Title: Poison Study
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Publisher: Mira Books
A quick death
Or slow poison…
Yelena has a choice – be executed for murder, or become food taster to the Commander of Ixia. She leaps at the chance for survival, but her relief may be short-lived.
Life in the palace is full of hazards and secrets. Wily and smart, Yelena must learn to identify poisons before they kill her, recognise whom she can trust and how to spy on those she can’t. And who is the mysterious Southern sorceress who can reach into her head?
When Yelena realises she has extraordinary powers of her own, she faces a whole new problem, for using magic in Ixia is punishable by death…
I tend to avoid books that are hard-core fantasy, with elaborate worlds that only share some similarities with our own world. I don’t know why, considering there are some great fantasy books, but sometimes they just aren’t interesting to me. Anyway, this book is the type of high-fantasy – a world that isn’t our own, whether in this time period or a past one. Despite that, or perhaps because of that, I really enjoyed this book.
This book has been marked to-read for a long time, along with its sequel. I’d heard a few good things, but not much – this isn’t exactly a marketing priority, so it’s not like I saw it at my local bookstore or library. When it was available to borrow on my library’s e-book program, I immediately checked it out and began reading it. I read it in just a few days, interested to know what would happen. It’s been at least a month since I read it, but I still remember a lot of it. Yelena’s life is certainly never dull, which makes for an exciting book to read.
Yelena’s world was an interesting one. It mixed magic, medieval politics, and court espionage. Sometimes I had trouble following certain parts, like the different generals who governed over various parts of the kingdom, all ruled by a king who seemed ruthless but was actually logical and perhaps even kind, when no one was watching.
Needless to say, as soon as I was done with this book I gladly went on to the next one. This was an interesting book that created a great world and an exciting cast of characters who all come together in a great story. I feel like I haven’t said enough about this book, but it’s hard for me to say what I liked so much about it, other than pretty much everything.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars