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Magic Study | [Maria V. Snyder]

Magic Study

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 newfound friends and relatives don't think it's for the better....
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Publisher's Summary

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 newfound 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.

Magic Study is the sequel to Poison Study and our Editors' Pick for Romance. Find out what else made Audible's Best of 2006 list.

©2006 Maria V. Snyder; (P)2006 Audible, Inc.
All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. This edition is published by arrangement with Harlequin Books S.A. All characters in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

What the Critics Say

"Family betrayal, a power-mad serial killer, and a potential diplomatic crisis threaten the independent-minded heroine of Snyder's fine sequel to Poison Study....Snyder's lively, charming mix of romance and fantasy is sure to gain her new fans." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1790 )
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4.3 (838 )
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4.4 (828 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Bruce Knoxville, MD, United States 03-22-08
    Bruce Knoxville, MD, United States 03-22-08 Member Since 2007

    Poet, Writer, Novice Planetary Scientist, Musician, Hooligan, Former Audience Guy, Protector of Stupid Princesses.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    383
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    104
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    Overall
    "This in number 2 in a series."

    I enjoyed this book very much. I really wish audible would clearly post the order of books that are in a series (above the fold on the web page.) It is currently difficult to figure out the right order based only on the "more by the same author" and release date.

    In my opinion, even books in a series should be independent of each other, and this one didn't give me enough background to get oriented for quite a while. Otherwise I have no complaints.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angel Greenville, NC, USA 12-16-07
    Angel Greenville, NC, USA 12-16-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    117
    6
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    "Surprisingly Good!"

    Very good story- the characters were constantly evolving as events progressed. Although I felt at times that everyone seemed to be extremely stubborn and that a lot of their choices were very selfish, I guess that's not that different than in real life. At times the novel was fairly bloody & graphic when it came to injuries and rape but I'm still interested in hearing the first book and the end of the trilogy.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AudioAddict 11-15-13
    AudioAddict 11-15-13

    I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    706
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    "Pretty good, but I'm done with this series"

    STORY - (fantasy) - Magic Study is Book 2 of the Soulfinders series. It picks up where Poison Study left off, so Yelena has moved from Ixia to Citia to reunite with her family and study magic. It has some violence, a bit of romance and lots of new characters. Her study of magic is interesting and the plot moves quickly, but I don't think it's anywhere near as good as Poison Study.

    The book could probably stand alone, but you really should listen to them in order. It ends at a good stopping point, should you decide not to continue with the series.

    PERFORMANCE - Very good job with multiple voices and accents. I didn't care for Yelena communicating mentally with her horse but, nevertheless, the narrator does a pretty good "horse voice."

    OVERALL - Read Poison Study first. If you like it, then you might give this one a try as well. It wasn't a bad book, just not my cup of tea.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. L. Barber 06-27-15 Member Since 2012
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    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "Finally! YA author who can actually WRITE!"
    If you could sum up Magic Study in three words, what would they be?

    Captivating, Suspenseful, Creative


    What other book might you compare Magic Study to and why?

    Throne of Glass. Also very well written with an interesting story. There are so many YA stories popping up in the fantastical fiction (or sci-fi or after we tried to kill ourselves) genre that it takes an excellent writer along with an excellent story. Or you have to repetitively sex it up.


    What does Gabra Zackman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The narrator character's perspective. How she see her world. She has a realistic idea about things. Also, the non-human characters...well, that was just pretty darned cute!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes! and Yes! It is one of those books where should you go to bed listening to it...you may find it many hours later before you fall asleep. I suggest rewinding several chapters to fall asleep to or you won't!


    Any additional comments?

    I really really root for the main character and the one who has her heart (not to mention impossible not to imagine super sexy!). Can't wait to listen to Book 3 of Soulfinders. Oh, I almost forgot...there isn't all that "I did this bad thing to you but you have to stay with me" or "how can I not make the other person not do this negative thing" or any of that other lack of self-respect crap.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A Voracious Reader NC, USA 05-27-15
    A Voracious Reader NC, USA 05-27-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "Great addition to series"

    4.5

    *Book source ~ Purchased from Audible

    Guest Reviewers
    A ~ My 17-yr-old daughter
    T ~ My 15-yr-old son
    K ~ My 14-yr-old son

    Yelena has vanquished her enemies and is on her way to Sitia to meet the family she doesn’t remember and learn how to control her magic. But growing up in Ixia and being the Commander’s food taster has made her ways strange and suspicious to the people of Sitia. Still, she perseveres. However, soon she is embroiled in a bad situation and must use her newfound abilities, her new friends and the unexpected arrival of old friends to get ahead of the game. And stay alive. Will her life ever be simple?

    While not as rousing as the first book, this story has a decent plot with a new world, new enemies, new friends and an appearance of old friends. Everyone still likes Yelena and Valek is still a favorite. Though T said Yelena and Valek having sex all the time is bad. I had to laugh because they aren’t doing it like bunnies. In fact, it’s closed door, not described at all and it’s only a few times. It’s just the fact that when Valek is around they do what couples in love do especially since they’ve been separated for months, but it’s not to the detriment of the plot. LOL Anyway, the magic is fascinating and the Sitia world is interesting. We all loved having the Power Twins back for a bit and the addition of horses is cool. T & K love that the horses call Valek “Ghost.” An apt name indeed. No one likes Yelena’s brother Leif. I agree that he’s an azz though by the end of the book he’s a bit better. T likes Yelena’s dad Esau because he knows so much cool stuff about the jungle. And everyone wants Cahil to die. That would be nice. We’re looking forward to book 3, Fire Study.

    Favorite quotes:

    “Pushing magic toward the candle, I willed it to light. Nothing happened.
    Irys made a strangled sound and the candle burned. “Are you directing your magic to the candle?”
    “Yes. Why?”
    “You just ordered me to light the candle for you,” Irys said in exasperation. “And I did it.”
    ********************************************************************************
    “I gave him a bored look. I had been threatened many times before and had learned that the men who didn’t make verbal threats were the most dangerous.”
    ******************************************************************************
    “Of course, you didn't want our help. Now I have to go beat up some soldier just to keep my ego intact.”

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Zachary 05-18-15
    Zachary 05-18-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "A Fun, Frantic, and Frustrating Listen"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would conditionally recommend this book to friends who want an easy read but are willing to overlook some bumps along the way. Despite plot and character issues, the book does a good job expanding the world introduced in the previous novel as well as exploring the magic system Snyder has created.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I find details about the magic system the most interesting.


    Which character – as performed by Gabra Zackman – was your favorite?

    My favorite character would have to be Irys, the 4th Magician. She was an interesting character in the previous novel when she turned from enemy to ally, but in this novel her role as mentor is expanded and tested. I wish her role in the novel had been expanded, as well as her relationship with Yelena, but it was kind of put to the side in the third act while Yelena ran around doing her own thing and being saved by Valek.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I didn't have any extreme reactions other than occasionally rolling my eyes or letting out sighs of frustration at Yelena's actions.


    Any additional comments?

    I felt like the novel struggled trying to balance too many simultaneous plot threads, with the result that a lot of potential was lost in character arcs. Yelena seems to move from plot point to plot point, either rushing in for seemingly no reason, or else being kidnapped (seriously, she gets kidnapped at least four times). Although by the end of the book there seems to be an acknowledgement of her recklessness and growth in her relationships with her family, the change happens too rapidly, which is odd considering how jam packed the novel is.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Caitlynne Scagel 04-22-15 Member Since 2015
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    5
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    "Amazing!!"

    A compelling and thrilling novel of a woman's journey to find herself, he place, and her family. A real page turner and I was unable to stop listening to it! onto the next!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Foolartist USA 03-15-15
    Foolartist USA 03-15-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Great book, great series, favorite author!"

    I love this series in print but the narrator brings it so much life. They're small parts but I love the way she does Valik. Even if, obviously, I pictured a deeper voice originally, I love how she says, "Anything, Love." I don't know it's just perfect. If you haven't read Poison Study this is a series that Must be read in order. But you must read them, they're fabulous!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alicia BALTIMORE, MD, United States 02-03-15
    Alicia BALTIMORE, MD, United States 02-03-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A stunning sequel full of magic, lies, betrayals"
    If you could sum up Magic Study in three words, what would they be?

    4.5 Stars

    MAGIC STUDY was a spiraling world of magic, love, survival, determination, all weaved around the magical elements of danger, betrayal, drama, lies, and murder...

    MAGIC STUDY was just about everything I hoped for, almost... This book was so much fun and introduced a whole new world to this series that I couldn't get enough of.

    But the downside to MAGIC STUDY was that I wanted, no, NEED, more of VALEK!! He didn't show up until more then halfway though the book, then when we did, he wasn't there a lot. And that drove me CRAZY. Granted, it all still played out amazing, and had twist and turns that I loved, but I would of enjoyed them a lot more if Valek was there through most of them! ;)

    Another small issue I had was that in POISON STUDY Yelena and Valek didn't act on they're feelings until almost the end of the book, but when they finally did express they're true feelings for each other, it felt rushed and not as developed as I hoped for. But in a way it was understandable because they were in a dire situation where they weren't able to fully express their-selves.

    But in MAGIC STUDY, it still didn't really develop the way I wanted. They just picked up with how much they loved each other, but not a lot of talking about their feelings. Really, every time they got together they hardly even talked at all. And that drove me INSANE!!! I LOVE them as a couple. I think they're both awesome characters, and are well developed, but their relationship is not. I know they love each other, I mean it's definitely obvious. Because in POISON STUDY they're feelings built up from the beginning to almost the end, and had plenty of time for those feelings to progress and truly blossom into the love that they have for each other. But once they got together, I wanted more feelings, more talk, more togetherness, MORE OF THEM!! I don't know if that makes any sense, but nevertheless, I LOVE them together and apart, I just wish they had more time together to develop their feels for each other.

    That aside, the rest of the book was AMAZING!! I loved all the new and old characters that came into play in MAGIC STUDY, and the direction that the plot took. I loved all the magic and adventure, and meeting Yelena's family, and the strong bonds and allies she built. And the new enemies she established in Sitia. I would of liked to visit Ixia again, but that's okay I'm sure we will in the next book, FIRE STUDY!

    THE PLOT

    Yelena has left Ixia behind, forced to flea or face execution from the Commander for being a magician and having the power of magic pulse through her veins. She's eager, but nervous about returning to her homeland of Sitia, where she will learn how to wield her magic and reunite with her long-lost-family that she was stolen from all those years ago. But Yelena realizes very quickly that not everyone is willing to accept her with open arms in the magical city. Some think she has ulterior motives, some are even willing to kill her for it...

    Now in Sitia and no longer forced to shield her powers, Yelena is able to let go and let free. But Yelena magic is stronger then she or her magician teacher and closet friend Iris, ever thought. Some are even threatened by her and the power she possesses, which happens to be progressing and becoming stronger with each passing day.

    But the power is not the problem, she has an enormous power within, what she is struggling with is the control. With her power quickly strengthening at alarming rate, and her displaying unique powers that were once feared, it makes grasping and controlling all this power unsteady and very dangerous. Yelena must learn to wield and control her magic quickly if she has any chance of surviving her homecoming to Sitia.

    Theirs a powerful magician stealing the souls of lesser magicians and claiming their magic for themselves. And if they're not stopped, not only will innocent lives be lost, but all of Sitia will fall under the control of the Soul Stealers power. Once the Soul Stealer claims enough souls and magical powers, he will be nearly unstoppable...

    With Yelena's strengthening power, and her unique abilities, she may be the only one equipped enough to stop the Soul Stealer before all of the Country plunges into darkness and evil...

    Yelena will have to dig deep within to discover who she really is and what she's actually capable of to complete the mission she's set out for. But she's unequipped to go at it alone. She must call on some old friends, including her most strongest ally of all, Valek, and build bonds with new allies in her hometown country of Sitia if she has any chance at stopping this madman before it's too late. But every step she takes seems like their is always someone there trying to keep her from conquering her goal. She will have to be prepared to face all, and determined to overcome the unthinkable if she's going to defeat the evil threatening to claim the country she's grown to love.

    MAGIC STUDY was almost as good as I hoped for, minus the issue I had with the relationship development, it was perfect! I only knocked a half of star off my rating for the lack of development in Yelena and Valek's relationship. BUT... I STILL LOVED THEM BOTH. No matter how much time they spent together or apart and how deep they're feelings were talked about with each other. I still enjoyed their time together and can't wait to see them reunite again in FIRE STUDY!!

    Overall, MAGIC STUDY was a magically alluring, and utterly addicting read from beginning to end. Maria V. Snyder captured my heart in POISON STUDY, and owned it with MAGIC STUDY, and I'm sure FIRE STUDY will be the link that ties them all together and completes my heart as whole.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily 01-21-15
    Emily 01-21-15 Member Since 2008
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    "One of my all time favorites"

    This book is amazing. The author is one of the crazy good writers that keeps you guessing until the end of the book. I love the narrator. She keeps you listen and give the story the sense of reality that make this series one of my favorite rereads.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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