Book Review: Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Published by: Harlequin Teen Australia
Publication date: 2009
Source:  Thanks to Harlequin Teen Australia

Choose: A quick death or slow poison ... 

On the eve of her execution for murder, Yelena Zaltana is offered an incredible reprieve - on the condition that she becomes the food taster for the military leader of Ixia, Commander Ambrose.

Avoiding poison is the least of her troubles, however ... General Brazell, father of the man she killed, has vowed bloody revenge; she's beginning to have feelings for her captor, Valek; and someone is plotting the downfall of the current regime.

In a desperate race against time, Yelena must learn to control the growing magical talent withinn her and master the demons of her past. The Commander's life, the future of Ixia and all those she loves depend on it.

My Review:

Favourite Quote:  "Everyone makes choices in life. Some bad, some Good. It's called living, and if you want to bow out, then go right ahead. But don't do it halfway. Don't linger in whiner's limbo."

Fantasy and me have had our ups and downs.  I have only read a handful as it is one of the genres I struggle with. But I had heard good things about Poison Study from everyone and they were right, it is AMAZING.

I love the world Snyder created.  I wouldn't want to swap places with Yelena with her life at risk every day in but I was completely absorbed in the world.  So much adventure and danger it was hard to let go and walk away from this book when I had to.   And Snyder's writing is addictive.  It is such an unbelievably engaging and satisfying read.

You really get a warm feel for all the characters.  What I love about them is they don't feel ordinary.  They are that something special, characters you will never forgot not even the secondary.  They are all mature, smart and strong.  I admire Yelena's courage especially since everyday held danger for her.  And Valek there is something very sexy about his dark and mysterious ways.  Then you have Ari and Janco who keep you entertained.

While the story does focus on Yelena and Valek building each other's trust and respect their romance is very subtle but it does make your heart melt.

"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."

Another good thing about Poison Study it will appeal to adults as well, with Yelena in her late teens and Valek in his late twenties-early thirties.

Overall, Poison Study is a spellbinding read.  Definitely recommend to all fantasy lovers (although I am sure most have already read this) and also to readers who like me are a little afraid but very curious about fantasy this is a fantastic book to try.

Overall rating: 4/5
Writing: 4/5
Plot: 4.5/5
Characters: 4.5/5
Romance: 4/5
Cover: 4/5

For more info:  Visit Maria V. Snyder's website.

Don't forget Maria V. Snyder is in Australia on tour now.  For dates and details visit Harlequin Teens Australia Facebook page.


Braiden said...

Glad you loved it Nic! I’ve read all three of this trilogy - but yet to begin the Study trilogy which you will soon learn in the latter two of the Study trilogy that it is a spin-off series in this world.

I’m seeing Maria in 1.5 hrs YIPPEE! I’m excited.

Anonymous said...

So glad you liked this Niki, I lovvvveee Maria's Books!!! :) :)

Ohhhh Braiden I am SO JEALOUS!! I want to Meet Maria!!!!!!!

abbey said...

I just started reading this book and so far i am loving it!
If it wans't for you posting it in 'your mailbox' i wouldn't have heard of it.
I'm not yet up to the romance part but i already like Valek :)
So glad you liked it as well Nic!

Teddyree said...

I read this one in 2009 and enjoyed it, glad you did too. I loved reading about the lethal poisons and I fell in love with Ari and Janco lol

Leanna (Daisy Chain Book Reviews) said...

I'm not a huge fan of fantasy either. This sounds like a good read though. Great review! :)

Ange said...

Great review Nic! I started reading this book but couldn't get into it. Maybe one day I'll try it again.

Jenny said...

Fantasy is a genre I struggle with at times too, sometimes there's just so much going on in the world that I can't connect with it, but that doesn't sound like the case at all with this one! I like that Valek is a bit older, that's always a good thing for me:)

Savannah said...

I really need to read this series! I have read her other books but have not picked up this one yet! Loved your review.

Anonymous said...

My friend keeps telling me I should read this one but I don't know, I'm not into fantasy a lot.

However, that first line did grab me so I might have to give it a shot.

thanks for your review.

Aleeza said...

what a fantastic review, nic, as always :)

i've been wanting to read this author's other books ever since i read her outside series--which was pretty good! have you read it yet? i can't seem to get my hands on either the study series OR the glass series, which sucks, especially since i've recently gotten into fantasy, but oh well!

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

I haven't read this one... yet, but it has been on my wishlist! :) Oh I love the quotes you picked out. I think I may have to move it up my massive list! :)

Missie said...

Dawww. I'm loving that last quote.

I struggle with fantasy, too. BUT, unique characters and engaging writing.? Yeah, I'm sold!

Anonymous said...

Spellbinding?? Well then Im off to get this one...:)

A Canadian Girl said...

I haven't read this series but I've heard good things about it and so have it on my wishlist. I like that the characters are unforgettable and that the romance is subtle yet still sweet. Great review, Nic!

My keeper shelf said...

I love this series I think it's brillance just kind of sneaks up on you.

Hafsah @ IceyBooks said...

Spellbinding, you say? With a cover that gorgeous, I'm pretty sure I'm really missing out on an awesome fantasy. Thanks for the review, Nic :)

Rummanah Aasi said...

YAY! I love the Study series, one of my favorites from last year. I never heard of it before (I know, I live in a cave sometimes) until a student recommended it to me. I hope you do Valek for your Book Boyfriend. He's incredibly yummy!

Jenny N. said...

Yay to you for finally reading this series. I love this series and I love Valek so I can't wait to see you gush about the next two books :)

Chachic said...

Oooh I remember loving this one when I first read it but I thought the sequel was just okay. I heard from somewhere that the author didn't intend the book to be YA but that's how it became known. It feels like an older YA read for me. :)

Nomes said...

youre right about the romance being subtle. it was so subtle i didnt even pick who the LI was supposed to be until half way though the book, haha (read it pre-goodreads days, otherwise i would have realised valek would be the dude)

loving the review nic :D

YA Book Queen said...

I'm definitely a fantasy fan, but I haven't read this series yet...I'll look for it next time I'm at the library :)

Alyssa@Teens Read and Write said...

Actually I haven't read this but have better get to it. Sounds fantastic! And loving that Aussie cover!

Jacinda (The Reading Housewives) said...

Memorable characters!-YES! I just bought this last night because someone rec'ed it to me :) Great review Nic!

Small Review said...

Yes! I'm so happy you liked Poison Study. This is one of my Special Shelf books. I love Yelena, Valek, their relationship, all the side characters. I also really liked learning about the different poisons. Maria Snyder made it all so interesting.

Andra said...

OH! The second quote is absolutely my favorite! There wasn't a whole lot of romance up till that point so I totally swooned all over myself when I read that! :) Great review chick!

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