[Book Review] The Perfect Assassin, K.A. Doore

K.A. Doore’s debut novel is an intriguing start to a new series with descriptive world building and emotionally complex characters. In a society where every drop of water means the difference between life and death, Doore does an excellent job creating a story equally riveting around everything from water-wasting to murder. She builds an entire city above the sand and steeps the reader in a rich, complex culture with unique beliefs and practices without weighing down the story.

Amastan is part of a family of assassins sanctioned to kill for the greater good, but after he finally graduates from his training he learns their services have been banned. But when dead bodies start turning up, and their janni (destructive spirits) are set loose to terrorize the city, Amastan is tasked with finding the killer.

The plot unfolds expertly, a mystery who-done-it, delving into family secrets and cultural morals while at the same time building subtle and sensitive relationships that feel authentic and interesting.

*K.A. Doore is a fellow Debut Novelist, and I had the great pleasure of reading an Advanced Reader Copy. I’m providing my own opinion about the book without compensation.


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A novice assassin is on the hunt for someone killing their own in K. A. Doore’s The Perfect Assassin, a breakout high fantasy beginning the Chronicles of Ghadid series.

Divine justice is written in blood.

Or so Amastan has been taught. As a new assassin in the Basbowen family, he’s already having second thoughts about taking a life. A scarcity of contracts ends up being just what he needs.

Until, unexpectedly, Amastan finds the body of a very important drum chief. Until, impossibly, Basbowen’s finest start showing up dead, with their murderous jaan running wild in the dusty streets of Ghadid. Until, inevitably, Amastan is ordered to solve these murders, before the family gets blamed.

Every life has its price, but when the tables are turned, Amastan must find this perfect assassin or be their next target.


The Perfect Assassin is a thrilling fantastical mystery that had me racing through the pages.” —S. A. Chakraborty, author of The City of Brass


“Full of rooftop fights, frightening magic, and nonstop excitement and mystery, I absolutely loved it from start to finish!” — Sarah Beth Durst



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