Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff

Posted On 18 September 2017

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Godsgrave – what an absolute blast of a book, packed with action, drenched in blood, sweat and tears and full of surprises.  Yes, I thoroughly enjoyed this, it’s a great second instalment in series with not a whiff of ‘middle book syndrome’ to be found.

At the start of the story we have a dual timeline that follows Mia working as an assassin, and captured by slavers and on her way to training to become a gladiator.  I do enjoy dual timelines and I think this one eventually comes to a head in a most satisfactory way.  I won’t spoil the enjoyment of discovery for you but suffice to say that Mia is still hell bent on revenge against the two men responsible for the death of her parents.

I’m not going to really elaborate on the plot too much but discuss other things that I really enjoyed about this instalment.

Firstly, I must address the footnotes.  I made no secret of the fact that they weren’t my favourite aspect of Nevernight – however that was very much due to the formatting and that particular niggle has been resolved wonderfully here.  Each time a footnote appears the text is hidden, clicking on the footnote displays the content.  I really liked this as you don’t lose your place in the book.  Just a small thing but it did make me happy I can’t deny it.

Secondly, this story firmly takes us to an alternate Rome resplendent with Gladiatorial games and more to the point the training and competition that act as a fore runner to the main event.  I loved the training school, the trials and tribulations and the friendships that sprung up – in spite of Mia’s protestations to the contrary and determination to remain aloof.

Thirdly, the action, the drama, the pace.  All amazing.  You can barely put this book down because it’s constantly cranking up the level and forcing you to stay amongst the pages.  Put simply it’s an exciting and exhilarating book to read.

Finally, the characters.  Kristoff certainly made me care about them and I love that in a book, that choked up feeling when you’re so worried that something bad is going to happen to your favourite characters.  This book definitely puts you through the wringer in that respect.  And, I loved the darkin characters – they bring a wonderful argumentative banter to the pages and the whole darkin element is quite fascinating to read about and I’m pleased to say is developed further here.

Criticisms.  Well, nothing major to be honest.  I think the writing is different in this book, the pacing certainly is and I think the author has tried to cull his tendency towards ‘purple prose’ – frankly, I like the descriptiveness and, okay, flowery writing, so, whilst I wasn’t disappointed to see that this book was a bit more to the point, I would equally have been happy with the more ‘wordy’ approach of Nevernight.

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this.  It was highly entertaining, gripping and had twists and turns that I didn’t see coming plus it packs a great emotional punch.

Highly recommended – although I think you must read Nevernight first.  I don’t think this would be as good without the background of the first.

I received a copy through Netgalley courtesy of the publisher for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.


18 Responses to “Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff”

  1. Tammy

    Yes! I loved this too. I definitely noticed a difference in the writing style, I guess he’s been paying attention to all those reviewers:-) I don’t mind the “purple” prose either, I just think of it as his style. Great review!

    • @lynnsbooks

      I really enjoyed this one – glad that the footnote style changed as it made it a lot easier to deal with but I agree – I didn’t mind the more detailed writing.
      Lynn 😀

  2. Drew @ The Tattooed Book Geek

    Fantastic review for a fantastic book. Yeah, totally agree, some sequels you can pick up without reading the first book but I think you definitely needed to have read Nevernight before Godsgrave.

    He definitely changed his writing style, I’d noticed that. It was far more to the point than in Nevernight. If it had been written the same way it’d have been a couple of hundred pages longer!😂 I liked the writing in Nevernight, a lot of reviewers didn’t but I’m like you, happy with either style.

    • @lynnsbooks

      Yeah, I liked both styles to be honest but I was relieved that the footnotes had been changed as they were a nightmare to read by e-book.
      Great book thought.
      Lynn 😀

  3. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    I loved the second part of this, once we dispensed with the dual timelines – after a while I admit I was getting a bit confused as to whether I was reading the past or present! I really enjoyed the gladiator action in the latter parts of the book though. That was some crazy good fun! I can’t wait for the conclusion!

    • @lynnsbooks

      I loved the gladiator elements of this book – so much fun to read (probably not so much fun to take part eh!)
      Lynn 😀

  4. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    If the reviews for the first book of this series were somewhat mixed, your review indicates that the second volume seems to have found a much firmer pace, and this made me pay attention. I will probably wait for the series to be completed and might for once forsake my habitual e-reading to buy this one in paper form… 🙂
    Thanks for sharing!

    • @lynnsbooks

      This instalment definitely sorted out the footnote issues which were definitely problematic in book 1. The style of writing was also changed although tbh I didn’t mind the style in the first book although it didn’t work for everyone.
      Lynn 😀

  5. Carmen

    I’m glad that you enjoyed this book so much. Was it better than Nevernight?

    • @lynnsbooks

      I liked Nevernight but I think probably on balance this is the better book of the two.
      Lynn 😀

  6. Danya @ Fine Print

    It sounds like this was a really great follow-up to Nevernight, with just as much action and suspense! The fact that the formatting on the footnotes is much better this go round actually makes me more likely to read Godsgrave, hahaha. 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      Yes, the reformatting of the footnotes was very helpful. And I loved this instalment.
      Lynn 😀

  7. sjhigbee

    This is one I need to get hold of, given that I really enjoyed Nevernight. Thank you for a cracking review, Lynn:)

  8. ‘…and they all lived happily ever after.’ | Books and travelling with Lynn

    […] Nevernight Chronicles by Jay Kristoff – Nevernight and Godsgrave were awesome – Darkdawn is due around September 2019.  I’m eager to pick it […]

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