Feb 28, 2013

Book Review: Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

Book Cover: Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

#2 in Healer series

Genre: YA Fantasy

Format: Ebook, 416 pages
Published On: December 18, 2012 by Harlequin
Source: Requested for review via NetGalley.

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Warning: Although I always try not to reveal too much from the book I am talking about, further text will contain spoilers for Touch of Power, first book in Healer series, by Maria V. Snyder.

Scent of Magic continues where the story ended in Touch of Power. Sadly, Avry and Kerrick do not have an opportunity to enjoy in their freshly-admitted love. There is no time for love in war. Separated on a different missions, Avry and Kerrick are trying to somehow deter evil Tohon from conquering Fifteen Realms. The chapters alternate between them and are narrated by Avry in first person and Kerrick in third person. I was very glad that we got to hear Kerrick's side of the story and learn more about him and his feelings, hopes and dreams.

Avry and Kerrick
Avry and Kerrick (detail from Scent of Magic USA cover) [image source]

Constant switches of narrators and of course Maria V. Snyder trademark of ending chapter in cliffhanger make Scent of Magic intense and quick read. Very soon you will be surprised that you have reached the end. And then - there's another surprise for you. Another HUGE CLIFFHANGER. I hate when books end in cliffhangers. It feels like a cheap trick to build the tension and inspire the readers to buy the next book. Since the next part of Healer series, Taste of Death, is scheduled for December 2013 - we are doomed to die slowly from curiosity.

Avry is still one of the most intricately woven characters in ya fantasy that I encountered. I admire Maria V. Snyder how she combined Avry's healer abilities and feelings with sense of justice and also how they influence her decisions in battle for freedom. When your first impulse is to heal, it's much harder to hurt someone. Avry is not perfect perfectly human and someone to whom I can easily relate too.

Avry with a lily
Avry with a lily (detail from Scent of Magic UK cover) [image source]

But, one of the things I missed here are members of Kerrick's fellowship. Avry is on new mission and she changed old fellowship for new one, but the pranks, warmth and cute side characters that I loved so much were missing. Kerrick's gang is scattered and interactions, humor and love between them (that was one of my favorite parts in Touch of Power) barely exists in Scent of Magic.

Also, although Avry has a couple of encounters with lilies in the book I don't feel like there is much discovery on this topic. I hoped that Scent of Magic will give us more explanations about influence of lilies to humans. Lily is my favorite flower, so naturally I was interested to find out more about them, but Scent of Magic just adds more questions to their mystery.

Overall, Scent of Magic is a really strong second book full of exciting action. Now we have to sit and eagerly wait for the next one. Will it be intense and full of adventures? I do not have any doubt. After all - "...it's Avry. Trouble always follows her."

My Rating: 4 out of 5

I recommend this book to fans of: ya fantasy, realistic down-to-earth heroines.

Let's Talk:

Did you read Scent of Magic or some other book by Maria V. Snyder? Did you like it?

Any other thoughts or comments?


  1. I've been wanting this since my book store said it came out in December. Have I seen it there? No! I'm glad you liked it but I'm sad that there isn't much of Kerricks friends we met in the first book.

    1. I was lucky to get approved for ARC via NetGalley. I read it in December and then it took me more than two months to write a review. Whenever I tried writing it it turned it rant about cliffhanger ending.
      I hope your bookstore gets a copy soon or you could try ordering it online?

      Kerrick's friends appear from time to time but much less than in a first book. I especially missed Belen. :( Who was your favorite member of the gang?


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