PJV Quickie: It took me forever to write this review. There is a reason. It’s not a bad reason. The book wasn’t bad. The story wasn’t off. Well…it was me. The story brings back Yelena and Valek, one of my top couples that I enjoy to read about. The problem arises, because they aren’t really a couple in the book. They are doing their own thing, there is a lot of strife, a lot of political intrigue and as a fan of the couple – it hurt to read it. I understand that we should be excited that Yelena and Valek have another series…but unfortunately it just fell flat for me.

Review: Here comes the bad analogy.

The hero and the heroine face adversity, but in the end they triumph, kiss and declare their undying love. The camera fades to black and we can imagine them in their happy world. We can go to sleep that night, knowing they lived happily ever after.

We can imagine their life together is perfect. They have no more strife. They retired. They live in a little cabin. On a lake. They have tons of babies.

The author doesn’t succumb to fan pressure, yank them out of their cabin, force them to come back into the strife and write a new story, which almost kills them a few times, keeps them a part most of the story and ruins the happily ever after I had in my mind. OMG.  I’m sorry. I digress into my madness. But, it’s true.

Yelena and Valek are one of my top favorite couples. TOP. Like up there with Mac and Barrons. AND DON’T GET ME STARTED ON BURNED. I can’t write that damned review either!!!!

And here I sit. Frustrated. Because I read this and now it’s all screwed up in my head. Valek flashbacks, Yelena all over the place. My sad, fangirl tears.

If this was my first book that featured Yelena and Valek, I would think it was interesting. I would have liked the story. But, because I EXPECTED so much more. SOOO much more. This was like pulling teeth. Me. Totally me. But, really…I expected so much more.

Recommendations: Ok, if you are a fan, you’ll probably do it. Hopefully you are just excited enough to read from Yelena and Valek’s POV to shake it off.

About the book

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Shadow Study by Maria V. Snyder

Shadow Study by Maria V. Snyder

Series: Soulfinders #1
Published by MIRA on February 24th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction
Pages: 416
Also by this author: Inside Out, Touch of Power, Shadow Study
3 Stars

New York Times bestselling author Maria V. Snyder wowed readers with Poison Study, the unforgettable story of poison taster Yelena. Now she's back with a new tale of intrigue. 

Once, only her own life hung in the balance…

Oddly enough, when Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. But she'd survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia. Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands—and protect her relationship with Valek.

Suddenly, though, they are beset on all sides by those vying for power through politics and intrigue. Valek's job and his life are in danger. As Yelena tries to uncover the scope of these plots, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. She must keep that a secret—or her enemies will discover just how vulnerable she really is—while searching for who or what is responsible for neutralizing her powers.

Yes, the days of tasting poisons were much simpler. And certainly not as dangerous…




About the Author

About Maria V. Snyder

Maria V. Snyder changed from being a meteorologist to a novelist in 1995, when she began writing to keep her sanity while raising two children. Since then, she has published numerous freelance articles in magazines and newspapers, and teaches fiction-writing classes at the local college and area libraries. The classes give her the wonderful opportunity to encourage fellow writers, and to keep improving her craft.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maria always had a fascination with big storms. Dreaming of chasing tornados, Maria earned a bachelors of science degree in meteorology at Penn State University. But she discovered, much to her chagrin, that forecasting the weather wasn't one of her skills. In order to chase tornados you had to predict where they might form. Creating fantasy worlds where she has complete control of the weather was more agreeable to her.

Maria's research on food-tasting methods with an expert chocolate taster, her husband, turned out to be a delicious bonus while writing Poison Study.

Maria has a brown belt in Isshinryu Karate, and enjoys playing volleyball and the cello. Traveling in general and via cruise ship in particular are her biggest distractions from writing. Maria has traveled to Belize, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and through the Panama Canal.

Maria lives with her husband, son, daughter and yellow lab, Hazelnut, in Pennsylvania where she is at work on more LUNA novels. She is also pursuing a master's degree in writing popular fiction from Seton Hill University.

Readers are welcome to contact Maria at the following email address:maria@mariavsnyder.com.