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    Posted by: Ember Blue Posted date: 7:10 AM / comment : 0


    When doing a series review, I will give you the basic information for all books in the series.  To keep from spoiling, I will only give the blurb as the first book as well as give just a ‘general’ review of the series as a whole without any specifics.  Enjoy!



     

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46202.Magic_Study








     
     
    Description:
    About to be executed for murder, Yelena is offered an extraordinary reprieve. She'll eat the best meals, have rooms in the palace—and risk assassination by anyone trying to kill the Commander of Ixia.

    And so Yelena chooses to become a food taster. But the chief of security, leaving nothing to chance, deliberately feeds her Butterfly's Dust—and only by appearing for her daily antidote will she delay an agonizing death from the poison.

    As Yelena tries to escape her new dilemma, disasters keep mounting. Rebels plot to seize Ixia and Yelena develops magical powers she can't control. Her life is threatened again and choices must be made. But this time the outcomes aren't so clear...
     
    Positives:
    -The fantastical medieval-type world is mostly consistent through the books.
    -The need to find out the secrets the author keeps from you leads you to not be able to put the book down.  It’s almost delicious frustration.
    -The main characters – Yelena and Valek – are very well developed.  You grow along with Yelena and become very attached to Valek.
    -All three of the trilogy shares a consistent story that doesn’t seem unconnected.  Some series seem to pop some random plot that hadn’t been hinted at and didn’t feel like it added to the flow of the story.  This series feels like a complete present wrapped very well.
    -With a hefty amount of supporting characters, you fall in love with a lot of them.  They are that well developed.
     
    Negatives:
    -The first book is utterly amazing.  I finished it in one night.  It is possibly one of the best books I’ve read in the genre.  The last two books are very good, but they just don’t reach the same top note as the first book.
    -In the last book, some of the phrases used in conversations by the characters are well-known quips that we say.  They seem a bit out of place in their world.
    -One of the characters that you absolutely love (I’m not telling who) is too absent in the last two books.  I found myself not just hungering for the connection the character had with other characters, but for learning more and more about the character.  I ended the series feeling like I still wanted to know about the character’s past.
     
    Overview:
     This will forever be one of my favorite series.  The first book was astounding.  The buildup of the characters and the connection between Yelena and Valek – just awesome.  The plot continues to add more and more to the story that connect as if you are solving a puzzle.  It’s romance, mystery, fantasy, adventure, and magical all in one, with no one thing taking a role larger than the other.  I appreciate that quite a bit.  So many authors really depend on the romance to keep the plot going, but the author doesn’t have to do that.  Yelena’s character and history, her growth, learning more of the mystery surrounding her life along with her, feeling the realistic relationship growing between Valek and Yelena, and well-built friendships has made me love this author.  I hate it when authors bring friends in for the character and they are either boring or are left out of the story.  Although I –love- romance, I need more than that.
    I can’t speak more to the wonderfully built and thought out characters in this book.  With so many, some authors seem to overwhelm you or give you lack-luster supporting characters, but not in this series.  I found myself growing attached not just to the main characters, but to others as well.  This isn’t too much of a spoiler, so I’ll share it – Yelena befriends a horse through the series.  That horse becomes one of my favorite things in the series.  It is real talent when an author can make you dedicated to not just the main characters, but the lives of all the characters as a whole.
    As for the romance.  Oh my gosh.  I could NOT stop reading the first book.  It wasn’t too much and it didn’t seem fake.  It built up naturally and I wondered throughout the book if they would get together.  Sometimes authors make it so plain that the love interest of the main character has feelings for them, but the first book had me guessing his intentions.  You have to wait for a while, but it is well worth it.  I found myself wanting to see more of more of them together, and not just for the gushy swooning.  They seemed to strengthen each other and the moments with action seemed more fulfilling.  The one downside is that I wish I could have seem more of them plotting and fighting together.
    I’ll be honest, the story does slow down a bit in the second book and into the first half of the third.  I still got through them rather quickly, but definitely not at the speed I usually do.  This was a bit disappointing after the awesomeness that was the first book, but the plot still had me wondering and reading more.  It takes a bit more time to build up the connections between characters in the second book because you were so linked with ones from the first book.  I wanted to finish the series before I started a new book, and sadly that made me not get the book review out as soon as I wished.  Overall, though, this series is a must read.  It’s a bit of an older series, but the blurb always stuck in my mind.
     
    Rating:
     
    Book #1 –
     
    Book #2 –
     
    Book #3 –
     
    Series overall – 4.5 wands
     
    Recommended to:
    -High fantasy lovers!
    -Those that enjoy a realistic romance that seems to go from hate/irritation to passion/love.
    -This book feels a bit like historical fiction, so those who enjoy that genre would love it as well.
     
    Not Recommended to:
    -Those who can’t stick it out a bit through the slow parts to get to another period of awesomeness.
    -Those that need heavy romance throughout the entire series that has the characters together for most of the series.
     
     
     
     

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