Grey Sister (Book of the Ancestor #2) by Mark Lawrence
Published: April 3rd 2018 by Ace Books
Genre: epic fantasy (YA)
Rating: 5/5 stars
I won’t provide a synopsis, as this is the second book in the trilogy and I want to keep this review spoiler free. You can find the premise of the book by clicking on the title above, which will take you to the Goodreads page.
I wrote a review on Red Sister, the first book in the series, earlier this year which you can find here.
I was hesitant going into this book. Why? Because I absolutely adored the first book in the series, Red Sister. It’s one of my favorite reads of the year so far, and I didn’t want to be let down by the sequel. While I was at YALC however, I met Jane (who runs a beautiful bookstagram account) who told me she loved the sequel even more than the first book. So I finally picked it up during the NEWTs readathon in August. I ended up loving it, possibly even more than I loved the first book. Jane, you were right.
I’m keeping my review spoiler free, even for those who haven’t read the first book, so I’m very limited in what I can say here. First of all, I am so grateful Mark Lawrence included a the story so far section at the start of this book. Even though it had been only about 6 months since I’d read Red Sister, I’d forgotten some details already. Why doesn’t every series include this? We do it with TV shows every week, but are somehow expected to remember the intricate details of a book for a year?
The story starts roughly three years after the ending of Red Sister, so there is quite a large time jump. At first, I was a tad confused because of a certain character. For the life of me, I couldn’t remember who this was supposed to be. Then I read in the story so far section that it was a new character, and that we were supposed to be confused at the start. After that, I flew through the book.
While I feel like this book largely served the purpose of creating tension for the big event/fight/battle in the third book, I also never found myself bored. I still felt like this book was fast-paced and interesting, and I liked seeing the story and schemes come together.
The characters are a large part of why I love this book. I truly believe that Grey Sister gave us more time with each of the characters, both to explore them and their relationships with each other more. I love watching these girls grow up, and seeing their friendships develop.
I’m very grateful that we learned far more about Sister Kettle in this book. She’s a lot more prominent in Grey Sister, and she is quickly becoming one of my favorite characters. Sister Kettle is a Grey Sister, which means a Sister of Discretion (spy, poisoner, you name it). I also love her relationship with Sister Apple!
Obviously, I have to talk about Nona here. In the first book, Nona was very impulsive and quick to anger. Thanks to the new character introduced, she still is. But she has been working on her temper for 3 years now. I do think that she would be in far less shit if she stopped to think before taking action more, but then where would the story be? All in all, I like her growth throughout the story, especially considering her age.
Onto another one of my favorite characters: Zole. She’s still shrouded in mystery, and we still don’t know much about the chosen one. She doesn’t speak often, has probably the best pokerface ever, and is a great fighter. There is one moment in this book where Zole shows up somewhere, and it left me screaming. I was so happy she called Nona her friend!
Abbess Glass. I’m intrigued by her. What game is she playing? What’s the end goal? How far ahead did she plan? I can’t wait for it all to unravel.
Joeli. I wish I could strangle you with my own bare hands.
It’s clear that I loved this book. I flew through it, wasn’t bored for a second, and fell even more in love with all of the characters. The only thing I can’t deal with is the ending. How can you make us wait for the next book, Mark Lawrence, when the entire trilogy was finished before the first one was even published? I’m definitely pre-ordering Holy Sister. If you haven’t started this series yet, what are you waiting for? It’s about assassin and spy nuns!