POISON STUDY Read-Along: Chapters 1-8 + Giveaway


In case you weren’t aware, the POISON STUDY Read Along began on October 1st. And although it’s already started, it’s not too late to sign up. Just check out the sign-up post HERE for more details.

Today I’m sharing my thoughts on the first eight chapters of the book. And let me tell you, even though I’ve read POISON STUDY before, it was impossible to stop reading at the end of those eight chapters. I have a feeling I’ll be finished with the re-read before next week. I’ll probably be finished re-reading it today.

But I will wait for the appropriate dates to post my thoughts. I may read ahead, but I won’t post ahead.

If you’d like to check out the schedule, it follows below. But I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the assigned chapters every Wednesday.

If you’d like to check out what the other four hosts think each week, be sure to check out their weekly posts.

AND… if you’re participating in the read along and would like to share your thoughts for this week’s chapters, leave them and/or your post link in the comments.

The Read-along Schedule

  • October 4th-10th | Chapters 1-8
  • October 11th-17th | Chapters 9-17
  • October 18th-24th |Chapters 18-25
  • October 25th-31st |Chapters 26-32 and closing post

The Hosts

Thoughts on Chapters 1-8

I have previously read POISON STUDY. But it was quite some time ago when I did read it. So when I picked it up for the read along, I wasn’t instantly familiar with what was happening and wasn’t entirely sure of how things would unfold. But it didn’t take long to be reminded of the characters, the world, what I loved about this book.

POISON STUDY is one of those reads that grabs hold right from the start. You’re introduced to a prisoner who is about to be executed. You’re only given the slightest bit of information about them before their time is supposed to be up. You learn the prisoner is a woman. That her name is Yelena. And that she’s being offered the choice between execution or becoming the Commander’s food taster – a job that lasts until death and might not be much of a stay of execution if she were to make a mistake.

Every piece of information the author reveals only makes you want to know more. It makes you eager to keep reading to find out exactly what situation Yelena found herself in that made her become a murderer.  It makes you want to know how Valek, the Commander’s right-hand man, earned his reputation. It makes you want to learn more about Ixia and whether the new militaristic regime is better or worse than the previous one.

In the first eight chapters Yelena goes through an interesting but pretty awful learning process in order to get up to speed about poisons and what is required of her to be the Commander’s next taster. She is continually hounded by the guards of the General whose son she killed. She is constantly being tested, poisoned, by Valek. But she survives every ordeal and is all set to begin her job as the official food taster.

Much is learned about Ixia. Quite a bit is revealed about Yelena, including the fact that she may have some ability to wield magic and seems to have an affinity for detecting poisons. And there is a bit of foreshadowing involving General Brazell.

Valek remains quite the mystery at the end of the eighth chapter. One you’ll most definitely want to solve.

It’s still very early in the read. The world is only just being developed. But more than enough detail is provided so that you can start to picture it. Already certain characters are beginning to stand out. And although their trustworthiness is still up in the air, there are a few that fall onto the “likable” side and a few that definitely fall onto the “despise” side.

And as far as the re-reading experience goes? Awesome. These chapters flew. And yet I couldn’t read fast enough. I wanted to devour this entire book, not just the eight chapters assigned. The story so far is incredibly exciting. And with Yelena’s job, it’s guaranteed to be a nail-biter. Because at any moment she could be fatally poisoned.

Or Brazell’s men could come after her. Or the Commander could tire of her, sealing her fate. Or Valek could decide she’s not trustworthy enough. Or her ability could be discovered.

So much could go wrong. At any moment. We’ll just have to wait and see.

Until next week…



Add to Goodreads

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 10 Winners to Match 10 Years Giveaway

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

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