Author: Maria V. Snyder
Series: 2nd (Touch of Power)
Published: December 18th 2012 by Harlequin MIRA
Source: Publisher via Netgalley
Description: As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avry of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avry is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle. Though she should be in hiding, Avry will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat. War is coming and Avry is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible ... again.
I Give This ...
I adore Maria Snyder's work. My favorite is still her Poison Study series, but Touch of Power really struck a cord with me and was similar in so many ways. Since Maria is on my must read list, it was a no-brainer that I would be reading this one.
I love how take charge Avry is in this book. She readily makes decisions for herself and follows through with them. I never felt like she made any hasty decisions. Some wrong ones yes, but always in the hope to get to the bottom of things and find answers. I also love that fact that its obvious she loves Kerrick (and he loves her), but their feelings for each other do not get in the way of what they both feel they have to do. I was intrigued by Avry's thoughts on the Peace and Death Lilly's. Everytime she lets one of the flowers take her, I always hold my breathe a little bit that it might be the time that they don't let her go. I found that theory that the flowers are attracted to the potential of magic to be particularly fascinating because it plays such a huge surprising role in this book.
The story isn't particularly fast paced, but it's action packed. There are so many different things going on. Avry is busy with undercover work in Estrid's Army. I love that she teaches them how to move through the woods just like Kierran taught her to do. Kierran is trying to stop a vicious northern tribe from annihilating his homeland. But to do that, he has to go home to the people and family he's left behind. And while a lot of his story seems to just complication the plot, I wonder the greater purpose. Especially the tribe...I think they might come in handy in the future.
I'm most curious what King Tohon's next move is. I know what he wants, but he seems to be playing around at getting it. Although what he did with his undead army was just awesome. I want to see how this can all possibly wrap up in the next book...