Touch of Power

Touch of Power

Book rating: 04 Paperback Healer

By (author) Maria V Snyder

$66.12

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  • Publisher: Mira Books
  • Format: Paperback | 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 213mm x 25mm | 10,591g
  • Publication date: 20 December 2011
  • ISBN 10: 0778313077
  • ISBN 13: 9780778313076
  • Edition statement: Original.
  • Sales rank: 28,251

Product description

Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan absorbs their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Fifteen Realms, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos. Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues 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--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. Because the price of peace may well be her life....

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Customer reviews

By theEPICrat 04 Feb 2012 5

Hi, I am the(EPIC)rat, and I have a fantasy problem. I read Touch Of Power a while back, and it has tipped me into a full-blown addiction for fantasy of a similar ilk. Since I am unable to find anything that matches that sort of fantastic and romantic and sarcastic, I am undergoing some serious withdrawal until I find the next fantasy fix!

THE GOOD BITS
{Fans of Sharon Shinn: READ THIS} I love me some Sharon Shinn and totally fell in love with Troubled Waters! I did not think another author could reach that level of awesome, but Maria V. Snyder has nailed it with Touch Of Power. It reminded me of Mystic And Rider with a group of characters traveling to reach a certain destination. As I begin to dip my toes more often in the fantasy pool, I realize that there are some similar elements that float from one book to the next: a widespread plague that also targets the royal family, forbidden magic, an underdog who holds all the answers, etc. They may all start blending together, but Maria V. Snyder wove the story into something that felt all brand new and exciting.

{Group dynamics} I have never met a more enjoyable group of characters! They were funny, heroic, and downright temperamental when the scene called for it. Sparks especially flew for Avry and the leader Kerrick as they exasperated each other every step of the way, and I ate every bit of it up!

{Strong female lead} Avry kicks some serious ass! She may not ace the test on stealth and steel, but she can keep her wits about in the face of danger. None of this fainting and wimpering for this girl! No, ma'am. Quick on her feet, quicker to think and learn, and quickest to do the right thing, I think Avry may give Alanna a good run for her money. What really sealed the deal for me is that, underneath all that tough exteriour, Avry has a wicked sense of humor :)

THE BAD BITS
{The cover} I wish the US cover looked less girly and went more along the lines of the UK one. I think the cover does the story a disservice because it makes Avry seem all rainbows and starshine, but she is actually full of throwing knives and healing powers.

{Left me sad and lonely} I wish this story could have went on longer - and I am not sure how soon Touch Of Power will turn into a series. Answer: NOT SOON ENOUGH.

THE OVERALL
Seriously? GO READ THIS BOOK NOW for the love of all things fantasy. I have not been THIS enthusiastic about a fantasy book since Troubled Waters, and I admit that I can be a hard egg to crack! Fans of Sharon Shinn and Tamora Pierce who are searching for a new "it" fantasy to stalk, be prepared to eat this book up and ask for seconds.

By Novia Chang 19 Jan 2012 4

I'm a fan of Maria V. Snyder. Poison Study and Inside Out are two books I absolutely love so I was excited to see that she has a new fantasy series for me to get lost in. Touch of Power is classic Snyder and it does not disappoint.

No doubt, Snyder is a master at world building. The plague ravaged Fifteen Realms is in shambles and the political leaders that are left alive are scrambling to grab as much power and territories as they can. Avry, who has been hiding and on the run for years, becomes a pawn in this political game. Throw in characters with special magical abilities and carnivorous flowers big enough to swallow a person whole and you have an unputdownable book that will keep you absolutely engaged to the end.

Speaking of characters with special abilities, Avry's healing is very cool. She is also snarky and having the story told from her perspective is a treat. My only complaint is that at times, Avery's narration is a bit too modern and out of place with the rest of the fantasy setting. Still, I love Avry, she is definitely another wonderful and memorable character that Ms. Snyder has created.

Kerrick is a huge jerk at the beginning of the book. He's a brooding kill-joy and a bit of a bully at first, but thankfully, he fully redeems himself by the end. While I know I shouldn't, I did compare him to Valek from Poison Study and while I don't love him as much as Valek, Kerrick does have his own kind of awesome going for him. The secondary characters are very well written as well. Kerrick's men are so lovable and the bad guy is especially pervy and awful. He is definitely the guy you love to hate.

As an escapist reader, I really enjoyed getting lost in another of Maria Snyder's fabulous worlds. I highly recommend this book to fantasy lovers everywhere, and even if you don't usually read fantasy, you should try Touch of Power. It's that good!

Content: Kissing, sexual situations, implied sex (no detailed descriptions) and violence. This is not a YA novel and most of the characters, including Avry and Kerrick, are in their twenties. I don't think it is appropriate for younger teens but older, more mature teens should be fine.

By Shelley Cusbert 20 Dec 2011 4

Touch of Power is a new series debut for Maria V Snyder whose Study, Glass and Insider series have earned her many fans.

As a newly apprenticed Healer, Avry of Kazan has been in hiding since a plague swept through the Fifteen Realms decimating the population. Panicked villagers blamed the disease on the Healers, a small group of people with the natural born skill to absorb sickness and pain, who seemed to be immune to the fatal plague yet could not save the people from it. Finally caught and just hours from execution, Avry is rescued by a group of soldiers yet her death sentence has not be commuted but simply stayed, for they have abducted Avry to save the life of their plague stricken King. During the dangerous trek across the Realms at the mercy of magic and mercenaries to reach the King, Avry has a decision to make, does she save the King, or herself?

Snyder takes her readers on quite an adventure across her mythical lands. I enjoyed the creativity which governs the Fifteen Realms Since I am not a huge fan of high fantasy I was glad that Touch of Power has a contemporary feel though it's setting is decidedly other, somewhere between medieval and dystopian really, yet it works surprisingly well. The story is almost an old fashioned quest as Avry and Kerrick's team battle murderous bounty hunters, killer plants, zombies and sociopathic rulers to rescue the King and save their country. There is plenty of action, drama and suspense as well humour and romance that creates an easy to read page turner.

In Avry of Kazan, Snyder has created a smart, resourceful and strong protagonist for her new series. Avry's unique ability to heal should be regarded as a blessing but it is as much a curse for when Avry heals she takes the pain and suffering of the affliction into herself. As a Healer her power that allows her to survive almost anything, including the fatal embrace of the Death Lily, except the ravages of the plague. I liked Avry's attitude, she is outspoken and a little rash at times but with so few options available to her I appreciate her determination to create her own fate.
Avry's saviours, Kerrick and his motley crew of mercenaries - Belen, Vinn, Quain and Flea, are surprisingly endearing characters and I really enjoyed it as the bonds between the men and Avry developed. While a relationship between Avry and Kerrick does evolve, it does so slowly and works well within the story. Kerrick is just a little 'alpha' but his sense of loyalty, honour and desire to protect make up for his arrogance.

Snyder expertly balances adventure, fantasy, drama and romance with interesting characters and a creatively imagined world for a wide audience. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed Touch of Power, though probably I shouldn't have been since it has similarities to Poison Study which I liked a lot as well, and I'm already looking forward to the release of the second book expected in 2012.

By Brandi Kosiner (Brandi Breathes Books) 02 Dec 2011 5

Ms. Snyder does it again! I loved the beginning of this newest series as much as the magic series (although my favorite by her is still her study series).
She nails another set of characters, and appeals to me with a strong heroine. Avry has a great voice, and she draws me into her story. I care about what she's doing, and can empathize with her choices, and situations.
The secondary cast is also fantastic. Kerrick is wonderfully frustrating, and I want to strangle him often. I can understand his motivations to an extent, but she writes a tough character. I can't believe how far he goes with some of the things he does, but I also can see and love the melty side that is well hidden for quite a while.
The healing is always an interest to me as a main subject, and I love her use of the lilies in the story, and the twists that she incorporates.
I was on the edge of my seat, and disappointed any time that I was interrupted and had to put the book down. I'm very happy for the chance to read this one, and I can't wait for the release of the next.

By annmarie ager 22 Oct 2011 5

Avry of Kazan is a healer at one stage there was many people like her but now she is the last of her kind. She has been running since the healers were blamed for starting the plague that killed so many people. Avry did the only thing she could run and hide.

The only problem is as a healer it's not always easy to watch people die when you know you can save them. When Avry slips up and heals a dying child you would think people would be grateful but no the town turns her in for the promise of gold and Avry is left waiting for her death.
The most shocking thing happens next she is rescued from the town but what do her rescuers what and what will it cost her.

Avry is a strong minded lead character from the start you really did feel for the character. She is one of those women you want to be. She is smart and she has hidden all this time without being court. She is strong minded even when faced with the worse. The author really does know how to make her characters stand out. There were a lot of unforgettable people in this book and at times you wished you could meet them face to face. You become attached to the people you're reading about and you don't want the adventure to stop.

The story line of the book was just brilliant it was a fantasy to remember there was the world it was based in. There was a raging war going on the common people are struggling to survive while the royals are all about winning no one seems to care about the people they are ruling. The book was packed with interesting things like the healers and magic and what people will do with their abilities.

The story worked really well and it had my interested from the very start. I loved learning about the people and the world the book was set in. There was none stop action and some of the funniest comments from characters. There was lies and back stabbing. I really did fall in love with the book.
By the end you are going to be holding your heart in your hand you might even cry but most of all your going to have the need to know what will happen next.

Maria V. Snyder is the queen of fantasy and Touch of power proves it.
5 stars.

Review quote

"The rare sequel to live up to the promise of its predecessor, Magic Study is a wonderful combination of romance and fantasy." -Audible.com (Editor's Pick: Best of 2006-Romance)