BOOK 1: Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
Magic Study description:
You know your life is bad when you miss your days as a poison taster…
With an execution order on her head, Yelena has no choice but to escape to Sitia, the land of her birth. With only a year to master her magic – or face death – Yelena must begin her apprenticeship and travels to the Four Towers of the Magician’s Keep.
But nothing in Sitia is familiar. Not the family to whom she is a stranger. Not the unsettling new facets of her magic. Nor the brother who resents her return. As she struggles to understand where she belongs and how to control her rare powers, a rogue magician emerges – and Yelena catches his eye.
Suddenly she is embroiled in battle of good against evil. And once again it will be her magical abilities that will either save her life…or be her downfall.
This was a great sequel to Poison Study. Just like the first one, this is not a happy fairy tale, and Yelena just doesn’t get a break. I think that’s what makes these books so great. Yelena gets nothing but hell thrown her way, but she continues to roll with the punches. She keeps striving forward and trying to do what she thinks is right. It’s action packed and all the great characters from book one are back, so don’t worry, you’ll get some more of Valek’s awesomeness. I think the situation between her and her family added a nice angle to this book. The fact that her parents take her in, but her mom obviously has suffered issues since the loss of her daughter, and her brother is even angry at her and doesn’t trust her all felt real and alive. Now her brother is someone you don’t like but you can understand and as Yelena tries to figure out how to fit in and understand the new country she’s in, it’s interesting and really makes it very different from the first book while still keeping the returning characters consistent with how you remember them from before. It might have gotten a little cheesy in the end but wasn’t too bad and it’s still seriously amazing and wonderful.