The Impossible Contract (The Chronicles of Ghadid #2) by K.A. Doore
Published: Tor Books (November 12th 2019)
Genre: adult; fantasy
Rep: poc cast, lesbian mc, sapphic li
TW: death, blood, violence, eye gore, body horror
Rating: 3.5/5 🍑
ARC provided by the publisher.
While The Perfect Assassin was all about Amastan and the moral dilemma of being an assassin, The Impossible Contract gives us a totally different kind of hero(ine). Thana takes pride in her profession and more than anything, wants to be remembered for her work. It’s so refreshing to read in a world where we’re used to only male characters being allowed to have an ego this size. (Also in her case it’s justified…)
We’re introduced to more of the world we already came to love, this time around learning about other aspects of it. In fact, it can almost feel less like coming to familiar land & more like discovering a whole new one, only with a few rituals we recognise. The change in perspective does wonders for the worldbuilding (not that it was bad before, the opposite really, but that it allows for further exploration).
That change also brings Thana to the spotlight and she’s a great main character. While Amastan questioned his every step and thought about all possible consequences of each, Thana just does. No fear, no doubt in her, only the burning need to fulfil her plans. Especially when someone she holds dear is in danger.
And that brings me to the romance part of the book and it’s probably not a surprise to anyone, if I say it was my favourite one. Thana’s lesbianism was the more relatable thing I have ever read and the whole love plot line was done in such a beautiful, slow way!
All in all, The Impossible Contract is a fast-paced fantasy adventure in a cool setting, with a group of very endearing characters to lead the reader through all the ups and downs. If you enjoyed the first installment, you definitely want to discover more of the world thanks to this one.
Thana has a huge reputation to live up to as daughter of the Serpent, who rules over Ghadid’s secret clan of assassins. Opportunity to prove herself arrives when Thana accepts her first contract on Heru, a dangerous foreign diplomat with the ability to bind a person’s soul under his control.
She may be in over her head, especially when Heru is targeted by a rival sorcerer who sends hordes of the undead to attack them both. When Heru flees, Thana has no choice than to pursue him across the sands to the Empire that intends to capture Ghadid inside its iron grip.
A stranger in a strange city, Thana’s only ally is Mo, a healer who may be too noble for her own good. Meanwhile, otherworldly and political dangers lurk around every corner, and even more sinister plans are uncovered which could lead to worldwide devastation. Can Thana rise to the challenge—even if it means facing off against an ancient evil?
Do you often read adult lit? Or are you more of a YA fan?
What makes a fantasy book good for you?