POISON STUDY Anniversary Tour: Scavenger Hunt Post + Giveaway


I am so excited to be celebrating the 10th anniversary of Maria V. Snyder’s POISON STUDY and to have an awesome excerpt to share from chapter two with my scavenger hunt word – which I have to say is the best word.

POISON STUDY is an amazing book and the author is incredibly talented and imaginative. And I’m thrilled that ten years later the story is still exciting, the characters are still very much beloved, and it has had some beautiful covers to be wrapped up in.

In addition to the scavenger hunt part of the tour, there’s a fan-freaking-tastic giveaway for some seriously cool prizes. So don’t forget to enter in the Rafflecopter for a chance to win!

And be sure to check out just some of the book’s lovely covers below.



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Title & Series: POISON STUDY (Study #1)
Author: Maria V. Snyder Release date: October 1, 2005
Publisher: Luna
Pages: 440
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook



Choose: A quick death . . . or slow poison.

About to be executed for murder, Yelena is offered an extraordinary reprieve. She’ll eat the best meals, have rooms in the palace—and risk assassination by anyone trying to kill the Commander of Ixia.

And so Yelena chooses to become a food taster. But the chief of security, leaving nothing to chance, deliberately feeds her Butterfly’s Dust—and only by appearing for her daily antidote will she delay an agonizing death from the poison.

As Yelena tries to escape her new dilemma, disasters keep mounting. Rebels plot to seize Ixia and Yelena develops magical powers she can’t control. Her life is threatened again and choices must be made. But this time the outcomes aren’t so clear. . . .


The Poison Study Covers

The Scavenger Hunt Excerpt

…From Chapter Two

With some trepidation, I took a sip, again detecting the faint orange taste.  Bracing myself for the rancid flavor, I gargled Valek’s drink and was relieved that it only enhanced the orange essence.

“Better?” Valek asked as he took back the empty cup.


Valek sat down behind his desk, opening my folder once more. Picking up his quill, he talked to me while writing.  “You just had your first lesson in food tasting.  Your drink was laced with a poison called Butterfly’s Dust.  Mine wasn’t.  The only way to detect Butterfly’s Dust in a liquid is to gargle it.  That rotten orange flavor you tasted was the poison.”

I rose, my head spinning.  “Is it lethal?”

“A big enough dose will kill you in two days.  The symptoms don’t arrive until the second day, but by then it’s too late.”

“Did I have a lethal dose?”  I held my breath.

“Of course.  Anything less and you wouldn’t have tasted the poison.”

My stomach rebelled and I started to gag.  I forced down the bile in my throat, trying hard to avoid the indignity of vomiting all over Valek’s desk.

Valek looked up from the stack of papers.  He studied my face.  “I warned you the training would be dangerous.  But I would hardly give you a poison your body had to fight while you suffered from malnutrition.  There is an antidote to Butterfly’s Dust.”  He showed me a small vial containing a white liquid.

Sinking back into my chair, I sighed deeply.  Valek’s metal face had returned; I realized he hadn’t offered the antidote to me.

“In answer to the question you didn’t ask but should have, this…”  Valek raised the small vial and shook it, “…is how we keep the Commander’s food taster from escaping.”

I stared at him, trying to understand the implication.

“Yelena, you confessed to murder.  We would be fools to let you serve the Commander without some guarantees.  Guards watch the Commander at all times and it is unlikely you would be able to reach him with a weapon.  For other forms of retaliation, we use Butterfly’s Dust.”  Valek picked up the vial of antidote, and twirled it in the sunlight.  “You need a daily dose of this to stay alive.  The antidote keeps the poison from killing you.  As long as you show up each morning in my office, I will give you the antidote.  Miss one morning and you’ll be dead by the next.  Commit a crime or an act of treason and you’ll be sent back to the dungeon until the poison takes you.  I would avoid that fate, if I were you.  The poison causes severe stomach cramps, and uncontrollable vomiting.”

Before full comprehension of my situation could sink in, Valek’s eyes slid past my shoulder.  I turned to see a stout woman in a housekeeper’s uniform opening the door.  Valek introduced her as Margg, the person that would take care of my basic needs.  Expecting me to follow her, Margg strode quickly out the door.

I glanced at the vial on Valek’s desk.

About Maria V. Snyder


Maria V. Snyder changed from being a meteorologist to a novelist in 1995, when she began writing to keep her sanity while raising two children. Since then, she has published numerous freelance articles in magazines and newspapers, and teaches fiction-writing classes at the local college and area libraries. The classes give her the wonderful opportunity to encourage fellow writers, and to keep improving her craft.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maria always had a fascination with big storms. Dreaming of chasing tornados, Maria earned a bachelors of science degree in meteorology at Penn State University. But she discovered, much to her chagrin, that forecasting the weather wasn’t one of her skills. In order to chase tornados you had to predict where they might form. Creating fantasy worlds where she has complete control of the weather was more agreeable to her.

Maria’s research on food-tasting methods with an expert chocolate taster, her husband, turned out to be a delicious bonus while writing Poison Study.

Maria has a brown belt in Isshinryu Karate, and enjoys playing volleyball and the cello. Traveling in general and via cruise ship in particular are her biggest distractions from writing. Maria has traveled to Belize, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and through the Panama Canal.

Maria lives with her husband, son, daughter and yellow lab, Hazelnut, in Pennsylvania where she is at work on more LUNA novels. She is also pursuing a master’s degree in writing popular fiction from Seton Hill University.

Readers are welcome to contact Maria at the following email address:


Other Books in the Series

The Study Series

The 10 Winners to Match 10 Years Giveaway

There is an amazing tour-wide giveaway for…

The Prizes

  • GRAND PRIZE: SIGNED hardcover first editions of POISON STUDY and MAGIC STUDY
  • FIRST PLACE: a SIGNED hardcover first edition of POISON STUDY
  • FIVE (5) WINNERS: a SIGNED cover flat of the original cover of POISON STUDY
  • THREE (3) WINNERS: a SIGNED original bookmark for POISON STUDY

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour Schedule

Week One

Week Two


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