Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Touch of Power

Healer #1

by Maria V. Snyder

 Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan assumes their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honoured for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading teh plague that has decimated the Territories, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos.

Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogue who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader - an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own - is unequivocal in his demands; Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince, the leader of a campaign against her people.

As they traverse the daunting Nine Mountains, beset by mercenaries and magical dangers, Avry must decide who is worth healing and what is worth dying for.

My Rating: 4.5 / 5

My Review:
Snyder had me from the first sentence and I was sucked into the story until the last one.
While at first glance it was simply a really good book, it is the details that made me love it so much.
The question I was left with was was this a really good book or was it awesomely great?

The main character and narrator is Avry a young healer in her early twenties who finds herself in a changed and world after a plague has broken out. She has been on the run for 3 years, ever since the law changed and healers are being persecuted.
At the beginning of the story we find Avry destitute and ready to give up. She is accept her fate readily and is ok with it. She is tired of running and feels she has nothing to loose
Into this situation enter a bunch of guys. They rescue her from her holding cell. And as she finds out they were looking for her to take her to Prince Ryne to heal, which she blatantly refuses…
Kerrick the leader of the little band, and Avry butt heads from the get go. And she totally loathes him. He catches her in her attempt to flee and treats her rather roughly.They journey together through countries and difficulties, in an attempt to save what seems to have gone wrong due to the plague

Avry, is headstrong, intelligent, compassionate, witty and brave. She tries to do her best to live her life in a broken-down society. She isn't kickass but she definitely is not a damsel in distress. She is a young women trying to find her way through life, after it was pulled apart by the plague.Naturally with inexperience she makes mistakes but she is aware of her limitation and still ties to learn and change things despite the difficulties that are thrown her way.
Her magic, the healing, is an extension to that. She didnt have the opportunity to finish her training before the plague so she is inexperienced with it, to a degree. I love her describitons of her experiences with her magic and how she starts to understand things her teacher had told her

Kerrick is just as headstrong and leads with example. He is loyal and convinced that he is doing the right thing. He is on a mission to save Prince Ryan and as he hopes with that the 15realms.The men trust him totally, which is annoying to Avry but she learns soon why and does trust him as well.
He hides many secrets and is due to that really cold and harsh to Avry.
He's magic is interesting and the way he treats it as well. Just like Avry's it is somehow an extension of his character

Belen was my favorite character of the guys, he is loyal, strong and compassionate. He is the glue of this little band. He is one of the few people who understands Kerrick and does try and notch him into the right direction.

The relationships between the characters are fabulous. I really love the banter between Kerrick and Avry, but also how the boys grow on her and how she starts thinking of them as friends.
The romance was good as well. The fact that she isn't head over heals, and that she does discover the difference between desires is refreshing.

I think the reason that I loved this book is that the characters were well formed they grow and change during the book, one gets to know them as Avry does. The villains aren't just bad, they have their own personality and reasons for the way they behave. I found myself wondering why people did things, trying to first get to know them before judging them.
But besides that the world building is flawless there are many aspects that are uncovered as one reads, the countries the kings and the plague all questions that arise and are tackled in a way that when there are still questions at the end of the book, one is ok with it. Because everything grows and expands slowly so even after reading I thought of details and things I liked and I have been wondering where these characters are going to take me.
Having said that. I should mention that there is non-stop action, too. While you are taken on this beautiful journey of emotions and relations you are running through it. Its not a slow book! You thrown into the action from the first line and until right to the last one things are happening. The world is in turmoil and are thrown into the middle of it!
But there are hidden secrets to be uncovered and one is guessing about many things. Like the different meaning of the Lilies or the political situation…
Snyder has managed to created a story that takes you in and then stays with you. Again while at first glance this is a well written and well thought out story, but its so much more its has hidden depth and is full of subtle and beautiful details.

So here I am still pondering it its a great but or plain out amazing... what I can say, it is definitely one of my favorite reads this year. And I am looking forward to the sequel.

This book is a poster book to explain why I love fantasy! It is a must read if you love the genre or if you wanna get to know it!

View all my reviews

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