Fire Study (Study, Book 3)
by Maria V. Snyder
Review by Barry Newton
Mira Books Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780778325345
Date: 01 March 2008 List Price $13.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Links: Author's Website / Read an excerpt / Show Official Info /
There are at least three aspects to the study of fire in this novel. Firstly, Yelena is unable to perform the beginner's trick of creating flame. Secondly, she encounters a new class of enemy, the Fire Warper. And thirdly, the climax is, well, incandescent. Literally hot enough to melt glass. Opal the glassblower plays a major part in the outcome, and will be featured in the next story written in this universe.
A host of other strong characters people this tale: Valek, Yelena's lover and mentor, with a knack for showing up in time; Leif, the brother who finally sees her as family; Cahil the nemesis; Moon Man, the Sand Weaver who teaches with the clarity of a zen master; as well as Kiki and the bat.
According to the author, this story completes the cycle begun with Poison Study and Magic Study. One can only hope she changes her mind. The market can speak very persuasively. In the person of Yelena, poison taster, assassin, fighter, diplomat and mage, Ms. Snyder has rendered a character with plenty of room to grow. Yelena will be well worth revisiting somewhere down the line.
A Promethean effort; highly recommended.