Friday, 30 September 2016

Touch of Power by Maria V Snyder

Title: Touch of Power
Series: Avry of Kazan (#1)
Author: Maria V Snyder
From: Amazon
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 20th December 2011
Challenges: 2016 Read the Books You Buy
Links: Goodreads - Amazon
Synopsis (from Goodreads): Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan assumes their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honoured for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Territories, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos. Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince, the leader of a campaign against her people. As they traverse the daunting Nine Mountains, beset by mercenaries and magical dangers, Avry must decide who is worth healing and what is worth dying for.

Having read and enjoyed the first three books in Snyders Chronicles of Ixia series (along with the short stories!) I didn't quite feel that I'd had my fix yet, and I am definitely in a fantasy mood at the moment, so I dived into this one, and honestly I think its even better than the Study books! 

I loved Avry, she'd survived on her own for years and just because she'd found people she could let know who she really was, she didn't let anything slip. She worked at surviving still, and even though you could read her beginning to trust the people around her, and grow attached to them, she was still strong and independent. 

The growing relationships between Avry and the various memebers of the group she was travelling with were a really strong part of the story to me. She built friendships with Loren, Quain, Flea and Belen, while her relationship with Kerrick was so complicated it just can't be summed up in words (but I would say that the events at the end of the book were perfect for these two). 

I liked that things weren't quite black and white for Avry and the rest of the world either. A plague had decemated the population and law and order were definitely a thing of the past. She was asked to heal someone who she had heard had done terrible things, and some of the central conversations were based on Kerrick and the others trying to change her mind. It was complex and made the characters themselves more complex as a result. 

The other thing that I really liked was that the main character actually got to know the main antagonist (who I suspect will play a future role too) better than just as an adversary. Avry spent time with the main bad guy and it made his actions seem that bit more chilling. 

I loved this book, and book 2 is already on my kindle so it shouldn't be long until I dig into that one! Or at least I hope not!

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