Touch of Power is the newest book by fantasy author Maria V. Snyder and the first volume in a brand new series. Fans of Snyder’s previous work for adults will find much to enjoy here. Avry is a tough minded and likable heroine, and most of the other characters she encounters on her travels are just as likable. I also really enjoyed the setting. Touch of Power takes place in an almost post apocalyptic fantasy world. The plague has had a deadly effect: killing a massive portion of the population, toppling governments, and leaving forests over run with deadly carnivorous plants. The novel moves along at a swift pace and is filled with drama and nail biting excitement, making it a fun read from cover to cover.
At the same time Touch of Power is not one of Snyder’s greatest works. I think the biggest issue I had with it is that after over a half dozens novels, Snyder’s work is beginning to become a little repetitive. The initial set up, where the heroine is facing her death in prison only to be rescued by a mysterious man with an interesting proposition, is near identical to that of Poison Study. The final section of the book is very similar to the final section of Spy Glass. I can understand why Snyder may have wanted to make a book with similar elements to her first two fantasy series, as such elements have proven to appeal to existing fans. Still, eventually doing the same tricks over and over again gets a little tired. Another issue I had was with the romance. Regardless of the fact that it didn’t make me as uncomfortable as the love story in Spy Glass, there were still elements about it that rubbed me the wrong way.
Touch of Power was a genuinely enjoyable read for me, but I’m not going to deny that it did have issues that impacted my enjoyment. I chose to listen to the audiobook, and I felt the narrator did okay, but she didn’t really enhance my reading experience. I have plans to read the follow up, Scent of Magic, when it is released in 2013.
Rating: four stars
Length: 390 pages
Other books I've read by this author: Poison Study, Magic Study, Fire Study, Storm Glass, Sea Glass, Spy Glass
Next I will be reviewing Fables Vol 2: Animal Farm by Bill Willingham
xposted to temporaryworlds, bookish, and goodreads