Dawn Study (Soulfinders #3, Study #6, The Chronicles of Ixia #9)
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Publication: January 31st, 2017
Publisher: Mira Books
Format: Kindle Edition, 478 pages
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy, Paranormal
Read: February 2017
New York Times bestselling author Maria V. Snyder brings her Poison Study series to its exhilarating conclusion.
Despite the odds, Yelena and Valek have forged an irrevocable bond and a family that transcends borders. Now, when their two homelands stand on the brink of war, they must fight with magic and cunning to thwart an Ixian plot to invade Sitia.
Yelena seeks to break the hold of the insidious Theobroma that destroys a person’s resistance to magical persuasion. But the Cartel is determined to keep influential citizens and Sitian diplomats in thrall and Yelena at bay. With every bounty hunter after her, Yelena is forced to make a dangerous deal.
With might and magic, Valek peels back the layers of betrayal surrounding the Commander. At its rotten core lies a powerful magician and his latest discovery. The fate of all rests upon two unlikely weapons. One may turn the tide. The other could spell the end of everything.
Plot – 4.5 out of 5 stars
I am running out of things to say about these books because you all know that I absolutely love this entire series. This book is just as action packed and full of suspense and drama and mystery. All the pieces that have been floating around since the beginning finally begin to fit together and spread. There’s danger and intrigue. The climax itself was kind of disappointing but the ending was really sweet and it gave me all the feels.
Writing Style – 4 out of 5 stars
Again, not really sure what more to say. The writing style for these books is always really engaging and addicting, it’s very easy and fast to read through. There are several points of views throughout the book and they all feel very distinct and unique to each person. The story is fast paced, intricate and full of description and detailed.
Characters – 5 out of 5 stars
I love and adore every single freaking character that is in this single book. This is the ninth book in the general series and this book has almost every character that has ever been on page with dialogue in the rest of the series in this book and it was amazing to be able to have them all together.
Yelena is one of my favorite characters of all time and it was great to have a whole new adventure with her. She’s smart and determined. She’s really protective and I love her devotion to the safety of her loved ones. She’s in a very special state throughout this whole book and it was quite terrifying because it was dangerous for her, more than it’s ever been. But I also love getting to see more of these characters and their lives and how they’ve grown as people. They feel real because I’ve seen them since their very humble beginnings.
Valek is one of my favorites of this particular series. I’ve always loved him but as a partner to Yelena and in this series and in this book as well, I got to see more of his personality. He’s much more emotional and accepting. His personal growth was astounding. Janco is great because he’s the most lighthearted of all the points of views and I really liked seeing his perspective on the things that were going on. Leif’s narrative tends to be focused on his wife and family and his feelings on protectiveness of them. There’s a new small point of view in this book and that’s Heli, who was an important side character in the Glass trilogy. She’s really smart, kind and sweet and I liked seeing the little bit of her perspective that we got.
I’m so sad that this series is over but I loved this finale even if the climax of this particular story was a bit of a let down and disappointment.
The plot is full of information. We follow our huge, eclectic cast of characters in their last efforts to save both countries from war. There were a lot of things that were left up in the air in the last book and I just wanted this final book to wrap up well. There were a lot of different plot lines and things happening at the same time and they all began to move quicker and more and more characters from previous books started to show up to help with the cause. Slowly but surely, everyone started getting together and being in the same place, which is kind of important when you’re trying to save the world, and it was so much fun to see all the different dynamics together. There was still action and suspense in this book but since it was the finale, it wasn’t as intense. There were still twists and turns that kept the reader guessing as the story goes, but they’re not as detrimental to the cause as the ones in the previous books were. It made the story dynamic but it didn’t have the same urgency as the other books do which is okay but I would’ve wanted a little bit more of the mystery and drama that is usually a part of this series because it’s what made me fall in love with it in the first place. I was expecting and kind of wanting a big battle scene, a climax that is really intense and powerful, so it was a bit disappointing to see how easy things were wrapped up in terms of the conflict. First of all it only took a one on one battle for everything to be called off and it just seemed… too easy? After everything they had to go through to find out what was going on and how many people were really involved and how everything started, I expected the struggle of winning to be much harder and worth all of the effort they point into the fight in the first place. Even in this book which is the finale, they were still getting new information about players in the enemy side, and their weapons and what they were hoping to really accomplish with everything they were doing. I feel like it kind of cheapened the work that all the amazing cast members did to fight them by making it a one on one face off that ends amicably and then that’s it I guess haha. However, there’s a really awesome moment that I loved, a brand new addition to the amazing group of characters that this series already has and it was so beautiful and heartwarming. I love what that moment meant to the two main characters and the change it brings to their lives. Honestly, now I just really want various spin off series from the next generation characters, the young ones that stole my heart in these last few books that need to take the lead and shine on their own!
Yelena and Valek are my favorite couple ever. They are the OTP of OTPs haha. I have been rooting for them since 8th grade where I read Poison Study once and never forgot it and was obsessed with it until I re-read it in 2015. They have a true and honest partnership. They have a very adult relationship which I think is great to see in the YA market even if these characters are much older than they’re supposed to be. Their relationship is so genuine and it comes from a mutual respect and it’s just so refreshing to see it. They love each other and they trust each other. Even when they have issues, they talk it out when they can, they come to an understanding and I think it’s a great example to younger readers.
I’ll talk a little bit about the side characters. I loved seeing pretty much every character that has ever had page time in the Chronicles of Ixia. Besides a few, the grand majority of the characters showed up in this book and it just so such much fun! Even if they only had a small mention or a few lines talking about them and how they were pitching in, it just made it feel like coming home. I want to see more from Onora and Janco and Ari. It was fun to see the characters that are part of the inner workings of the Ixian “castle.” I was really intrigued by the choice of Heli as a narrator in a few chapters. She was kind of a big part of the Glass trilogy but there was nothing of her in the first few Soulfinder books so it was strange but nice to suddenly see her POV. I really like her as a character and I loved how she was openly honest about her sexuality. She’s one out of way too many characters who is a part of LGBTQ+ spectrum and part of the reason that I want more books is that I kind of want more development with that. It’s kind of cruel of the author to share this amazing information about this character and then now we have no way of seeing it developed more. As she was persuaded to do another trilogy with Yelena, I hope she can be persuaded to do a next generation trilogy. I don’t think I could ever get enough of this series.
Overall, I am totally and completely in love and obsessed with this series. I am so heartbroken that it’s over and that this is the last book in the Chronicles of Ixia, that just blows me away. This book was amazing! The plot was full of action and suspense. The climax was lacking in my opinion but I feel like the ending was so sweet and filled me with feels and emotions for the entire journey that I’ve been through with these characters.
So that’s it for this post! I’m sure you’re all very happy that I have to stop talking about this series and these books. Knowing me, I’m still going to find ways to bring them up in the future. I’d love to know if any of you have started reading this series because of me or just in general. Thanks so much for reading and I’ll see you on my next post!