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Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder
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Magic Study (edition 2006)

by Maria V. Snyder

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2,0471113,258 (4.01)102
Member:keristars
Title:Magic Study
Authors:Maria V. Snyder (Author)
Info:LUNA books (Harlequin imprint) (2006); ebook edition, 327pp
Collections:Books I own
Rating:***
Tags:21st century, fiction, ya, fantasy, magic, form:e-book, series, series:study, pov:first-person

Work details

Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder

Recently added bymalinah, jem425, peter.berlin, jillbone, MathewBridle, private library, reneputt, bur0030, limulus29, raii
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That’s part two of the Yelana Zaltana trilogy read. Much like its predecessor: fun, fast paced and a few good twists to keep it interesting. I have but one complaint though. There is an instance where the characters are searching through a citadel and the distance is given in blocks (twice). Now, if you are an American, living in a city that would be fine, except most of the world are not. The real issue with this measurement is that it is so out of place it spoils the moment. That aside this is a very worthy sequel / continuation as it picks up right where the last one left off.
I shall now go and read the last one in the series: Fire Study.
( )
  MathewBridle | May 4, 2015 |
I fear that I’m in deep trouble of turning into a rabid fan girl about this series. I loved this whole freakin’ book. So much, in fact, that I was sad to see it end and actually made myself start reading it slower. Anyway, this is series I don’t recommend reading out of order, because Magic Study picks up almost exactly where the previous book left off.

Yelena has once again gotten the shaft in life. Just when she has made friends and started to feel all cozy in Ixia she’s forced to leave because of the whole “all magicians will be killed on sight” rule. So now she has no choice but to go on down to Sitia, where she’ll start learning about her magic abilities and meet the family she was supposedly stolen from years ago. Only her welcome isn’t too friendly when she finally arrives on her lost family’s doorstep. Her brother has decided that she’s an impostor who was sent to Sitia to spy for Ixia and he’s determined to see her punished for it. So he starts taking every opportunity to rattle off his theory about her to anyone who will listen.

This, of course, doesn’t make Yelena the most popular girl in Sitia. In fact, she’s back to being shunned by everyone around her except for a few people, but even they are leery of her and her strange powers. Then there’s the fact that one of the people who have listened to her brother’s ramblings about her is the lost prince of Ixia who sees Yelena as his golden ticket into reclaiming the throne. And if that isn’t enough, Yelena also finds herself getting more and more involved in Sitia’s problem with a crazy ass guy who’s romping around near the plains, abducting young women and then stealing their souls.

It was great to dive back into the rich world that Snyder is building in these books. Once again she manages to not go into information overload, but still give us enough information where we can see the differences between both Sitia and Ixia. I think I would’ve liked to have seen more about the politics of both countries, but I also believe it would’ve interrupted the flow of the book if Snyder had tried to cram more information in.

Sitia is a really laid back country when compared with Ixia, so it was interesting to watch Yelena trying to adjust to the different customs and laws. The hostility between both countries is still going strong, so Yelena ends up taking a lot of crap from people who see Ixia’s ways coming out in her actions. And the bad vibes and rumors only increase around Yelena with the arrival of Ixian representatives in the place where she’s studying, which apparently is kind of like the capital of Sitia.

This, of course, brings some characters from the last book into the midst of things, which I was really happy for. It was great to see the power twins, Valek, and the Commander involved in this book’s plot. The new characters that were introduced were also great. They all meshed together nicely and none of the characters just felt thrown in for the sake of having fresh meat in the story. I also really appreciate the fact that everyone under the sun doesn’t adore and love Yelena to bits, I really don't like it when series end up doing that. The worse part about this book is that yet again, it ends with giving us a taste of the plot for the next book leaving me wanting the next one now. ( )
  Book_Minx | Jan 24, 2015 |
This is a wonderful sequel to [Book:Poison Study], which I read this from start to finish in one session. The natural progression of the story as well as great character development hold this book to the same standards as it predecessor.

Janco and Ari who appear in the first book provide the comic relief in this one, a new character Cahil provides some mystery and becomes a short-lived love interest, and new friend Dax who loves to tell Yelena of the astounding rumours about her as they crop up.

I loved Yelena's close relationship with Cahil's horse Topaz and her own incredibly loyal horse Kiki and their love of apples and peppermints.

I felt the Commander was ingenious in his/her disguise as an Ambassador visiting Sitia, with only Yelena knowing the truth of his/her identity. I also liked the way the Commander handled Yelena's order of excution - a very wise decision was made.

Valek was as ruthless as always still protecting Yelena the best he can at risk to his own life. Yelena's ability to get below Valek's tough magic-immune exterior is nice but we still do not know much about Valek's past for me to truly love him as a character.

As for Yelena herself, her Soul-Finder status was brilliantly put across. Her compassion towards the beggar boy Fisk and his friends, the way she reached the catatonic Tula when others had given up on her, her ability to forgive her brother Leif and helping him heal his soul and her extraordinary ability to comfort and heal others is what makes this book worthy of all the praise it deserves. ( )
  Cynical_Ames | Sep 23, 2014 |
Magic Study
4 Stars

Exiled from Ixia, Yelena travels to Sitia for a reunion with her family. Unfortunately, things aren’t all rosy as Yelena soon finds herself struggling with the difficulties of getting to know parents who are virtual strangers and a brother who resents her return. Upon beginning her studies at the Citadel, Yelena learns some troubling truths about her magic and a sadistic serial killer sets his sights on her. As she becomes embroiled in an age old struggle against evil, Yelena’s strength and ability will be put to the test.

As with the first book in the series, Magic Study contains harsh themes including rape and torture. As such, it might not be suitable for younger or impressionable readers despite its apparent categorization as Young Adult.

While not as fast paced or original (not unexpected as this is a sequel) as Poison Study, Yelena is an engaging and resourceful heroine, and accompanying her as she begins her magical training and investigates a series of brutal crimes is quite entertaining. She does seem to get ambushed, kidnapped, tortured and beaten several times and one hope she would be more careful but apparently not...

The secondary characters are an interesting mix from Yelena’s agoraphobic mother and obnoxious brother to the arrogant heir to Ixia’s throne and the enterprising street urchin who comes to Yelena’s aid on more than one occasion. There are also other more familiar faces: the Commander is as enigmatic as ever and Yelena’s camaraderie with Ari and Jenco is wonderful. It is, however, disappointing that Valek takes his time putting an appearance, but he is ultimately well worth the wait and things heat up in more ways than one upon his arrival.

One a final note, Gabra Zackman's narration is very good although she does sound older than Yelena's 20 years. Nevertheless, this doesn't bother me as Yelena is very mature for her age.

All in all, an enjoyable installment and I look forward to continuing with the series particularly as Snyder is planning additional books. ( )
  Lauren2013 | Aug 20, 2014 |
“Living is a risk...Every decision, every interaction, every step, every time you get out of bed in the morning, you take a risk. To survive is to know you're taking that risk and to not get out of bed clutching illusions of safety.”

I still liked this book! I devoured it pretty fast because it was that good! Yeah, Poison Study is better than this one but that does not mean that this is a bad book. I just felt like there is just too much happening and one thing is not even finished or solved and then there's another something going on, etc. It was action-packed like seriously but I wish the author gave me time to breathe.

Brief Summary:

Yelena was on her way to Sitia because magicians are not welcome in Ixia. She was looking forward to training in the Magician's Keep for her to learn to control her powers and maybe, she can meet her family, too. She did not want to be away from Valek but she have to. But what she found in Sitia is not what she expected. She met all kinds of people, good or bad, funny or annoying, and soon, she saw herself kind of softening to Sitia.. Some evil things happened and she dies everything that she can to help. But some people are stopping her. And sometimes she wonders if she should trust these people's plans or just trust her own instinct...

The Characters:

Yelena. Ha. This girl is always looking for trouble! She is so stubborn that sometimes I want to shake some sense in her. Yeah, she does those things for others but I just wish she would listen for once! But I don't know.. sometimes, I liked her recklessness. It was making things interesting.

How cool is it that she can communicate to horses? I just adore Kiki, Yelena's horse. I wish I could feed her peppermints myself. Haha.

I liked how Yelena helped those poor beggars without just giving them what they want. She helped them, taught them how to move and function on their own. It was touching.

Valek. Ehhhh. Though he was not in the book most of the time (and just appeared in definitely unexpected and cute moments), I appreciate his presence nonetheless.

“When I carved this, my thoughts were on you, love. Your life is like this snake's coils. No matter how many turns it makes, you'll end up back where you belong. With me.”

Valek is confident, cocky, mischievous, reliable and many other things. I like all of them about him.

Cahil. Duuuude, I want to strangle this guy. He was so annoying! Gaaah. -_- But, I pity him actually. I think he was just being used as a pawn of other people to pursue their personal agendas.

Leif. He is Yelena's older brother and he is another guy that I wanted to choke to death. But.. before I do that, I wonder about some things.. It was not explained why he was experiencing so much guilt, why he is living in so much pain. I want him and Yelena to restore their relationship.

The other new characters that are introduced are pretty interesting! They absolutely add spice to the book, making it more entertaining.

The ending was okay. I was excited to see where will Yelena go from here. ;)

“My future appeared to be a long twisted road fraught with knots, tangles, and traps. Just the way I liked it.”

Final Rating: 3.5/5 stars ( )
  margaraawr | Aug 8, 2014 |
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Dedication
To my children, Luke and Jenna, a constant source of inspiration and love. You both are truly magical.

In loving memory of Anthony Foster.
First words
"We're here," Irys said.
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My Story Weaver had to be laughing his blue ass off right now.
-Yelena
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Book description
Yelena is on her way to be reunited with the family she'd been stolen from long ago. Although she has gained her freedom, she can't help feeling isolated in Sitia. Her Ixian background has changed her in many ways, and her newfound friends and relatives don't think it's for the better. Despite the turmoil, she's eager to start her magical training. But her plans take a radical turn when she becomes involved with a plot to reclaim Ixia's throne for a lost prince, and gets entangled in powerful rivalries with her fellow magicians. If that wasn't bad enough, it appears her brother would love to see her dead. Luckily, Yelena has some old friends to help her with her new enemies.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0778327124, Paperback)

So far, I've managed to survive. You would think after being kidnapped as a child, imprisoned in my teens and released to become a poison taster, I would have endured enough. But no. The discovery of my magical abilities—powers forbidden in Ixia—has resulted in an execution order. My only chance is to flee to Sitia, my long-lost birthplace.

But Sitia is unfamiliar. I'm treated like an enemy—even by my own brother. Plus I can't control my powers. I want to learn about my magic, but there isn't time. A rogue magician has emerged and I'm targeted as his next victim.

Will my magical abilities save me…or be my downfall?

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:37:04 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

The second novel in Snyder's Study series. After saving the Commander's life, Yelena is set free to get her magic under control or be destroyed by the other wizards for disrupting the order of things.

(summary from another edition)

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