This series has to be, hands down, one of my favorite series of all time. I love everything about it. Especially the message that compassion can conquer anything.
What it’s All About:
The Blackthorn and Grim Series by Juliet Marillier starts out with the main characters: Blackthorn and Grim, imprisoned by a local lord. Blackthorn is offered freedom by a mysterious individual but if she accepts she has to go back to what she was before, a healer. Something she is unsure she can do. She then makes her way to a remote and isolated dwelling. While she doesn’t expect (or want) any help, she gets it in the form of Grim. When they reach the village they quickly find that not everything is as it seems.
Each novel in this trilogy has the pair solving some sort of mystery and while they solve it gradually more of their backgrounds and personalities are revealed.
Each novel in the series is set up with 3 viewpoints with an occasional 4th perspective thrown in here and there. Two of the viewpoints always belong to Blackthorn and Grim, our heroes. The third perspective typically belongs to a character who is caught up in the mystery that Blackthorn and Grim have to solve. I really enjoyed this setup. The author is clearly able to distinguish each voice not by the name of the chapter but by the individual voice created for each character. The writing style for Blackthorn is completely distinct from Grim’s and their voices are distinct from the other characters chapters we read. Each voice fits each character perfectly and it provides a wonderful reading experience. Overall, the prose in these novels is spectacular, so lyrical and fits the story to a T.
The themes in this series are truly what makes this series so special. Especially, the theme of redemption. When we meet these characters they believe they are irredeemable, but throughout the series, they are gradually proven wrong. They each see each other in a positive light and, through the other, they begin to see themselves the same way. This relationship between the characters is another wonderful part of this series. The author does a fantastic job of creating characters that aren’t perfect but that are beautiful characters you root for. The characters make this series quite an emotional one, especially when we learn about their pasts. (When I read about Grim’s past I still cry)
I love this series and the magical setting Juliet Marillier creates in all of her novels. The setting where the characters live is a described beautifully and magically as well as the places the characters visit. The author is truly gifted at creating a beautiful and layered setting.
But as I said earlier my favorite aspect of this novel was the voices that the author gives each character how it captures the essence of the character when we hear their thoughts and how it made me more emotionally invested in their story. This series really is something special and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a wonderful story.
Books in the Series: