Touch of Power by Maria V Snyder
Paperback: 400 pages
Reading level: YA & Adult alike
Release date: December 20, 2011
Series: Healer #1
Source: ARC from Net Galley
Reviewed by: Tynga
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…
Avry has a very unique talent and a group of man are ready to do anything to keep her alive. See, she is the last of Healers, a group able to assume other people’s injuries and heal themselves – or die trying. There used to be many of them, but after the plague hit the Fifteen Realms, the Healers were accused of spreading it, leading to a witch hunt of uncontrollable proportions. Kerrick and his rogue band will break her out of prison and save her from the pier, protect her from mercenaries, all the while dragging her to heal a King, victim of the plague. But healing this man will cost her own life, is she willing to make the sacrifice?
Touch of Power is another amazing fantasy novel by Maria. Set in a world with medieval ways and a select few people with Magical skills, Maria laid the table for an epic adventure. I was completely engrossed by the dangerous atmosphere, with its characters trying to avoid ambushes from powerful enemies to reach a very specific goal. In fact, I was so compelled I read the whole book in one sitting, which is a rare feat for me.
Miss Snyder paid extra attention to details and it paid off. She painted a very realistic world and the magical abilities she blessed her characters with – and their precise description- made the story that much more brilliant. The plot was also quite interesting. It starts in a slow and linear manner but at some point the routine the characters established will shatter and provide a very exciting and nerve-wracking second half of the book.
Maria’s characters were endearing and to following their success and defeats proved to be quite a rollercoaster ride. Avry is a strong, pig-headed, compassionate woman with a strong motherly instinct. She always wants to do what’s right, even putting her own life in danger to do so. Kerrick is a very enigmatic character and trying to figure him out along the journey was one of the highlights for me. I also have to mention Belen, the Poppa Bear, for whom I had a very sweet spot.
The end proved to be a very emotional one for me. I wept (snuff and all) through the end, so bad that I couldn’t see the words anymore ‘cause they were too blurry. Touch of Power really met my expectations and I truly can’t wait to get my hands on the second book in the series! Fantasy fans, make sure you don’t miss that precious piece of fiction!