WOW.Just wow.There s a famous quote by Toni Morrison If there s a book that you want to read, but it hasn t been written yet, then you must write it For the past few years I ve taken this quote to heart and written the types of things I love to read.But now I may as well just give up.Touch of Power is the perfect novel for me.Sure the writing style is different to mine, and I d do a completely different approach, and there s nothing in plot, characters or themes that are remotely similar to my own young adult high fantasy but still.WOW.I ve wanted to read this type of book for years Because I could not find a book that fit me so personally, I wrote my own stuff For years.YEARS.I mean, sure there s an over abundance of men female characters not exactly lacking but a very obviously skewed ratio in favour of the masculine characters , and for the half the book I wondered why two of the characters even existed because they weren t given much development which does kick in in the second half, trust me , and I was mad as hell view spoiler when Flea died I kept convincing myself that because the Death Lily ate him he d somehow come back to life I really liked him and I was totally devastated when he died hide spoiler We re really surprised you weren t caught by the locals sooner, Quain said We had a list of healers, Loren said But by the time we learned of their location, they d been executed We always heard the same gossip That they had been caught by doing something stupid Like healing a child, I said My obvious weakness. That awkward moment when you love a book despite hating almost everything in itBook chemistry It is very, very real, and this book is living proof that it exists There are so many elements of Things Khanh Totally Fucking Hates within this book There is a too stupid to live main character, there is deus ex fucking machina up the yin yang, there is a motherfucking asshat of a love interest, there is an attempt at a love triangle, there is almost no relationship building if you thought Valek and Yelena in Poison Study was out of nowhere, wait til you read this book , there is a plot that literally takes you across the entire fucking world with me scratching my head wonderingwhat the actual fuck is going on.But I can t lie I enjoyed this book, and I had a lot of fun with it I don t even know why, I just do I m only human, and my brain can t help overlooking basic common sense sometimes.The Summary Avry of Kazan is on the run for her life Three years on the run Three years of hiding Three terrible years full of fear and loneliness For what My life Yes, I live and breathe and exist Nothing else. She is a wanted woman There is a bounty of gold on her head People want her dead Why She is a healer All healers are to be captured and killed for their crimes.Five years ago, a plague spread across the land, devastating the Fifteen Realms People died in droves So many died that it cast the realms into chaos Governments were destroyed Bands of mercenaries and dictators sprung up in their place There is litle law and no order in the land For all this, healers were blamed Why Because of one false beliefThe people considered those times a war A war that had been started by healers, who then spread the deadly disease, and refused to heal it. All the healers, roughly 100 of them, were graduanlly hunted down, killed Few remain Among them, Avry, who has been running and hiding for years Until, thanks to a soft heart, she healed a sick child and is caught.Avry is sentenced to death She is resigned to dieuntil a man comes to rescue her Kerrick has been searching for her a healer for years His rescue comes at a price Kerrick needs something from herYou re worth alive than dead He paused, knowing he had said the wrong thing I meant, I need you to heal someone for me Once he s better, you can go back into hiding or do whatever you d likeThere s just a problem, she can t, and won t heal the person Kerrick wants her to heal, for reasons of her own I raised my voice Let me make this perfectly clear I will not heal Prince Ryne Nothing you do or say will change my mindKerrick and his men won t let Avry go that easily Avry has been on the run, and she hasn t stayed in one place long enough to realize what s happened She may not like Prince Ryne, but the alternatives to his rule are far worse Among the aspiring rules who want to take over the Fifteen Kingdom are an cult like, fanatical queen The High Priestess, also known as Estrid of Ozero was intolerant of other faiths, and required her subjects to be members of her cultlike religion. Even worse than her is an insane, seductive king Not only is Tohon a despotic dictatorTohon is not trying to help the plague survivors He s gathering them into an army so he can invade all those towns that have managed to reform Towns like Jaxton All so his army can grow And if his forces encounter anyone who refuses to join, they kill him or her Tohon is mentally unstable, and for him to be king of allwould be a living nightmareThe magic he wields is terrifying dangerous Pressing my hand on freezing cold flesh, I summoned my power Nothing happened No magic swelled in my chest Kerrick s comment echoed in my mind I don t feel them.Horrified, I met the gaze of one of my captors Death stared back. As much as she hates Ryne, Avry may not have a choice but to help him Avry and Kerrick are in for a long, dangerous journey One way or another, Avry is sure to meet her death, because what Kerrick wants her to do will kill her.The Setting 1 The Plague The only thing that works really well about the setting is the plague and the healing magic The first stage resembled a stomach bug, and once the person s stomach and bowels were empty, the symptoms transformed into all over aches, pains and a high fever, which was stage two The final stage involved convulsions, delusions and large white blisters on the skin that itched at first, then burned Many of the victims screamed nonstop in pain during the third stage They reacted as if they were burning alive. I love plagues I have a soft spot for horrifying illnesses with a high mortality rate I m a really, really strange person, therefore, I absolutely loved the way this book described the plague and how it killed.I love the way that the magical healing system worked in this book Healers are magicians, there are 11 other classes of magic within the Fifteen Realms, and Healers work their magic by absorbing the sick person s illness and taking it into themselves It works for diseases, sicknesses, as well as injuries I sent my magic into Belen s wounds, flooding them.Pain stabbed deep into my stomach, blood ran down, soaking my waistband I made it to the small fire before I collapsed My muscles felt as if they d been shredded and I couldn t breathe The pain increased as acid leaked from my pierced stomach and burned my flesh. Healers do not die because they heal quickly from the injuries and illnesses they absorb into themselves There is one notable exception to this rule the plague.2 The Fifteen Realms It doesn t work for me It is a generic fantasy setting that has elements that feel oddly out of place The dialogue feels too modern, it wouldn t be out of place in today s setting, and there are things in the book that feel they don t belong Like hair dyeThe reddish brown sets off your beautiful sea green eyes better, Mom said But if you choose blond, I ll give you the dye so you can do your rootsAnd champagneA slight chance Let s break out the champagneAvry She is similar to Yelena in her character development, only considerably less sympathetic For one, she is too soft hearted, and that makes her often too stupid to live Avry is a kind woman, it cannot be denied The only thing is that softness almost killed her.Avry loves children She hates seeing children sick She is a healer on the run, she cannot afford to expose herself, but time after time she risks her own life to heal a sick child, knowing that it will expose her and she will have to run away yet again It is a fault many of her fellow healers took Avry was rescued from certain death the other healers weren t so fortunateHeading generally northwest, and stopping only in the bigger settlements You d last aboutsix, maybe eight weeks before healing a child and taking off Loren settled on his bedroll next to the fire.When I thought about it, he was right A zing of fear traveled up my spine If I survived this mission, I would have to be extra vigilant. Kerrick and his men located her because her pattern of stopping and healing a child was so obvious Not the brightest move if you wanted to survive.She repeatedly puts herself in danger She runs away into the forest, not knowing what lurks there She risks her life and that of her companions for foolish, grandiose missions, like a side trip to save a girl.Heroic, yes Noble, yes Smart No.Avry makes ridiculous, improbable plans that fail His touch zipped right through me, igniting every single nerve ending My body responded Desire flared I leaned against him and kissed him back.So much for my plan. Yet she somehow always succeeds in her mission, however unlikely, however stupid the toolsHow could I do anything, Tohon All I have left are these I reached into my pocket slowly and withdrew my stones What are they Sepp asked Juggling stones SeeI did like her character development, Avry went from a woman without a purpose, who doesn t really care whether or not she diesDo you want to be executed Some things are worse than death, I said. To a person who finds meaning in life, who feels that she has something to contribute, who has power that only she can wieldBelen, I decide who I heal Me Not Kerrick Not you Not anyone It s my decision The only one I have leftThe Romance With a strangled cry, Kerrick lost his temper Belen lunged toward Kerrick and I raised an arm to block Kerrick s strike, but we were both too slow Kerrick backhanded me across my cheek The force of the blow sent me to the ground. No No No Motherfucking douchebag Maria V Snyder wrote another series, Poison Study That series features one of my three book boyfriends, Valek Kerrick doesn t hold a candle to Valek Kerrick is not worthy of breathing in the same air.Kerrick is a jerk The romance, or should I say, bromance, in this book isn t between Avry and Kerrick, it s between Kerrick and Prince Ryne As far as Kerrick is concerned, the sun rises and sets on Prince RyneBecause Ryne is a brilliant strategist, and has outsmarted Tohon beforeRyne is important than anyone, than the fate of his best friend, than the fates of a girlIn case you haven t been paying attention, if Ryne is important to me than Belen s life, then he s certainly a higher priority than some girlSave the Realm Kerrick has absolute faith in Ryne An impossible task Ryne will find a way You can t know that for certain I can His gaze burned into mine I wouldn t have spent two years searching for you if I didn t have utter faith in himThroughout the book, Avry finds herself thinking of Ryne, dreaming of him, smelling his springtime sunshine scent I don t buy it for a moment, because there is zero relationship development between Kerrick and Avry.Kerrick is a jerk, an abusive jerkNo one else has backhanded me, starved me, manacled me to a tree and let me freeze each night Therefore, I don t have anyone else to compare you toHe is arrogant, he is unwavering, he is high handed I don t like him one bit, and I can t understand why Avry does.What can I say I loved this book anyway Damned book chemistry. Haar Gave Om Zieken Te Genezen Levert De Jonge Avry Niet Het Gewenste Respect Op Integendeel Al Jarenlang Wordt Haar Soort Opgejaagd En Vermoord, En Als Verantwoordelijk Aangewezen Voor Het Verspreiden Van Een Epidemie Die Duizenden Het Leven KostteAls Avry Haar Gave Gebruikt Om Een Stervend Kind Te Redden, Wordt Ze Verraden Door Dies Ouders En Zonder Pardon Ter Dood Veroordeeld Terwijl Ze Op Haar Terechtstelling Wacht, Wordt Ze Onverwacht Uit Haar Cel Bevrijd Door Een Mysterieuze Man Het Volk Waar Hij Toe Behoort Heeft Avry S Gave Nodig Om Hun Stervende Prins Te Redden Dezelfde Prins Die Verantwoordelijk Was Voor Het Uitbreken Van De Epidemie In KazanHet Redden Van De Prins Betekent Zo Goed Als Zeker Avry S Dood, Maar Een Echt Leven Had Ze Toch Al Nooit En Nu Moet Ze Kiezen Haar Gave Gebruiken Om De Ultieme Vorm Van Barmhartigheid Te Tonen Of Te Sterven In Het Nu Al Verloren Gevecht Voor Erkenning Van Haar Volk It s Maria V Snyder people She can do no wrongI can t decide what s worse Losing family members or not having a family member to loseUnfortunately, that is a question many people had to ask themselves in the Fifteen Realms A plague killed millions of poor souls, and the healers were the ones to blame, despised and on the run, hunted down and executed The survivors were in no better condition than the dead, kingdoms and governments collapsed and among the ruins rose those who craved power Avry of Kazan was the last healer alive who was rescued by a strange team with one goal heal the prince you loathe or else the king who commands the armies of the walking dead will prevail While traveling in the woods and snowy mountains, fighting mercenaries and carnivorous plants and infiltrating enemy camps, Avry found an unexpected family and a place in the world, and she was the one to determine the fate of this world, even if it meant giving up her own life Magician, heal thyself. Since Poison Study is one of my favorite books, I already knew that Maria V.Snyder is an extremely talented author But yet in Touch of Power she didn t fail to amaze me Her magic system and the world building are solid and presented in a way you feel like a part of this world Her writing is rich, with the right amount of detail without tiring the reader, and she handles masterly the element of surprise and the plot twists I loved her secondary characters, Belen the protective Poppa Bear, Loren and Quain the funny and loyal monkeys and Flea the former street rat Avry is a very kind heroine, she knows some of her decisions are risky or foolish but she can t stop herself from helping people She bears the weight of the world in her shoulders and she has to put aside her personal judgements in order to undestand the dire situations and make up her mind And of course, there is KerrickGood to know I made a lasting impression Oh, you made an impression Like a stone caught in my bootNot the typical gallant prince, Kerrick is actually rude and a cold hearted bastard His only goal is to save Ryne, their only chance at succeeding against ruthless Tohon and his devious schemes God I hate that man using any means necessary There was no insta love with Avry, mostly sarcasm, fights and banters Yet he came to trust her, to count on her and eventually to put aside his logic whenever she was concerned And despite his harsh manners, I fell deeply in love with him Obviously.If you don t want great characters and great romance and great plot and general greatness , then don t read the Healer series But if you do, there is a brand new world full of wonders waiting for you P.S Whenever I listen to this song I think of Kerrick 3.5 StarsAvry is a healer in a harsh world where healers are hunted, because everyone believes they started a plague In fact, most healers have already been killed, and Avry has been in hiding for two years trying to avoid being murdered She is soon abducted by a group of rogues who are trying to convince her to heal a prince that she really doesn t like Throw in the fact that if she saves him, she loses her life and you see why they must convince her that the prince is worth saving They take a long, wild journey to find the prince.What I really enjoyed about this book was the adventure and characters Avry is a sweet, strong, smart, selfless character Usually when I think about a character so selfless the term doormat comes to mind, but this is absolutely not the case with Avry She s willing to sacrifice herself for the greater good, but if you make her mad she will get in your face with a sharp comeback Her band of friends are also really fun Belen was such a sweetheart, and Kerrick was a great leader I loved the loyalty and bond they shared for each other.The plot was okay I would give it stars for originality as I do think it was a unique story For me it was a nice pace The story moved quickly, but was easy to follow Deduct stars for the fact that the plot pretty much goes nowhere, though More about that in spoiler below.What I did not enjoy was the predictability and pretty much everything about the ending This part contains spoilers so on that is here view spoiler The one gripe I had about this book was the way it ended Throughout the whole book we are constantly reminded that Avry is going die because the plague will kill her when she saves the prince I don t like that the story was built upon this solely because honestly we all knew this wasn t going to happen I guess since this was what everything built towards it made the book have zero suspense for me, and kind of a I don t care feeling about what happens Every time the author mentioned about Avry dying when she heals the prince I just kept getting really annoyed and rolling my eyes likereally You re going to keep saying that Then when the ending finally did come and we actually see what happened I was just like wow, that was lame hide spoiler I avoided reading this book for a long time I d loved Poison Study but the word on the street was that the rest of the Study series wasn t great and that Poison Study had been beginners luck But I was kind of blown away by how much I loved Touch of Power I simply couldn t put it down and that flabbergasted me.This is one of those walking fantasy books where the characters spend a LOOOOOOONNNNGGGG TIIIIIIIIiiiimmmmeee goooooooooiiiiiinnnng plaaaaaaaaceeeees However, there s also heaps of action, world building and just a bit of naughty no no shenanigans, so keep that in mind too In fact, it was the perfect blend of walking, kick something s ass, flirt and walk again to keep me glued to the page like some kind of junkee holding out for their next hit.We re in this recently plague ridden world that s trying to pull itself back together and multiple kingdoms are struggling to reclaim power after many of the old ones have collapsed and fallen Avry s trying to live in this world but the problem is that she s this badass healer and everyone is trying to kill her Enter Kerrick.He kidnaps her against her will to heal his prince and thus begins our merry adventure Let s start with the fact that Avry kicks butt, I love her and I hope that one day I can find a girl just like her to marry and spend the rest of my life with Kerrick, on the otherhand, can die a fiery death in the Pit of Despair for all I care Avry was too good for you Okay, so he eventually became bearable and I eventually stopped plotting his demise The point is, when you hold all tickets for the Annoying Douche Train then you need to seriously consider riding it all the way to Getthefuckoutsville, dude.But, luckily, there is this cast of characters that I just loved with the passion of a thousand One Direction fans who ve just read a Harry That scrawny one fanfic Belen and Flea particularly were adorable whilst Loren and Quain tended to blend into each other It was also the bad guy, Tohan, that kind of helped make this book He was so psychotic swinging like a pendulum between titillatingly evil and just plain terrifying.The writing was certainly fantastic with rich and vivid descriptions of the countryside and people It was very well paced, never boring or painful to read The world building was interesting even if there were a couple of strange oddities to construction of Avry s abilities and the over all way it ties into the story.But in the end, I was left bereft when this finished Desirous of the sequel like a widow who just lost her lover In the end, isn t that what matters most Otherwise what are we all here for This review, and others like it, can be found on my blog, Rating Clarification 3.5 4 StarsI know everyone loved The Study series, which I ve yet to finish but honestly I enjoyed Touch of Power a lot than I did Poison Study Unlike the depressed and melodramatic atmosphere that I got from Poison Study, Touch of Power was a breath of fresh air Don t get me wrong the first scene has the heroine listening to the tortured cries of a dying baby and contemplating whether or not she should heal her But I loved Avry s glass is half full outlook on life I ve been trying to coin a term for this book because at a glance I would place it under the fantasy heading but personally it felt like I was reading post apocalyptic the plague with zombies the dead soldiers against a medieval setting Does that makes sense Avry is healer on the run, since the outbreak of the plague and the death of so many, healers are seen as the cause and what s worse it seems as if they decided not to heal any of the plague victims.That s beside the point though because Avry is the last healer When she s imprisoned after healing a child, things look pretty bad for her until Kerrick and his band of misfit LOL save her for a price Kerrick expects Avry to heal a dying plague Prince Ryen for his trouble and he isn t nice about itYou really have a low opinion of me, don t you No one else has backhanded me, starved me, manacled me to a tree and let me freeze each night Therefore I don t have anyone else to compare you too I loved Kerrick and Avry s banter, I mean Kerrick was pretty mean and down right cruel in the beginning but I have a weakness for these typesBut I did have a few issues, the author kind of neglected their relationship, so although it was a slow burn, any real progress between them was closer to end, making it seem rushed in my opinion Be that as it may the other characters like Belen and Flea were fantastic, I loved how they were with Avry, their camaraderie was cute, I loved how protective they were of her, especially from KerrickNo I hate you Remember I teased Couldn t possibly forget He grinnerd Just so you know, the feeling is mutual Gosh, I said with mock horror We actually have something in common Kerrick laughed Let s not let it happen againI ll definitely be continuing this series, but like Poison Study I m not itching to start the second book Scent of Magic , so I ll be reading something else But it was a good solid read. SpoilersI enjoyed Snyder s Study series and I had high expectations for this suffice to say it didn t deliver Avry is a healer, she s been running and hiding for three years as anyone found to be a healer is executed, the healers are blamed for starting a plague that killed millions of people Avry is in prison awaiting execution after it is discovered that she is a healer she s saved from death by Kerrick and his friends who want her to heal their friend who is dying of the plague Avry finds out that the friend who needs healing is Prince Ryne, someone who she refuses to heal as she believes that he is responsible for many deaths and is not worth saving Avry very reluctantly agrees to go with them to where Prince Ryne is hiding as the alternative would be death and Kerrick and his friends Belen, Flea, Loren try to convince Avry that he is worth saving On their long journey to Prince Ryne..they are encounter enemies, magicians, killer plants and zombies The world building was mediocre at best I did like that Avry suffered every time she healed someone I despised Avry s attitude, she was treated like shit and she just forgave and forgot instantly, she felt guilty and responsible for anyone who was hurt even if they had hurt her or stood by and watched her get hurt, she gave her loyalty too easily it was unbelievably frustrating Kerrick her love interest was despicable he slapped her so hard she fell down just because she said she would not heal his friend Prince Ryne, he then goes onto manacle her to tree for weeks at night and only gives her little food and no blanket as further punishment for refusing to heal his friend, he is cold and talks down to her he only starts treating her better when he realises his tactics to make her co operate are not working When he does start to get feelings for her he s not guilty or remorseful about the way he treated her he just gives a very underwhelming apology and Avry doesn t even mind his past treatment of her He s also been grieving for the past 4 years because his ex girlfriend who was the love his life dumped him for someone else Avry is basically a rebound He or less even says at the very end when they re in wuv that he would have rather saved his friend s lives than her s He s an awful hero and Avry is a crap heroine for getting involved with a man who hit her and then tortured her for weeks it s a fucked up message to be sending young readers. LOL Every little star counts Such shamelessness Okay so how weird is this I have the audio copy of TOP and it s read by Gabra Zackman, who did a fantastic job on my Study books So I wanted to listen to a couple chapters of TOP to see how Gabra did the voices and pronounced the character namesI m on Chapter 11 I ve gotten sucked into my own book how weird is that I ll blame Gabra She brings the story to life it s a different experience from reading the book as she s acting it out with the various voices and the sarcasm and I ve actually laughed out loud so strange and fun She reads Quain with a Scottish accent not quite what I d imaginedbut I ve grown used to it and now I can t hear him any other way Flea is perfect, and Kerrick s a bitoff, but I m not sure how he s supposed to sound Mom is also perfect and Belen sounds just like Poppa Bear.I m going to try and make sure Gabra reads all my books from now on A good reader makes all the difference.I finished a few days ago I really loved Tohon s voice his was so silky and dangerous And now I have all their voices in my head as I write TASTE OF DEATH book 3 On the surface, there is nothing wrong with Touch of Power Avry, a 20 year old magic healer in a world where healers are persecuted and blamed for spreading deadly plague, is a nice character She is kind, courageous, smart, strong, self sacrificing, caring, self sufficient, moral, a quick learner, a good friend you see where I am going with it Avry s adventure is fast paced, something exciting is constantly happening There is no instalove The magical system with 11 kinds of powers one of which is the healing power is fairly interesting The theme of uniting a plague torn country is good.The problem is, there is nothing below the surface of this story There is no depth to it The characters are simple and flat, their emotions and personalities are superficial, juvenile even Avry is condemned to death in the first chapter, for being a healer, and her only response to the death sentence is to shrug her shoulders and go to sleep Her calling is to heal people by taking in their pain and illnesses, and never once does she feel resentful towards this ability, she always welcomes other people s bruises, cuts, whip lashes, infections, fevers Does she enjoy pain No, this is not that sort of book, maybe unfortunately There is hardly a moment of contemplation or any complex feeling in this story Why bother with sappy stuff I guess if there is a new adventure or a game of hide and seek or a knife throwing practice just around the corner The world building is equally thin It is hard to fully grasp it, especially if you pay attention to the language that is used to describe it After finishing Touch of Power I have this vague image of a medieval land of 15 Realms, with mages, castles, princes, wooden carts and swords, but then once in a while the author would drop in a syringe, toxins, virus or president Then there is the familiar dilemma is this YA is this adult fic Avry and her love interest are in their twenties conflicts, violence and sex are of YA variety and the writing style is so simple and void of nuance it would better fit a children s book.But what bothers me the most about this novel is the whole concept of healing Avry can transfer aches and illnesses from sick people into herself Then she experiences it and heals, faster than a normal person would However, a lethal disease will kill her, just like any other person My question is, if Avry can only take away treatable illnesses, why not allow the patients heal on their own Are her sacrifices truly necessary It is probably time for me to abandon all hopes of ever reading something written by the author that is as good as Poison Study I sometimes even think that maybe that book isn t nearly as great as I remember it I would only recommend Touch of Power to Maria V Snyder s most dedicated fans and those readers who like books where stuff happens on every page, but who do not expect to grow fond of the characters, swoon at romances or be enchanted by new fantasy worlds and mythologies Everyone else, try Finnikin of the Rock instead.
When Maria V Snyder was younger, she aspired to be a storm chaser in the American Midwest so she attended Pennsylvania State University and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology Much to her chagrin, forecasting the weather wasn t in her skill set so she spent a number of years as an environmental meteorologist, which is not excitingat all Bored at work and needing a creative out
- 368 pages
- Touch of Power
- Maria V. Snyder
- 03 March 2019 Maria V. Snyder