With her greatest enemy dead, and on her way to be reunited with the family she'd been stolen from long ago, Yelena should be pleased. But though she has gained her freedom, she can't help feeling isolated in Sitia. Her Ixian background has changed her in many ways—and her new-found friends and relatives don't think it's for the better.
Despite the turmoil, she's eager to start her magic training—especially as she's been given one year to harness her power or be put to death. But her plans take a radical turn when she becomes involved with a plot to reclaim Ixia's throne for a lost prince—and gets entangled in powerful rivalries with her fellow magicians.
If that wasn't bad enough, it appears her brother would love to see her dead. Luckily, Yelena has some old friends to help her with all her new enemies.
Last year I bought a book called Poison Study because it sounded interesting and I really liked the cover. I ended up LOVING the book to bits and added the sequel, Magic Study, to my to-read list right away. But then I found out the cover I wanted wasn’t available anywhere. Not on the websites I usually buy my books, not in the stores, nowhere. I got really sad because I really wanted that cover (to match with my first book) and after a while, I just gave up, even though I really wanted to finish the series. Then a couple of weeks ago I decided to check out Amazon.de. I’d recently gotten a new credit card and I decided to look for Magic Study. And on the German Amazon marketplace, there was a Magic Study book with the cover that I wanted. I ordered it immediately and cheered when it turned out to actually be that cover! (And now that I’m checking my usual websites, they seem to have the book in stock again… Grrrrr!!)
Magic Study continues the story of Yelena Zaltana, who has been banished from Ixia for performing magic. Should she ever return there, she shall be executed without a thought. So Yelena and Irys travel to Sitia, the land they both actually come from, to find Yelena’s family – the Zaltana’s. Then, she is brought to the Citadel, where she is to start her magical training. But there is a murderer on the loose, and Yelena is determined to catch him.
In this book, we are introduced to so many new characters; including Yelena’s family, the four magicians and some of the students at the Keep. I really liked her family almost immediately (with one exception, which is probably pretty obvious if you’ve read the book), and the two students (Dax and Gelsi) were great as well, Dax immediately felt like he was going to be a good friend to Yelena and I think she needed a friend like that (since Ari and Janco weren’t there). We also see some old characters return, which I will not really be going into much detail about because of spoilers. But of course, there is still Irys who becomes Yelena’s mentor and a sort of second mother in this book. I really liked that, because I like Irys as a character!
I also liked the fact that we get more magic in this book, mostly of course because the story happens in Sitia where magic is allowed and even encouraged. I loved how Yelena developed her powers and learned more and more about her abilities; The map at the beginning of the book was amazing as well, and I really enjoyed learning more about Sitia in this book – even though we didn’t learn much about the majority of the clans, we did learn about the Zaltana’s, the Sandseed clan and of course the people in the Citadel. I do wish the map had been bigger because I found it hard to read some of the small letters.
The writing was just as good as the previous book, and honestly I hadn’t expected anything else from Maria V. Snyder; I will definitely be picking up the third book – Fire Study – and then the Glass series (which I believe is a sort of spin-off) and the new book in this series, Shadow Study! If you like Throne of Glass, I definitely recommend the Study series to you. It’s similar but also very different from ToG but they are both amazing book series, and I personally love them both to bits!