Saturday, June 28, 2014

Review: Poison Study- Maria V Snyder

Published March 1st 2007 by Mira 

Goodreads Synopsis

Choose: A quick death…Or slow poison...

About to be executed for murder, Yelena is offered an extraordinary reprieve. She'll eat the best meals, have rooms in the palace—and risk assassination by anyone trying to kill the Commander of Ixia.

And so Yelena chooses to become a food taster. But the chief of security, leaving nothing to chance, deliberately feeds her Butterfly's Dust—and only by appearing for her daily antidote will she delay an agonizing death from the poison.

As Yelena tries to escape her new dilemma, disasters keep mounting. Rebels plot to seize Ixia and Yelena develops magical powers she can't control. Her life is threatened again and choices must be made. But this time the outcomes aren't so clear

My Review
"But you’ve slipped under my skin, invaded my blood and seized my heart.”
“That sounds more like a poison than a person,” was all I could say. His confession had both shocked and thrilled me.
“Exactly,” Valek replied. “You have poisoned me.”

Poison Study was one of the books which had been recommended to me countless times and it had been on my TBR list for forever. I'm so glad I finally got around to reading it.

The book was a perfect blend of all things I adore in a paranormal fantasy- a badass female protagonist, a swoon worthy hero, a psychotic villain, an engaging plot, truckloads of action, a subtle yet passionate romance and some compelling world building. The book was similar in design to The Throne of Glass, another of my favourites and the protagonist Yelena was a toned down, less cocky version of Celaena. Valek and Chaol were almost identical in essence and I grew to love both characters almost immediately.

The concept of food tasters, assassins, rebellions and magic provided a heady mix and the absence of the oft found love triangle in most YA books was a relief. Yelena's suffering at the hands of her brutal caretakers touched a chord and was mildly nauseating. But her uncrushed spirit and dauntless enthusiasm were admirable. I loved the gradual development of Valek and Yelena's relationship- how Valek goes from wanting to kill his new food taster to killing for her sake. His sarcastic and serious demeanour were, to put it bluntly- HAWT and I fell for him long before Yelena did. Yelena's friendship with her trainers Ari, Janco and Maren was precious. Ari and Janco's light humour and protectiveness for Yelena along with Maren's grumpy exterior were cute. 

Most of the twists and turns of the story were absolutely unprecedented and enhanced the appeal of an already excellent story. 

Highly recommended for all paranormal fantasy enthusiasts with a preference for strong female characters and an irresistible male lead.

Rating: 5/5 stars!


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