Review: ‘Death Sworn’ by Leah Cypess

I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: ‘Death Sworn’ by Leah CypessDeath Sworn by Leah Cypess
Series: Death Sworn #1
Published by Greenwillow Books on March 4th, 2014
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Love & Romance, Mystery, Young Adult
Pages: 344
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
When Ileni lost her magic, she lost everything: her place in society, her purpose in life, and the man she had expected to spend her life with. So when the Elders sent her to be magic tutor to a secret sect of assassins, she went willingly, even though the last two tutors had died under mysterious circumstances.

But beneath the assassins’ caves, Ileni will discover a new place and a new purpose… and a new and dangerous love. She will struggle to keep her lost magic a secret while teaching it to her deadly students, and to find out what happened to the two tutors who preceded her. But what she discovers will change not only her future, but the future of her people, the assassins… and possibly the entire world.

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I picked this one up because it screamed fantasy. Even that awesomely sounding title had my interest piqued. But what went down was something else. For me, it ended up being too much a romance and not enough of adventure, fantasy where our main characters are at war with another kingdom. That was what I was expecting. I felt like it dragged on and on and on..And I wanted to know why her powers were fading, it bothered me sooo much.

A good world building read that was wholly interesting, but there was one big problem for me. I still didn’t believe the Empire was such a threat. We were told it was and it wasn’t even shown. This huge threat was absent. I was thinking there was going to be this huge war and Ileni and Sorin would fight to the death, but there wasn’t. I’m not sure if this was made to be part of a trilogy or series, but I was rather disappointed.

A good start to a magical fantasy read, but for me, I didn’t enjoy the romance being a main focus. I recommend skipping this one if you’re looking for more of an adventure!


Death doesn’t mean to us what it does to you.
How can you know what your life is worth if you don’t know what you would trade it for?
She had been so loved, once. She hadn’t even realized how lucky she was, to be the center of someone’s world, to have someone who would always be there.
Quoting other people is fine, but only if you actually have the ability to think on your own.
Just because someone was being victimized did not, necessarily, make him likeable.
Undirected anger hurts no one but you. Anger can be a powerful tool, but only if you treat it like one.
It’s nice to be a useful tool instead of a despised one.

reading progress






  1. Carina Olsen

    February 10, 2016 at 3:44 PM

    Aw 🙁 I’m so sorry you didn’t like this book much Giselle. Your review is gorgeous, though. <3 I actually loved this book a lot when I read it. I even won a signed ARC of book two, but have yet to read it 🙁 Romance gets turned into a triangle. UGH. And the romance was why I loved this first book, lol 😀 I'm sorry you didn't love it, though :\ Hugs. Thank you for sharing 🙂
    Carina Olsen recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday #226My Profile

    • giselle

      February 11, 2016 at 9:12 PM

      Yeah, it’s okay though! At least I checked it out

  2. Sierra Abrams

    February 8, 2016 at 3:01 PM

    Ach, this book presented trouble for me as well. It was so…forgettable? I know that’s the most terrible thing to say about a book (I’d rather say I despised something because at least that means it was memorable! haha) but it’s true. It just kind of….faded. I enjoyed the first half but then I realized she wasn’t really going to explain things that needed explaining, and a lot of the development felt choppy. Such a bummer, as the premise/setting had SO much promise.

    Thanks for the honest review <3
    Sierra Abrams recently posted…Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarryMy Profile

    • giselle

      February 11, 2016 at 9:46 PM

      Yes! Exactly! You hit it on the head, forgettable! It just fell and I didn’t even care about the romance. Why does it have to be about romance?! It could be about everything together instead

  3. Andrea

    February 8, 2016 at 10:27 AM

    I had a lot of trouble getting through this one as well… it didn’t give me exactly what I was expecting, the action and fantasy element really fell by the wayside. I’m reading the second one just to see how the series goes, and I can say it’s a bit better but it still feels off and like it’s missing that true fantasy feel to it.
    Andrea recently posted…Review: The Love that Split the World by Emily HenryMy Profile

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