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Touch of Power (Healer) Paperback – December 27, 2011
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
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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 princeleader 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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However, if I were to rate this based on character development, plot and setting this story lacked.
1.The characters lacked depth, and I found myself annoyed with them and their lack of real emotions. And a lot of the motives behind the various chatacters' actions were unrealistic or dumb or both.
2. The premise is good but executed poorly, the story pace was way too fast for its own good. There were many interesting scenes in the story that could have been extended to further development the setting and the world they live in or just let the reader get to know and connect with the characters better. But sadly that wasn't the case. Details were brushed over or nonexistent and I found myself at a loss as to what the settings and world they live in were like.
3. Instant romance and love triangle attempts that epically failed. This is where the story really screwed up. Tropes that were butchered.
All in all, this isn't a high end novel or anything special at all. Yeach the magic system was interesting but not impressive when you really look at how it was illustrated. I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone unless they are in the mood for a fast read to get then out of a reading slump.
The story is this: in a world where a plague swept across kingdoms and devastated land after land, a young healer hides her healing powers because everyone believes that healers were the ones to blame for the plague itself--and for not healing the population from it. One night, after healing a dying child, Avry, who might just be the last healer left alive and in hiding, is caught...and then rescued by a group of men who need her to heal a king and save the kingdoms. Of course, it isn't really that simple, because in Avry's world it never is. Is the king really a good guy worth saving? Are her rescuers saviors or kidnappers?
If you haven't read Poison Study, I'd go back and read that series first (it's so friggin amazing), but if you have, don't worry - Maria Snyder won't disappoint here either.
Much of Touch of Power takes place as Avry and her captors, who become her friends, travel toward the Nine Mountains so she can heal Ryne. To say that Avry is less than thrilled with leader Kerrick is an understatement; but it's equally evident that there are sparks flying between the two and that they work well together. A lot of time is spent on Avry learning the tricks of the forest and there are some side forays such as helping a girl who has been kidnapped that add to the length of the book. The best parts are the interactions between Avry, Belen, and the "monkeys" (the men helping Kerrick retrieve Avry); it's so nice to see genuine friendships develop slowly, and it gives depth to Avry's character. There is a lot of repetition in the travels: staying away from Death Lilies, sleeping in caves, escaping mercenaries; while those things didn't bother me, I do wonder now if perhaps they could have somehow been varied a bit. The whole story with Avry's sister Noelle took me by surprise and I look forward to seeing how it will all play out in the future.
I loved Avry's spirited personality and her headstrong attitude and felt she was definitely the brightest link in the book. Smart female protagonists always enhance my enjoyment and Avry is no exception, with her sharp mind and outstanding sense of sarcasm. A few times I was drawn out of the story by the modern feeling of the dialogue, but since it's a fantasy, I feel the author can choose to write it as she wishes. I was not such a fan of Kerrick, however; I disliked his unwillingness to listen and definitely despised his treatment, sometimes physical, of Avry early on. It's going to take some doing before I'm 100% on board with him.
My biggest complaint, if it can be termed as such, is that it's hard to gauge the readership for this novel. Though the characters are in their twenties, they often interact and react as though they were teens. While I see this novel as appealing to all fantasy readers and most young adult readers, I wonder if there will be those who will nitpick the actions of twenty-somethings who do not seem fully adult. But Maria V. Snyder's writing fully engages and those minor concerns are lost in the overall fun and action of the story. I'm on to the second book!
Most recent customer reviews
When I first grabbed this book I thought it would be another Ixia story. I admit that was all in my head.Read more