Fire Study (Study #3, Chronicles of Ixia #3)
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Publication: August 15th, 2012
Publisher: Mira Books
Format: Kindle Edition, 448 pages
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy, Paranormal
Read: January 2016
The Apprenticeship is Over. Now the Real Test has Begun.
When word that Yelena is a Soulfinder able to capture and release souls spreads like wildfire, people grow uneasy. Already Yelena’s unusual abilities and past have set her apart. As the Council debates Yelena’s fate, she receives a disturbing message: a plot is rising against her homeland, led by a murderous sorcerer she has defeated before .
Honor sets Yelena on a path that will test the limits of her skills, and the hope of reuniting with her beloved spurs her onward. Her journey is fraught with allies, enemies, lovers and would-be assassins, each of questionable loyalty. Yelena will have but one chance to prove herself and save the land she holds dear.
Plot – 5 out of 5 stars
I loved how Maria does plot. It’s always extremely fast and full of action packed adventures and magic. It’s full of tension and overloaded with dangerous situations that keep you on your toes. There’s suspense and intrigue and it makes you want to completely devour the pages to find out what is really going on and how everything will turn out.
Writing Style – 4 out of 5 stars
I am a huge fan of her writing style because I feel like it lends really well to the type of plot that she creates. It’s very straight forward yet simple. There’s a lot of explanations and descriptions but they don’t overwhelm you in a way that makes it feel like an info dump. It feels a lot like the main character is speaking out her situation so it’s dry and sarcastic and has a great displacement when it comes to all the different elements. Totally addicting and I want more.
Characters – 5 out of 5 stars
Hands down, one of my favorite parts of this entire trilogy are the characters. Yelena is my absolute favorite female character of all time. She’s opinionated and kind and smart (most of the time) and totally kick ass. But at the same time, she’s stubborn and wayy too independent so that sometimes it gets in her way instead of helps her. She’s very powerful but she was a little on the annoying side in this installment because she was just so fixated on doing everything on her own when it was completely unnecessary. Having said that, I loved her character development, not only in this book but the entire trilogy and I adore her with all my heart. All of the amazing, complex and intriguing supporting characters that appeared in the series are in this book and it made me so happy to meet old friends. It was also great to get to know some of them a little bit better, specially Opal who is the protagonist to the Glass trilogy which is a companion to these books. It was really bittersweet to get to the end of this particular journey with them but I can’t wait until I can read the Soulfinder trilogy and see more of Yelena.
This was one of the most exciting finales I have ever read and I’m already feeling so nostalgic over this trilogy.
The plot is intense. The villain who was captured at the end of the last book escaped and is getting help to cause havoc all over Sitita. Yelena is doing everything in her power to stop but everyone is wary of her thanks to the reveal of her real power and what it does. There is so much going on in this book which I’ve become accustomed to with this series. There are always a million different threads in the plot and you’re with the characters in the race to figure out what the hell is going on but it just makes it that much more exciting. There’s a new group of magicians who’ve gone to the dark side and are doing blood rituals to become more powerful. The Council is working to determine Yelena’s fate: is her magic too powerful to be accepted or can she be an asset to Sitia? And with all of those things, Yelena is still trying to figure out what she can and can’t do with her magic, how to control and how to make sure she doesn’t harm anyone by accident. And that’s not all there is either! There’s a lot of action and traveling through Sitia and it’s a great way to see more of the world and how all the clans are. Because there are so many different facets to the entire plot, it can get a bit confusing but if you’ve read the first books, it’s easy to get back into the same rhythm again. There’s a lot of suspense and so many twists and turns that keep you on your toes and begging for more. SO GOOD.
Yelena annoyed me a bit in this installment. I’m used to her being incredibly independent and stubborn but not to the point where it ends up harming her and what she is trying to do to help people. But in this book that is exactly what happened. She was so stubborn that she got in her own way and wouldn’t let other people help her, even the ones she trusts more than anything. It made things so much more complicated when they already were that way and it’s frustrating to witness and not be able to shake her to get her out of it. Considering how powerful she really is, there were some things that escaped her notice and I expected her to be quicker on her feet and more cunning like she had been in the previous books. But considering all she’s been through in the short amount of time the books talk about, it makes a lot of sense. Still this amazing woman manages to save the day with the greatest and coolest idea in the world and it was really interesting to see how everything was resolved in the end.
I absolutely loved seeing a lot of the old characters come back around for this installment. Kiki is the best animal I have ever read about in a book, I adore her. Leif is quite hilarious and I liked that we got to know him little by little as him and Yelena built their sibling relationship. Valek is… well Valek. You have to love him, there’s no other possibility. Aro and Janco are some of the best side kicks/not really side kicks in a book and their relationships in really funny and entertaining. Opal is still kind of an enigma but I am interested in getting to know her powers and personality more. Something I always have to mention for this series is that romance is present, but it’s not an in your face all the time kind of thing. It’s quiet, deep and powerful and honest and while the development is a lot slower due to them being separated most of the time, Valek and Yelena are my ultimate OTP.
So that’s it for this review! Let me know if you’ve picked up this series yet. If you haven’t, why not?! Make sure to check out the reviews I have for the first two books because they are just as amazing. Thanks so much for reading and I’ll see you on my next post!