Saturday, 24 January 2015

Review: Shadow Study by Maria V Snyder

GoodReads: Once, only her own life hung in the balance.

Oddly enough, when Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. But she'd 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, they are beset on all sides by those vying for power through politics and intrigue. Valek's job - and his life - are in danger. As Yelena tries to uncover the scope of these plots, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. She must keep that a secret - or her enemies will discover just how vulnerable she really is - while searching for who or what is responsible for neutralizing her powers.

Yes, the days of tasting poisons were much simpler. And certainly not as dangerous.

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Expected publication date: 24/02/15

I love The Study trilogy, so when I heard that there was going to be three more books coming out I was really excited. However, if I'm being honest despite loving Valek, Yelena & the gang I was also a little worried, because sometimes completed series' are best left alone, in my opinion. The reason I say this is because in the past I've had experiences where I've enjoyed a completed series only to find there are going to be more books, and then when said books end up being disappointing it ruins my enjoyment of the whole series.

I'm happy to report, however, that that wasn't the case here! The plot was fast-paced and action packed as usual, and it was great seeing both old and new characters emerge throughout the story. Prior to reading this I decided to re-read the Study trilogy, which I'm glad I did as it helped refresh my mind on the characters and world. There are several references to the events and characters from the Glass trilogy, so if you have read that trilogy it will help you understand said references. However, as someone who hasn't read it I didn't feel lost. I still understood what was happening, so, I don't think you necessarily have to have read it to get the gist of what is going on.

Shadow Study alternates between Yelena's and Valek's POV. It was interesting learning about Valek's past and getting his thoughts on some of the events of the previous books. It made my love for him grow if that's possible.

In Shadow Study Yelena is under attacked by unknown enemies and to make matters worse her magic has been blocked. Valek is also busy trying to undercover the culprits behind some black market trading. The book opens with them together, but shorty after the action kicks off they go their separate ways. Which leads me to my next point...In Poison Study Yelena and Valek are together for the majority of the book, but in the books that follow they are separated for most of it. As much as I love how strong they are independently I would love to see them working together in future books, as opposed to being apart for most of it and only joining together towards the end.



  1. I've got the first book of the Study series on my shelf and I've been meaning to read it for ages. So it's good to hear that after the trilogy that you loved and now Shadow study that you continue to love the plot-line and the characters. Great review, Renu! :)

  2. I've forgotten so much of the Study trilogy except for the fact that I really enjoyed the books so I'm glad to see that the excellence only continues here. You've made me so relieved, Renu, and I can't wait for this to release, now. Fantastic review, dear! :)

  3. I really enjoyed Poison Study but it's been years since I read it so I'm sure I'd have to refresh my memory if I picked this up. I'm happy to hear you enjoyed it but I'd want more couple time as well. Wonderful review, Renu! :)

  4. I can't really remember most of the Study trilogy anymore but I did like Valek and Yelena so I'm looking forward to this one's release. I'd like to see the two of them working more together too.


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