OH THANK GOODNESS YOU GUYS! Seriously, I am so so glad I decided to read Touch Of Power by Maria V. Snyder as my first book of 2013 as I found it to be highly satisfying and a good note to start the year on. Also? It has been WAY too long since I’ve read a Maria V. Snyder book. I KNOW. Awful right? Plus, it’s kind of cool to start the year with a book I purchased rather than one I’ve received for review. And I imagine some of you might disagree but I think it sets a nice little precedent. Anyways. Touch Of Power was romantic and had plagues and a fierce main character with a big heart and I know you all are like okay you plague loving weirdo, but for serious, I gobbled this noise up.
Touch Of Power takes place in a land known as the Fifteen Realms. These realms have been decimated in population because of an incurable plague. The survivors blame a group of magic holders known as Healers for the plague because they believe the Healers started the plague. Avry is a healer and has been on the run for three years. All of the other healers she either hasn’t heard from or are dead. You see, there’s a bounty on the healers for 20 gold pieces which is a huge deal because everyone is poor. Anyways, Avry cannot resist healing a little kid and rather than be thankful, the townspeople turn on her. She’s saved though at the last minute by Kerrick who then proceeds to kidnap her in hopes she will heal someone. And that’s JUST THE BEGINNING. Y’all, things get real in Touch Of Power.
Avry was my sort of main character. She’s not quite stubborn, but she’s headstrong. She is very determined to make her own choices and won’t let anyone take her agency away from her. Unlike, Yelena from Poison Study, she doesn’t carry around a dark past, well at least in comparison. Anyways, Avry totally does have her problems, but I ended up really liking her because she comes across as warm and open and someone who genuinely cares about others.
Just as I can ramble for a long paragraph about Valek, I can ramble a little about Kerrick. He’s the leader of this small band of dudes and saves Avry from certain death because he knows she is a healer. Anyways, the two totally butt heads at first. I actually started off strongly disliking Kerrick because he does something VERY awful, but I guess I don’t know, my mind changed. He started to come across as someone who was very loyal and that mattered to me. Plus, he’s the type that doesn’t let emotion show — the STOIC type and I’m just going to say I am so glad to read a book with the love interest not getting all emo and upset over the stupidest things like another book I just finished that I won’t muck up this review with.
I have to say, I would have liked a bigger and better map in my copy. I bought the Kindle Fire version of Touch Of Power, but the map was so small and I couldn’t read the names of the places or zoom in. I know, that’s a silly complaint but I’m one of those readers who LOVES a good map. What I did love about the world building was the magic system. There are various types of magic users that correlate with the elements and also with life and death. I liked that each element has a draw back. Also, not everyone is able to use magic. FURTHER! There are various guilds for the different magics and people are apprentices and whatnot. AND OMG! There’s a disease and it’s incurable, and I mentioned that in the top paragraph, but if you’re like me and love a good plague it just bears repeating that you should read this book.
If you read for the romance, note Touch Of Power is not quite as swoonworthy as Poison Study, but I think that it’s more romantic than the Inside Out books. The romance is one of those slow burns enjoy the journey sort of romances. What I mean by this is, if you’ve ever read a YA or adult book with romance before you can obviously tell who is going to get together — it’s just a matter of getting to that destination. AND SO! It does take Avry a bit of time to get to the destination, but as trust is built and gained, that is the part that I LOVE reading, the sort of slow build slow burn swoons.
Unfortunately, I was not entirely in love with the writing style. I didn’t feel the need to highlight or quote anything in Touch Of Power. It’s not like one of those books with delicious prose. HOWEVER, the pacing is quite good. I wasn’t like ugh we’re still in this realm, stop staring and the trees and pick up the damn pace. Nope. Instead, I was content with where the book was going. So, I liked the plotting and the characterization, but I thought the writing was kind of basic.
I actually really enjoyed Maria V. Snyder’s Touch Of Power and was pleased with where the book went and how the plot played out. I whipped through this book in no time as well because I found the disease and the political struggle between the different realms very compelling, not to mention the slow burns ALL OF THEM.
Disclosure: Purchased Copy when it was a $1.99 Kindle Daily Deal
Other reviews of Touch Of Power by Maria V. Snyder:
Giraffe Days – “Snyder’s writing continues to grow in confidence and style.”
The Book Rat – “an engaging story with rootforable characters”
The Book Swarm – “a great start to a new series”
Books by Maria V. Snyder: