Finally I have read Grimalkin’s book! While I enjoyed reading it, I think it is at times a weak link in an otherwise fantastic series.
Grimalkin thus far has been one of my favorite characters, so I had pretty high expectations for this book. She is the do-er who comes in, scissors and blades flying, a tornado of swift death. Neither does morality slow her down, because she is a malevolent witch. Through the power of her will and positive thinking, she transforms herself into the best witch assassin. She sees someone needs saving and saves them, sees someone needs killing and kills them. It makes her a fearsome enemy, but a precious ally for Tom.
I Am Grimalkin watered down the fierce Grimalkin I had come to know and love (and fear a tiny bit). Instead of doing things, she is running for a good portion of the book. I think that really slows down the start of the book.
We also got to see her apprentice, Thorne, which was kind of cool in the beginning until Thorne kept having to save Grimalkin. Thorne was Grimalkin’s crutch when she was injured, and as soon as Grimalkin no longer needed her the crutch was cast away.
Grimalkin shows her softer side in this book a lot. I did not like seeing this. Grimalkin is the relentless, stone cold death dealer. Yet she sobs over the body of her apprentice. I thought the reason she is the best is because the death of her child made her hard and ruthless, not flubbery when someone she got close to died. Sad, I would believe, but not sobbing over the body.
But the end of the story redeemed itself. Delaney concludes the story by bringing Alice into play again and forcing her to use her magic. Grimalkin is a tiny bit scared and awed by Alice at this point, which makes my insides dance happily. Alice is so AWESOME! But then because Grimalkin likes working alone, she drugs Alice and goes off to kill their enemy herself. Holy hot tamales. Get it! Fist pump moment right there.
I am a huge fan of how Delaney crafted Grimalkin’s final battle. She hunts down all of the people who killed Thorne, but we get it in more of a prose poem form. Delaney plays with form to make the third death really impact the reader. He writes the first two deaths: killed them this way, cut off their thumb bones. Then for the third death he switches it around: cut off his thumb bones, killed him this way. It was the perfect, potent punch to accompany the question Grimalkin would never answer her apprentice: “Have you ever cut off the thumb bones while an enemy is still alive?” Best chapter in the book, in my opinion. Absolutely flawless.
So I have chosen to give this book a four out of five because of the rather slow pacing in the beginning of the book. I got a few suggestions to read yesterday! The Harry Dresden Files as well as the Jack Reacher series. So I am heading to the library tomorrow to check those out for reading! But I think I will be reading The Scorch Trials first. Remember to suggest any books for me to read and review in the comments and let me know what you thought of I Am Grimalkin!