The Boneless Mercies

The Boneless Mercies

A dark standalone YA fantasy about a band of mercenary girls in search of female glory.Frey, Ovie, Juniper, and Runa are the Boneless Mercies—girls hired to kill quickly, quietly, and mercifully. But Frey is weary of the death trade and, having been raised on the heroic sagas of her people, dreams of a bigger life. When she hears of an unstoppable monster ravaging a nearby...

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Title:The Boneless Mercies
Author:April Genevieve Tucholke
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Boneless Mercies Reviews

  • Melissa

    THE BONELESS MERCIES is a wonder, infused with the spare and melancholy magic of a heraldic ballad. It's the story of an all-women pack of paid mercy killers winding through a Norse-influenced fantasy world on their way to slaying the marauding Blue Vee Beast, thus earning fame, glory, and enough money to leave their old lives behind.

    But more than that it's about the world Tucholke creates, which sings with glimpses of mythology and history and plant lore and dead kings and lost goddesses and lo

    THE BONELESS MERCIES is a wonder, infused with the spare and melancholy magic of a heraldic ballad. It's the story of an all-women pack of paid mercy killers winding through a Norse-influenced fantasy world on their way to slaying the marauding Blue Vee Beast, thus earning fame, glory, and enough money to leave their old lives behind.

    But more than that it's about the world Tucholke creates, which sings with glimpses of mythology and history and plant lore and dead kings and lost goddesses and long-ago battles and people passed out of memory. It feels lived in and deeply magical. I LOVED it.

  • Acqua

    4.5 stars

    and the third book I've read by April Genevieve Tucholke. I liked

    for its weirdness and had mixed feelings on

    , and this one might be my favorite one of the three.

    Mostly about friendships between women, but there are some relevant m/f ones too - the only thing that this book lacks is a romance, and I really di

    4.5 stars

    and the third book I've read by April Genevieve Tucholke. I liked

    for its weirdness and had mixed feelings on

    , and this one might be my favorite one of the three.

    Mostly about friendships between women, but there are some relevant m/f ones too - the only thing that this book lacks is a romance, and I really did not miss it.

    Even in YA books that are supposedly about friendships, the romance almost always ends up overshadowing the friendships. Because

    This is the only book I know that not only doesn't fall in the "this is

    friendship" trap, but reverses it. When the main character is asked whether she's in a relationship with a guy, she answers that they're friends. And the other person answers "so it's deeper, then" (or something like that) and it was so beautiful to see. It's also a

    . There's no romance, but the main character sleeps with a man she's not in a relationship with, and again, I almost never see this in YA fiction.

    is the story of four women looking for a future in a world in which they're forced to wander as outcasts. It's about striving for more while never belonging,

    They find it, and they go through it together.

    I don't remember the last time I saw that in a YA book. Maybe I never did, especially not in a book with a mostly-female cast, and it was so refreshing. I hadn't realized how used I was to passive main characters.

    As I now expect from April Genevieve Tucholke, this book was

    . It has the kind of writing that makes you feel the wind, the snow, the smell of saltwater; that makes you feel as if you're getting lost in the marshes too, as if you're wandering in the mist with the characters.

    Some described this book as slow-paced and incomplete, and I see why, but I don't think this story would have worked if it had been written like most YA fantasy books. It's creepy and bloody and dark, but it's mostly

    , and I think many didn't like that. But this is not a story about defeating a beast and falling in love in the process, this is a story about looking for your place in an unwelcoming, changing world, about the uncertainty of it all. The way it feels so distant and so close at the same time is exactly

    For something that felt very distant, it sure made me feel a lot of things. It's been a long while since a character death affected me this much, as I find most of them cop-outs. Also, the characters were great and I loved all of them:

    🐺

    , the narrator, a girl seeking glory in a world in which glory is a man's thing. I loved her a lot.

    🐺

    , a warrior girl with a mysterious past. Probably the least developed of the five, but still great.

    🐺

    , an archer with a very abrasive side. She went through a lot, she just wants to leave. An awesome character.

    🐺

    , Sea Witch, the youngest and most magical of the group. Deserves every good thing.

    🐺

    , the only guy in the group, a Soft Boy between warrior girls.

    I didn't think this book was perfect - I thought that

    - but it was everything I wanted

    to be earlier this year, and I'm glad I found a book inspired by Norse mythology about female warriors I actually liked.

    I did kind of want this book to be gayer. Listen,

    , but as there was no romance at all, I'm not even mad it just remained subtext. Also, at some point the main character says she wouldn't be mad if Trigve decided to spend the night with a healer girl because she'd do the same thing and... I know, I wouldn't recommend this as a queer book as it's a blink-or-miss thing, but

  • Susan Kennedy

    I would give this one 4 solid stars. It was well written and I enjoyed the story. I also enjoyed the character development.

    I wasn't sure going in what this one would be like, but I was pleasantly surprised by the story and the characters. It was different and a bit dark, which I found pleasurable. This was a story full of adventure and with girls as the main characters. They were brave and strong and together they were a family even though they were as different as night and day.

    I enjoyed gett

    I would give this one 4 solid stars. It was well written and I enjoyed the story. I also enjoyed the character development.

    I wasn't sure going in what this one would be like, but I was pleasantly surprised by the story and the characters. It was different and a bit dark, which I found pleasurable. This was a story full of adventure and with girls as the main characters. They were brave and strong and together they were a family even though they were as different as night and day.

    I enjoyed getting to know each character and their histories. I felt the character development was well done and I grew more attached to them as their stories unfolded. I loved that they were all so different yet molded together into an incredible family circle. The author was great at developing these characters while keeping the story moving at a steady pace. The story was full of adventure and it never left you bored or waiting for more. It was always moving.

    This was really well done.

  • TL

    Characters: 4 stars

    Writing: 3 to 2.5 stars

    Plot 3 stars

    ----

    What I loved:

    the atmosphere and the world the author built.

    The bond between the girls and Trigve.

    The Sea Witches home

    The mythology she creates, blending with some known ones.

    So-so's:

    I was interested enough to keep reading but at times I could feel my eyes glazing over and there were times I would look at the book and think

    .

    I did get bored and push myself through some of this... skim read some of it *shru

    Characters: 4 stars

    Writing: 3 to 2.5 stars

    Plot 3 stars

    ----

    What I loved:

    the atmosphere and the world the author built.

    The bond between the girls and Trigve.

    The Sea Witches home

    The mythology she creates, blending with some known ones.

    So-so's:

    I was interested enough to keep reading but at times I could feel my eyes glazing over and there were times I would look at the book and think

    .

    I did get bored and push myself through some of this... skim read some of it *shrugs*

    Overall, a well done book but underwhelming for me.

  • Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    It was okay enough!

    Mel 🖤🐺🐾

  • Cindy ✩☽ Savage Queen ♔

    Four female mercenaries kicking butt and slaying monsters? I am in!

  • C.G. Drews

    It's the kind of book that you soak in, really, because it's here to absolutely enthral you with this gorgeously wrought world and deliciously described food...all centred around 4 badass girls who do "mercy" killings for the sick and dying. And, oh, for vengeance sometimes too because men suck. And OH yeah also some witches and some monsters. \_(ツ)_/ Basically they are badass assassins who are also actually kind of sweet.

    (Also I've only read Wink Poppy Midnight

    It's the kind of book that you soak in, really, because it's here to absolutely enthral you with this gorgeously wrought world and deliciously described food...all centred around 4 badass girls who do "mercy" killings for the sick and dying. And, oh, for vengeance sometimes too because men suck. And OH yeah also some witches and some monsters. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Basically they are badass assassins who are also actually kind of sweet.

    (Also I've only read Wink Poppy Midnight by this author, which was magical realism, so I WAS a little surprised this was epic fantasy. But in a good way!)

    YAY VIKINGS. We also have witches and magic and jarls and snow...so much snow everywhere. You totally get absorbed by the setting and how harsh and yet beautiful it is.

    I confess, big casts scare me a little and this hit us straight away with a group of 5....plus they meet SO many people along the way. I didn't get confused

    She narrates and she's like the basic selfless Gryffindor. KILL ALL THE THINGS TO SAVE ALL THE PEOPLE. I admired her, but like...I didn't have my heart in my mouth at any point caring deeply for her? IDK.

    She is the feisty one who has bitten and will bite again, just you watch. She's a bit contrary and I kinda loved her.

    She was quiet. That's all of it right there.

    OK OUR ACTUAL GORGEOUS SOFT SWEET TREASURE. She's a sea witch and actually the sweetest little thing. (Also my niece's name is Juniper?! SO I was doomed to love this sone.) She's the youngest and just ajkfldsa Juniper!!

    He's the sole boy in the group, so not a mercy killer, but they kind of just picked him up like a cute lost puppy and he follows them everywhere. He seemed to have a thing for Frey??? And also he is so so soft. I love books with soft boys.

    I have to admit

    . It...isn't? But I felt led on to believe on thing, but eh, it sort of flopped in a different fishy direction. (Also lowkey disappointed there was no sapphic rep here. I

    was hoping for that.)

    Which is a style! I do appreciate it! It has this vast vast world and it is constantly throwing words at you, types of people, references different gods and countries and witches and wars and stories. And woahhhh mate. 0_0 I wish it had a map wow do I. I felt a bit lost with how BIG it was, but at the same time it felt so realistic. This is a full world, not just a few spatterings of a town and one or two people. (Also LOVED the Quicks! They felt like Robin Hood sort of people!)

    Like it is literally a delicious feast for the eyes with the writing! It's so ethereal! I didn't really connect to the characters or felt I got to know them enough, is the only downside. AND THAT COVER THO. HOW GORGEOUS.

  • Chelsea Humphrey

    This one just wasn't for me. :(

  • Em (RunawayWithDreamthieves)

    ”? EXCUSE ME IT IS MY GOD GIVEN BISEXUAL RIGHT TO HAVE THIS BOOK RIGHT THIS SECOND

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