It has been a while since I got to the end of a book and was desperate for the next in the series. The Assassin's Curse is a wonderful teen fantasy novel that reminded me of the work of Tamora Pierce or Dianna Wynne Jones, and I can't wait for the sequel.
The story is about Ananna, daughter of high-ranking pirate parents, who is being set up with an arranged marriage to the son of some other pirates. Upon meeting her future husband, she realises he's a bit of a tosser and runs away. An assassin is sent after her, but when Ananna inadvertantly saves his life, he becomes cursed with having to protect her and the pair of them set off on a journey to free themselves.
Ananna is an original and likeable character, the book is written from her perspective, and using her language. She is fiesty and has a very interesting pirate-based skill set. The plot is a tad predictable, but it brings the characters through some wonderful settings: an exotic market, a pirate ship and a magical island. The inevitable romance is sweet, and the ending left me wanting more.
The only thing that annoyed me was the character of the assassin - Naji. He refuses to let Ananna in on any of his plans throughout the book, which, while initially is understandable, starts to get wearing. This didn't stop this book from being a cracking read, however, and something that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend to others.
Book: The Assassin's Curse
Author: Cassandra Rose Clarke
Publisher: Angry Robot