SPOILERS!!! Shadow Study – Maria V Snyder

Once, only her own life hung in the balance…

When Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. She 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, dissent is rising. And Valek’s job—and his life—are in danger.
As Yelena tries to uncover her enemies, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked.And now she must find a way to keep not only herself but all that she holds dear alive.


Goodreads rating: ✮✮✮✮ (4.09 stars)

My rating: ✮✮✮ (3 stars)

I’ve read the poison study series pretty much one after the other, and I was excited to get back to Yelena and Valek. After the break that Snyder took, and only writing more Yelena and Valek because her fans wanted her to, I felt like the characters I had known to love had somehow changed.

This book includes perspectives from Valek and Janco, as well as Yelena, and where I would normally enjoy reading from their perspectives, I felt like the characters had somehow changed. They appeared different from what they were in the Study trilogy. I don’t know if this is because I didn’t return to the Soulfinder trilogy after a break, or whether my interpretations of the characters were different, but something was a bit…off. Janco was everything I imagined him to be, however Valek had somehow lost his “I am a big bad assassin” persona, and had become more…regular. Maybe I just loved the harsher side of him than this softer side. -WINK WINK- I am interested in reading about Valek’s past, and how he became the man he is.

Let’s get down to the story, which centres on Yelena losing her magic, and Valek potentially losing his job as the Commanders assassin. This is full of lots of action, and what Snyder is all about. An event is mentioned that hasn’t been included before, which involves characters called Ben Moon and Owen Moon. However, the events which involve this pair is explained somewhat throughout the book, as well as in the second book.

I spoiled myself pretty early on in the book, as I may have accidentally flicked to the last page, checking how many pages were in the book, and found out Yelena thought she was pregnant. I am, however, glad that the idea of pregnancy and periods are brought up, as well as her thoughts about pregnancy. She wasn’t too thrilled about the idea of being pregnant and I liked how Snyder included the pros and the cons.

I am interested in how the relationship between Sitia and Ixia is going to turn out. I sense that this trilogy will have a lot of twists and turns in, and I am excited to be diving into Night Study. Will Yelena be Pregnant, or is it just stress? Stay tuned to find out!


You can find this book on goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16130758-shadow-study

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