by Maria V. Snyder
Published by Mira
Book 3 in the Poison Study series
The apprenticeship is over—now the real test has begun.
When word that Yelena is a Soulfinder—able to capture and release souls—spreads like wildfire, people grow uneasy. Already Yelena's unusual abilities and past have set her apart. As the Council debates Yelena's fate, she receives a disturbing message: a plot is rising against her homeland, led by a murderous sorcerer she has defeated before...
Honor sets Yelena on a path that will test the limits of her skills, and the hope of reuniting with her beloved spurs her onward. Her journey is fraught with allies, enemies, lovers and would-be assassins, each of questionable loyalty. Yelena will have but one chance to prove herself—and save the land she holds dear.
RATED: 16+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Violence New Adult Boring
Fire Study is the third and final book in Maria Snyder's Poison Study series, and centers around Yelena, once again stuck in Serian politics. This final book has her finally coming to terms and full knowledge of her unusual powers.
Vague description, huh? Well, that's because I am a little unsure what I just read. It honestly felt like I was reading a first draft, instead of a published book. The writing was very choppy, jumping from one event to the next with little to no segue in between. I was rather surprised to be honest, because this style of writing it not on par with the first book of this series, which was brilliant. I had a hard time getting through this book without stopping frequently from boredom.
How did it get to this point? I went from loving these characters, to being "meh" about them. Yelena is almost robotic with her emotions, which makes no sense. She is a human being. When faced with losing people she cares for, she should act ... I don't know ... upset? I know people grieve in different ways, but Yelena's character seems harsh. Her connections with side characters were lacking ... greatly. One of the best parts of this series is her relationship with Valek, and when we get them together, 90% of the time there is nothing but the mission happening. No character or relationship growth.
With my obvious displeasure with how this book turned out, I am glad it's over ... but I was looking forward to reading the next series in this world, and now I am not so sure I want to. If I can put aside my utter disappointment, perhaps I will at least try it. Maybe I will find closure on this series, because right now, I feel a bit robbed.
Dax trying to teach Yelena fire magic, and instead she makes him do it
Valek and Yelena in the war room
Valek seeing Yelena after thinking she was dead
Valek taking care of his lady before running her errand
Where to Buy
Reed: "This is the Soulfinder? She is not what I expected."
Yelena: "What did you expect?"
Reed: "A large dark-skinned woman. You look like you could not survive a sandstorm let alone find and release a soul."
Yelena: "It's a good thing you're not my Story Weaver. You're easily distracted by the pattern of the cloth and can't see the quality of the threads."
Yelena: "Get as close to the guards as you can. Poke a small hole in the capsule and squirt the liquid near them. Don't get it on you."
Leif: "Why not?"
Yelena: "you'll have a necklace snake trying to mate with you."
Leif: "Gee, Yelena. I'm so glad you're home. It's good to know Mother is doing something useful with her time."
Moon Man: "I thought your mother made perfumes."
Chestnut: "It all depends on how you look at it. To a male necklace snake, that stuff is a perfume."
Leif: "So the first time you met Master Jewelrose, she tried to kill you? And you told me before Valek had wanted to kill you twice. Gee, Yelena, you're not a people person, are you?'
I pushed away my worries and focused on Valek, wrapping my arms around him. But the feel of his muscles through his shirt wasn't enough. I yanked at it, wanting to touch his skin, wanting to wear his skin.
He pulled away, straightening.
Valek: "In the war room, love? What if someone comes in?"
I stood and removed his shirt.
Yelena: "Then they'll have a good story to tell."
He adopted the pretense of being offended.
Yelena: "Prove me wrong."
His eyes lit with the challenge.
Valek: "Are you real? Or just some cruel joke?"
Yelena: "I'm real. A real simpleton, Valek. I should never have said ... I should never have done ... Forgive me, please?"
Valek: "Would you promise ever to do it again?"
Yelena: "Sorry, I can't."
Valek: "Then you certainly are real. A real pain in the ass, but that's who I fell in love with."
Yelena: "I never realized how annoying you can be."
Valek: "You know I'm right."
Yelena: "I could prove you wrong. I can be corrupt."
It was my turn to leer.
Valek looked over at Janco and the others. They milled about a small fire, trying to appear nonchalant, but I knew they listened to every word.
Valek: "Not in front of the children, love. But I'll hold you to that."
Yelena: "But I don't have a spirit guide."
Leif: "Your bat! I thought he was strange. Beside the obvious fact that he wanted to hang out with you."
Valek: "At least you already found one soul, love."
Yelena: "Moon Man's?"
Valek: "Mine. And I trust you not to lose it."
Check out the rest of the Chronicles of Ixia Series