Maria V. Snyder
Published February 28th 2015
Purchase: Book Depository
Once, only her own life hung in the balance…
When Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. She survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia.
Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands—and protect her relationship with Valek.
Suddenly, though, dissent is rising. And Valek’s job—and his life—are in danger.
As Yelena tries to uncover her enemies, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. And now she must find a way to keep not only herself but all that she holds dear alive.
I was both excited and nervous when I found out that Snyder was going to be continuing Yelena's story in a new 3 part installment. I've seen it done with other series that I loved, and it just ruined the series for me. But this is Snyder, so I needn't have fretted because it seems she can do no wrong when it comes to the world of Sitia and Ixia - I loved it!
I highly recommend reading the Ice Study novella, which Snyder rewrote recently as a prequel to Shadow Study. I mean, like with all the other novellas, you can get away with not reading them, but things will make more sense if you take the time to do so. You can find it here, on her website.
Overall, Shadow Study was everything I hoped for and more. I suppose I'm a little disappointed that we don't see Yelena in her full mastery of her magic and kick some epic butt with it - but the series is still young, and she still kicks some serious butt without it.
Probably my favourite part about this novel is that we get different POVs! Yes, you read that correctly. This time around when get to see the world from inside of Yelena's, Valek's AND Janco's heads! All my favourite characters, so super exciting stuff.
I've had a long time love for Snyder and her writing, but she is so god damn EVIL when it comes to her cliffhangers! I swear they will be the death of me! When I finished it I was all:
Then had an epic rage quit and threw the book across the room in frustration. I of course immediately regretted harming the poor thing and leapt out of bed to pick it up and stroke it while apologising profusely . . . considering this was 1am in the morning, my housemates were not pleased with my antics.
Now, don't get me wrong. I don't have a problem with what happened, but rather the fact that Snyder dropped a plot-bomb and then just stopped. I can just imagine her evil laughter while doing it. Eeeevvvil!
The bottom line?
READ EVERYTHING BY SNYDER.
Trust me, you'll thank me later.
4 out of 5
PS. Copied this from the back of Ice Study. I found it both interesting and shocking.