Title: Magic Study
Author: Maria V Snyder
Published: October 2006 by Luna
Description: Yelena is a survivor. Kidnapped as a child, held prisoner as a teen, then released to act as a poison taster, she is now a student of magic. But these magic skills place her in imminent danger, and with an execution order on her head, she has no choice but to escape to Sitia, the land of her birth.
But nothing in Sitia is familiar. As she struggles to understand where she belongs and how to control her powers, a rogue magician emerges and Yelena catches his eye. Suddenly she is embroiled in a situation not of her making. And once again her magical abilities will either save her life or be her downfall.
With her greatest enemy dead, and on her way to be reunited with the family she'd been stolen from long ago, Yelena should be pleased. But though she has gained her freedom, she can't help feeling isolated in Sitia. Her Ixian background has changed her in many ways and her new-found friends and relatives don't think it's for the better.
Despite the turmoil, she's eager to start her magic training especially as she's been given one year to harness her power or be put to death. 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 all her new enemies.
I Give This Book 4 Stars!
I am happy to say I loved this book almost as much as the first. Now, I want you to note that it's only a half star difference...so not much. I loved reading about Yelena's home land, and her struggle to find her place in it. All my favorite characters from book one make an appearance in this book, and some new ones added. I didn't like Leif at first, but he grew on me. He's got some heavy baggage to bear and it's very evident in his dealing with Yelena. I particularly loved The Moon Man. I don't know if the author intended for him to be so humorous, or if it was just the way I read it. I also really enjoyed Yelena's new found connection with the horses (probably because I have a special fondness for them as well). The book was fast paced and I loved every minute of it. So why did I like it slightly less than the first? Honestly, I don't think I could put my finger on it. Poison Study just had something extra.