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The Outcast Blade (The Assassini #2)

3.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  389 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
As the Byzantine and German emperors plot war against each other, Venice's future rests in the hands of three unwilling individuals:

The newly knighted Sir Tycho. He defeated the Mamluk navy but he cannot make the woman he loves love him back. Tortured by secrets, afraid of the daylight, he sees no reason to save a city he hates.

The grieving Lady Giulietta. Virgin. Mother.
ebook, 432 pages
Published March 26th 2012 by Orbit (first published 2012)
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Jun 27, 2012 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This book is an indulgence for me. It's like having toasted muffins with butter and peanut butter and a big mug of tea at ten o'clock at night. It's really an adult version of Twilight and just as compelling for me to read as Twilight is for a 16 year old girl. The first two books of what will no doubt be at least the Assassini Trilogy are set in 15th century Venice with all the mystique and intrigue that the true historical period holds with Krieghund (werewolves) and the Fallen (vampires) thr
Dark Matter
Sep 20, 2012 Dark Matter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
A historical paranormal fantasy with Machiavellian politics, adventure, werewolves and romance, set mostly in Venice, Italy in about the 17th century or thereabouts (my history is rusty). I loved the first in this trilogy; setting werewolves in a historical setting gave them a freshness: urban fantasy with werewolves is getting a bit same old, same old. Grimwood created such a sense of place that Venice was almost a character in her own right, although I’ve been assured by friends who’ve been th ...more
Manda Scott
Jun 26, 2012 Manda Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I discovered this author, and this book, while on blog tour for Eagle of the Twelfth. The Outcast Blade was reviewed just above it on the Falcata Times blog... I liked the sound of it, ordered it on the spot (oh, the joys of Amazon) and read it on the way to London for the HWA dinner. Such is the power of internet marketing.

This is the back cover blurb:

As the Byzantine and German emperors plot war against each other, Venice's future rests in the hands of three unwilling people: The newly knight
Dec 18, 2015 Allan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, drama, action, history
Set in an alternate, 15th-century Venice beset on either side of the German and Byzantine empires and desired by both, this world is also one where Gothic fantasy and magic are woven into the Machiavellian plots and schemes and where vampires and werewolves roam. I have to say I enjoyed the first book and this one continues along the same vein and provides an enteratining read.

Picking up where The Fallen Blade left off, this story sees Tycho raised to knighthood for his actions and in favour at
Jan 07, 2014 Stephen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Continues Mr Grimwood's excellent melding of history and fantasy begun in The Fallen Blade. The historically accurate setting of Venice and Machiavellian intrigue ring true to the time and create a complex and satisfying foundation. The gothic fantasy and magic elements add a visceral appeal that is razor sharp. Character development is excellent. What drives each character is evident on the surface, yet all have secrets - some yet to be revealed - that keep the reader guessing. Tycho, Giulietta ...more
Deborah Otway
Found this book a little bit confusing. It didn't seem to have any direction at first, seemed to go back and forth and around in circles quite a bit. Tycho was in and out of jail and one minute was Sir Tycho, then wasn't and then seemed to be Sir again. I can't understand how Rosalyn became like Tycho because I can't remember her ever drinking his blood - Tycho drank hers. Guilietta was unbearable at the beginning of the book but I guess that was her character. The characters of Tycho and Marco ...more
Dec 08, 2014 Mohamed rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book was a great continuance of where the last book left off. I can't wait to read the third edition of the series. All I can say to Jon is that i have both thumbs up and I am a big fan of your books. To be honest i didn't even know about the Assassini books, and I haven't even read that many fiction books since the first too Harry Potter volumes. That's ofcourse until I stumbled across your Fallen Blade book. I have been hooked to this genre ever since. I know read books by authors such as; ...more
Oct 21, 2012 jD rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Outcast Blade is a reasonably clean wrap for a series called ‘The Assassini’. I am not going to lie, it’s far from perfect so don’t think the 5-star rating is a full-on rave.

Addition was always easier for me than subtraction, so I will start with everything Jon C Grimwood got right. The world-building blended with nearly ancient world geography and religion to form an environment that could be visualized, smelled, and maybe touched. It’s the part of the story that I felt Mr. Grimwood felt m
Sean the Bookonaut
Grimwood’s, The Outcast Blade is the second book(Act Two) in what I suspect will be The Assassini trilogy. It’s a tale that exposes the reader an entertaining mix of history and dark fantasy.

And yes it’s another series where I am starting in the middle.[1] But despite this and despite it being very much a book two,[2] I was swept up in the intrigue and action.

The Story
Venice, an independent state sits uneasily within the grasp of two empires. The Holy Roman Empire under the German Sigismund and
Oct 04, 2012 Émeraude rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mon-livre-ma-vie


Okay ... Grimwood has the ability to make me cream without words, to think ...
And when I thought that the romance never happen here comes Grimwood and dance in my face!


Oh My.God.
It just makes me completely crazy with this series, how many twists!
The second in the series was a really good Act II, well paced, carrying the plot forward, Developing the relationships further.
Adventure, romance, swashbuckling, intrigue - it's smart and beautifully written and just delightful.

Fantasy Literature
Jun 30, 2013 Fantasy Literature rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: marion
I have good news and bad news about The Outcast Blade, the second book in Jon Courtenay Grimwood’s ACTS OF THE ASSASSINI series.

The good news is that the book is as captivating as its predecessor, The Fallen Blade. It’s a heady brew of magic, military strategy, politics, mystery, betrayal and love. Grimwood’s descriptions of Venice are grounded rather than lyrical, creating a living city that is gritty and fantastical, beautiful and frightening, breathing in history and breathing out magic.

Aug 22, 2015 Crt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book,, set in Venice in the Middle Ages . A little bit of fantasy (magical creatures) and the intrigue of the various Empires all trying to acquire Venice for themselves. The main character is a werewolf I think, but generally human. I know that's not a great description, but he falls in love with the next in line to rule Vencie. Intrigue, assassins, some fighting, a bit of a love story, some mystery all rolled into one.
Mar 19, 2014 Asdf rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Far from a werewolf vampire romance, this book in part closely follows Shakespeare's Othello plus a dash of Romeo and Juliet and some hamlet. The Othello theme is most obvious in this book (even the names are similar - Atilo, Desdaio and Iaco, with Amelia as one of the minor players). A lot more going on than may first appear.
Jan 05, 2013 Leah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I said most of what I wanted to say about this book in my update post a few days ago, but I'll go ahead and post a short final review. Ultimately, I did end up enjoying the book, but I have to agree with the reviewer who said that the second half is easier to read than the first. I couldn't tell you exactly where the writing style stopped grating on me, but it did happen at some point or another.

Probably close to Alta Mofacon. That sounds about right.

As stated before, I really want to li
Janice Bonczek
Wow, I loved this book. I couldn't put it down.
It actually felt like this could've been the final book in this story, although I know there is at least one more, The Exiled Blade. But the end wrapped everything up really nice.

Great visualizations from the author's descriptions, loved the plot line, great twist at the end that I was totally not expecting. And we learn more about Tycho's condition (/is/ he really a vampire?)

So just like the first book in this trilogy, there was lots of court intri
I remember being kinda lukewarm about the first book in this series, but this one sucked me in, even though it's Oh My Gods another vampire/werewolf book. The medieval setting is a nice twist, as are the way the tropes play out. Of course, the teenagers in love!!! gets a bit old, but, well, that's pretty much how teenagers are, ayup. (At least this vampire has the excuse of only remembering being as old as he appears...unlike certain other vampires who date teenagers I could mention. (Yup, still ...more
Ken Richards
Jan 17, 2016 Ken Richards rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The 2nd Act of the 'Assassini' sees Tycho raised up as a knight, as just as swiftly cast down, as Grimwood's alternate Venice is coverted by both the German and Byzantine empires.
Oct 14, 2012 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-read-2012
An excellent follow on from the Fallen Blade. Top quality fantasy that is full of subtlety and intrigue.

It concerns the recently widowed Lady Giulietta, who has the German and Byzantine empires wanting their preferred suitors to marry her and control Venice. The fly in the ointment is Tycho, a lethal assassin, but afraid of the day, who detests the city, but starts to love Lady Giulietta with a blind passion.

The climax of the book is a battle between the German and Byzantine empires with Tycho m
As the second in a series of three, I like this story in spite of the author's penchant to use periods instead of commas. Tales of 14th century Venice, with vampires and were-wolfs thrown in, are always interesting though the historical timelines are jumbled and bear only slight resemblance to actuality; I suppose that is a petty criticism of a book featuring mythical creatures. The second half of the book reads much easier; maybe the editor slept through the first half. If you can get through t ...more
Jun 19, 2012 Ruth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spec-fic
C2012: FWFTB: Venice, daylight, alliance, island, killing.This is Act Two of The Assassini so it had to be read. I enjoyed this book far better than the first instalment and things and actions started to blend and meld into something really exciting. A very different Venice and alternative history. I found it to have been well thought out. I think I may have found a typo on P51.FCN: Sir Tycho (“He looks like a Moorish merchant’s bumboy”), Lady Giulietta, Dr Crow, Atilo il Mauros, Duchess Alexa. ...more
Pat Stearman
Jul 01, 2015 Pat Stearman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyable series set in Venice with werewolves and vampires... :)
The continuing saga of Tycho, the mysterious 'fallen angel'. Or is he a demon. Well, he's a vampire although this is not mentioned in the books and you have to deduce it for yourself from the clues given. More intrigue and murder in 15th century Venice. I'm sure the Millioni are based on the Borgias because of their dastardly deeds. Enjoyable adventure.
Rachael Gaffney
Jul 22, 2012 Rachael Gaffney rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This second book in the Assissini Trilogy was worlds better than the first. Grimwood seems to have abandoned the pretentious and stilted sentence formations he employed in the first book. As a result, the text flows and more time can be spent on enjoying the story than trying to decipher the meaning of each sentence.
Oct 25, 2012 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The second book definitely improved on the first - eagerly awaiting the final of the series.

The action is firmly set in Venice and the intrigue and characters of the Venice court made for an engrossing read. The main characters had interesting dilemmas and the scheming Duchess is wicked!
Nov 25, 2012 Rosemary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A magnificent juggling act of alternative history set on the high wire of Shakespearean tragedy. Difficult to describe, but if you like richly textured texts as well as vampires, werewolves, wild magic, and Venice, then try this series.
Jessica Rice
Oct 11, 2013 Jessica Rice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyed it, better than the first in that I now understood how the author builds his scenes. Personally I perfer a little for description, but still a fantastic story and I'm looking forward to the next one.
Clifford Terry
Sep 19, 2013 Clifford Terry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
History and fantasy is one of my favourite combinations. With great characters and intricate plots involving royalty and empires this is a good way to fill the time waiting for the next 'A Song of Ice and Fire' book.
Aug 19, 2013 Ursula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It started a bit slow and was not sure the direction of the story until about a 1/4 of the way in. Then it picked up and I could not stop reading, very good and kept me wanting to know more.
Aug 07, 2012 Justina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved reading every bit of this book; it's just my thing. Adventure, romance, swashbuckling, intrigue - it's smart and beautifully written and just delightful.
Alec Doughty
Jun 07, 2012 Alec Doughty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. Running through Venice in a nice mashup of historical and fantasy themes was fun and reminded me of my 3 days in Venice in 2006. A real page turner.
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'Tough, sexy and brutal, but leavened with sharp humour... Grimwood is a name to watch.' The Times

Jon Courtenay Grimwood was born in Malta and christened in the upturned bell of a ship. He grew up in the Far East, Britain and Scandinavia. Apart from novels he writes for magazines and newspapers. He travels extensively and undertakes a certain amount of consulting. Until recently he wrote a monthly
More about Jon Courtenay Grimwood...

Other Books in the Series

The Assassini (3 books)
  • The Fallen Blade (The Assassini, #1)
  • The Exiled Blade (The Assassini, #3)

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