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Sunday, 26 January 2014

Review: Taste of Darkness

Author: Maria V Snyder

Release date: 31st Dec 2013
Genre: Fantasy
Target audience: YA/ Adult Crossover
UK Publisher: Mira Books

Taste of Darkness is the final book in the Avry of Kazan series.

This book was utterly satisfying – from the first page to the last. I didn’t want to put it but I also didn’t want to finish it.

Naturally, the story picks up where we left the characters in Scent of Magic but all is not well. Kerrick, gravely ill from the Death Lily toxin, disappears into the night. Avry refuses to believe that he is dead. But after weeks pass, she is forced to stop searching for him and return her focus to problem of the plague. It seems a new strain has been developed and it is a race against time to protect her friends and allies. But Avry herself is facing a plague; her dreams are being violated by Tohon. Is it her psyche trying to search for the answers, or could Tohon have escaped the magical paralysis? The days ahead will test Avry to the limit and see her stare death in the face.

I’ll say no more about the plot because let’s face it, no one likes a spoiler!

What I love about Maria V Snyder’s writing is that her characters are consistent in their actions. They act only as they would act. Avry is consistently selfless. She’s a healer by magic and a healer by heart. Kerrick is warrior prince. He doesn’t hesitate to make hard decisions. When he kills, you’re not surprised because he has always been committed to the cause since the beginning of the first book in the series. Ryne is the military strategist he’s always been. But we don’t have to like it.

Life and death, war and peace are serious heavy issues. Snyder does a wonderful job of lightening the dark places of the novel with humour – driven again by solid characterisation - Flea and the monkeys offer amusement, loyalty and courage in the face of the enemy.

This conclusion will surely please all fans of the series. It was romantic. It had a thrilling, unpredictable plot. It was full of tension but of course, it ends just how you want it to. I can’t wait to see what Maria V Snyder writes next. She’s definitely one of my favourite fantasy authors. If you haven’t read her books, you should: Start with Poison Study.

Source: Bought from Amazon

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