by Maria V. Snyder
got it from a friend on paperbackswap.com
I couldn’t help myself! I tried another book, grew bored, tried another, nothing was working for me so I figured I would go with a winner or I knew I would end up watching too much tv. 🙂 Though I did watch Searching for Sugarman the other night, great movie if you like documentaries and music! Beautiful cinematography.
Yelena has had to flee Ixia for being a magician at the end of Poison Study. So she finds her family and tries to reconnect with a land and people she was abducted from 14 years before. The rules are different from Ixia, she doesn’t remember her family and she can do nothing right. How is she going to reconnect with people she can’t remember, following these different rules and learn her special brand of magic?
Yelena is continuing her journey in Sitia. But there is a killer on the loose and she has her ideas on how to capture him and the Master Magician’s have theirs…she wants to do it her way and they think she is a young untried idiot so they want to do it theirs. She sneaks off and gets in trouble. Lots of trouble. But she learns. She gets hurt, she makes friends and enemies easily and learns more about her powers. We find and lose people and things are not easy.
“Living is a risk,” I snapped at him. “Every decision, every interaction, every step, every time you get out of bed in the morning, you take a risk. To survive is to know you’re taking that risk and to not get out of bed clutching illusions of safety.” (pg 244)
Yelena is tough, she is stubborn and she doesn’t like being the center of attention, but somehow manages to be everywhere she goes. She also has a pretty harsh understanding of the world because of the hell she has been through, but it is what allows her to survive the events of this book. There is a bad guy, and then there is an ok guy with high ideals that he uses to force himself into ruthlessness. This books sets up a lot of conflict for the last book, Fire Study. The action is good. It is at times an interesting psychological study of people and their reactions to Yelena, someone who is powerful and can’t be controlled. We meet more people and magicians who will make a mark in Yelena’s life and we also meet Opal who is the heroine of the spinoff Glass series.
The romance is still lovely, the two trust each other and have developing connections I hope we see more of in Fire Study. There isn’t much detail, but they are very close and spend the little time they get together sharing the same cloak. Snyder keeps things clean.
Being the second in a trilogy, it didn’t feel like the dreaded filler book. We see another extension of Yelena’s life, her family, her background and get more than a glimpse of the type of powers she can wield. I liked it a lot, though I still love the first better, I give it 4.5 stars of blue, painted on a mage of the desert’s body.