This Vicious Grace delves into an Italian influence to bring to life a slow-burn fantasy romance leaving readers hooked.
This Vicious Grace follows Alessa, the latest Finestra gifted with the power of the gods to magnify her partners. However, her ability takes too much, her mind eager for touch and companionship.
Thiede did a great job building the world, but the initial take of the story is slow. Connecting to the characters at the beginning is difficult because the story’s pacing is so slow. Also, there is a lot of world-building right at the beginning taking the attention from the characters. It is a hard story to get into because of that.
Yes, the world-building, history, and mythology are all fascinating. However, the reader does not need all that information early on. Instead, this information can be trickled throughout the story so the reader can be drawn in instead of overwhelmed.
Nevertheless, once the reader gets past that, the story begins to pick up the pace, and the tension, direction, and slow-burning romance allow the reader to be more engaged with the story.
Alessa and Dante follow the trope of enemies-to-lovers. As cliché as it sounds, it works here because of their dynamic. It is a little reminiscent of The Bodyguard, but the trope works by delving into the character’s internal struggles.
Alessa is forbidden to touch anyone except her partner. Her magic is supposed to amplify that of her partners. Still, she aches for that companionship, for touch so internally that her power takes too much magic too quickly, resulting in the death of her partner.
She was taken from her family at a young age. She was stripped of her identity, her family, and isolated to train in ways of combat and use her power. It has left her with an ache in her heart that gives her a measure of sympathy.
Her connection with Dante forms through this need for connection. Haunted by his past and secrets, these two characters form a friendship that blossoms into a compelling romance. This is coming from someone who doesn’t much care for romance. Yet, it works, creating a solid dynamic and allowing the characters to grow as the plot thickens.
Overall, This Vicious Grace may start slow, but the tension and storytelling build upon each other to give readers a thrilling fantasy debut.
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|Pub Date: June 28, 2022||Page Count: 448pp||Age Range: 13 & Over|
|ISBN: 978-1-2507-9405-5||Publisher: Wednesday Books||List Price: $18.99|