Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Poison Study

I've been hearing so many good things about this series, and it's been on my list for so long, that I finally decided to take the plunge. It's always a bit of a risk to have high expectations, particularly when it's a fantasy novel, since I tend to have higher standards for fantasy.  I suppose that's because it's my favorite genre; I've read so much and have become pickier over the years.

This one opens with an interesting premise. Yelena is a young woman who is about to be executed for murder (in her world there are no extenuating circumstances - and we don't really know why she did what she did; that is gradually revealed throughout the course of the novel). She is given a chance to live. She can become food taster to the Commander (someone who is wanted dead by a host of people), or she can continue on her way to the gallows. She chooses life - a life that is measured out by the constant threat of death by poison - and becomes aware of a growing power inside her that she doesn't fully understand.

I really enjoyed this one. Great storytelling, a strong heroine to root for, political intrigue, a romantic interest, a world that is complex and compelling - what's not to like? It was one of those stories that creates a powerful atmosphere and characters that are a believable part of that world. My library shelves this in the adult collection, but I think that it would be just as appealing to teen readers. I look forward to reading the further books in this trilogy.

Books in the Study series:
1. Poison Study
2. Magic Study
3. Fire Study

Poison Study (#1 in the Study series) by Maria V. Snyder (Luna, 2005)


  1. Yay! So happy you liked this one. I think it's my favourite of all the Maria Snyder books. I was disappointed in the last book in the series, but this and the second are fantastic.

    1. I'm sad to hear that about the last book - is it the final one? Did it conclude as a trilogy? I'm in the middle of the second one and am loving it. I suppose it's good to have realistic expectations of the third - thanks for the heads up.


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