the key to the sisters' freedom or an even darker prison? And how can Fia atone for the blood on her hands?


Sister Assassin follows Fia, a special girl who's unfaltering instincts make her a dangerous weapon, and Annie, her blind sister who has visions of the future. They're both virtually imprisoned in a school, their special abilities being manipulated by the Foundation that set up the school on the pretense of helping girls with their talents. Their are other types of special abilities in their world, such as Feelers, who can feel the emotions of anyone around, but they only affect women. Fia is used as an assassin, killing enemies of the Foundation, and on the last mission she decides the unthinkable - she is not going to kill her target. The problem is that the Foundation are using Annie as leverage over Fia and she knows that by not killing the boy she is risking Annie's life. However, in saving him she may have given herself the opportunity to escape from people who are holding her, but it will come with sacrifices.

I loved Sister Assassin. Simple as that. It has stuck in my head ever since I read it and I couldn't tear myself away. The writing is perfect, bittersweet and beautiful; it's simply poetic. Fia's perfect instincts mean that her imposed occupation as assassin forces her to go against every feeling she has and then leaves her to deal with the devastating emotional consequences. She is constantly heart broken. Beaten down by everyone in her life she lives for the soul purpose of supporting her blind sister, whom the Foundation have promised to work on ways to give her back her sight.

The narrative shifts between Annie and Fia, and shows just how hard it is when your life is tangled up in someone elses. There are flashbacks, fleshing out their life at the school showing just how trapped they are. Fia cannot trust anyone - everyone uses her for their own end and yet she is one of the most interesting characters that I have ever read. I love how feisty she is and was absolutely heartbroken every time I thought she and James were finally making headway, only for her to be let down. There's so much about bodily and mental damage that it was hard to read in places. But I was completely swept away in her story, and even though it is almost as much about Annie as it is Fia, I couldn't help but follow Fia. She is so self sacrificing and every time I think she will give in, she doesn't. She finds hope and fights on.

I hope this is just the beginning of something big, because it deserves to be. I know there is so much more to come, although just as I couldn't predict the events in this book, I have no idea where the rest of the series is going to go. There were times I found myself holding my breath and reading bits over and over just because the writing was so simple but so, so perfect. I honestly loved it that much that I feel like my reading has peaked ridiculously early this year. It's very dark, and not suitable for the younger readers but I think I will be a great crossover title.

- Bex.

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