TTT: Why I Love Assassins

ttt

For more info on Top Ten Tuesday, click here.

Okay, proclaiming my love for assassins might not be a normal thing to say. In all honesty, they could as easily destroy my favorite fictional characters as easily as they can destroy my non-favorites. And they’d do it because that is what they’re created to do. But not gonna lie. Some of them tend to be rather awesomely written. And there’s no denying they’re badass. Slightly psychotic and deranged and every bit suffering issues of abuse, familial absence, and political and emotional discord, but honestly, that’s why I love them.

Ten Reasons I Love Assassins (in Fiction)

1. Their legendary skills are only outmatched by their legendary names. Celaena Sardothien. Gaelan Starfire. Viridiana Sovari. Kvothe the Kingkiller. Corvo Attano. Szeth-son-son-Vallano, Truthless of Shinovar. I mean. Those are awesome assassin-ish names. Nobody would take them seriously if one of them had decided to adopt the moniker of “Princess Sparkles” or “The Butterfly” (though, to be honest, I’d probably rock “The Butterfly” as my assassin name…just saying). I mean, if Leliana can rock “Nightingale,” I totally can rock “Butterfly.”

“My name is Ezio Auditore da Firenze and this is my favorite hood in Masyaf.”

2. Their sneaky, ninja reflexes. I mean, sometimes these assassins are Talents in and of themselves–and sometimes magic helps them blend into the shadows. But even without their brand of Skill, Grace, Talent, or Allomantic chicanery, there is still no denying the fact that they have trained for their roles. And often, not even the lack of superhuman strength or magic will be able to stop them from ending their deaders.

I just…what witchcraft is this?!

3. Their constant push to learn new things. An assassin who cannot learn from past mistakes is a dead assassin in my book. Whether this learning is a new fighting move, a more informative outlook on people and politics, or several new pages of herbal poisons, it’s a never-ending education. Heck, I would actually be more surprised if an assassin like Valek or Durzo wouldn’t be able to tell you the most obscure of poisons. It’s their damn business to know after all.

What? Corvo’s totally not hiding under a fireplace awaiting to see these two gentlemen (or gentleman) die from their poisoned drinks.

4. Their hardcore training regime. I swear, the best were trained from birth. Or, well, as close to birth as people can get them. For Fitz, that was around six or eight. For Arya, same deal (“A GIRL HAS NO NAME”). For Kylar and Celaena and definitely for Katsa, their time as children did not last very long, not when shit like stabbing and poisoning needed to get done.

And now even YOU can set yourself to this kind of assassin training!

5. They give almost zero fucks about the people they’re offing…until they do. Which pose moral problems when assassins have a conscience, but when they become the main characters of the story, they tend to possess some kind of code or creed. For the most part, though, they’re more concerned about getting things done. As quietly as possible.

6. Sometimes characters in a story just need to get dead. Having an assassin handy would really solve the problem. Alas, this is not always the case. It would be a nice notion, though.

7. They occasionally have cool assassin-ish sayings.

“Nothing is true, everything is permitted.”

And…

“I am Sa’kage lord of shadows. I claim the shadows that the Shadow may not.”

‘Nuff said.

8. They are often great planners, thinkers, and multitaskers. They memorize blueprints to get in and out of castles easily. They observe patterns and react upon them. When things go wrong, the best ones often adjust their already laid-out plans to work with what they have. And they do this all while playing a balancing game in front of the public.

9. Their arsenal. From the swords and daggers in their vaults to the poisons in their pockets, to even their hidden Shardblades. I’d kill for one of their weapons. I’d probably die in the process, but never mind.

I also would not mind having this lovely assassin’s outfit. She looks so terribly kickass in high boots and long, military coat.

10. They never cease to be interesting. Whether dead or alive, saving the world or sending it careening toward disaster, retired or at-work, betrayed or in love, evil or necessary, they often work with those elements. And the best often have a way of making their stories sing their names for as long as there are people populating the fantasy world.


I realize I actually haven’t read as many assassin-fantasy books as I thought I did. Any suggestions?

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15 thoughts on “TTT: Why I Love Assassins

  1. I don’t think I’ve ever read any assassin’s book, that’s so strange! They are pretty cool, though, so I totally get your list. The Assassin’s Workout had me laughing 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    • I pretty much laughed when I saw the workout image too. After sputtering “OMG. THEY HAVE ONE?!”

      I don’t know why I’m surprised. If there’s a Superman workout, there’s definitely an assassin one too, lol!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love assassins too! But like you, I don’t think I’ve read enough. My favorite is probably Robin LaFever’s His Fair Assassin trilogy and even though I don’t think she’s an assassin, Six of Crows’ Inej Ghafa always comes to mind when I think of assassins. I must find more assassin books to read!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ooooh I love them too!
    And Assassin’s creed games 😀 (I wouldn’t recommend the books, I’ve tried reading these but they simply were boring comparing to games). And some other games with sneaky killers.

    As for the books, I have 6 I could recommend, maybe you’ll find some of them interesting:
    1. Hogfather by Terry Pratchett – a bit unconventional maybe and the assassin isn’t the main hero, but he is the villain of the story
    2. Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb – well, obviously. If you want to read about assassin’s this book is a must!
    3. Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers – pretty good one indeed, so yes, I’ll add that to recommendation even though I’ve seen others mentioned it already
    4. The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks – fantastic! It might require few chapters to get into the mood, but it’s worth it
    5. Dead Man’s Party by Jeff Marsick, Barnett Scott – if you want to check out a graphic novel that one was great
    6. Ash and Echoes by Augusta Li – well that might not be for everyone, but I liked it. There’s a trio of main characters and an assassin is one of them. I think the 3rd book is concentrated on him.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I looove the Night Angel books! I think Durzo is my quintessential assassin. Oh, sorry. Wetboy, lol!

      And I’ve totally added Robin LaFevers. A girl assassin as the MC? Count me in!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: June Wrap-Up | Story and Somnomancy

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