March 5, 2009

Poison Study

"Like the deadly toxins sought out by the ill-fated food taster Yelena in Maria V. Snyder's debut novel, Poison Study is a powerfully compelling romantic fantasy that will slip under readers' skin, invade their bloodstreams, and seize their heartstrings.

Yelena, convicted of murdering the son of a powerful gneral, awaits execution. But with only a few hours left, she is offered an incredible reprieve -- and agrees to become the new food taster for Commander Ambrose, the military leader of Ixia. Living in a palace and eating only the best meals is a dramatic change for Yelena, who spent the last year locked up in a rat-infested dungeon, eating gruel. But she soon realizes that she has more to worry about than ingesting potentially lethal poisons in the commander's meals. The general whose son she murdered has vowed bloody vengeance, and everyone in the commander's retinue look at Yelena as an untrustworthy criminal. The longer she stays alive, however, the more she begins to understand her own perplexing abilities -- all of which will be put to the test when cunning rebels plot to take control of Ixia.

While many genre-blending novels seem to unintentionally dilute the literary domains involved, Poison Study is both a riveting romance and a spellbinding fantasy. The richly historied and vividly described realm that Snyder has created is completely convincing and large enough to encompass (hopefully) many more novels featuring Yelena, an enigmatic heroine with so many secrets and so much promise." -- Barnes and Noble


Nikki Reed as Yelena- raised in an orphanage in the Territory of Ixia's Military District #5. General Brazell, the leader of MD-5, made sure the kids in the orphanage had everything they needed. In between school lessons, Yelena learned acrobatics, hung out with her friends May and Carra, and competed in the annual Fire Festival. When she turned 16, she was invited to help the General and his son, Reyad with some important experiments.

The experiments didn't go well at all, and after two years, Yelena ended up in the Commander of Ixia's dungeon awaiting execution for the murder of Reyad. After a year living in a rat-infested, dank cell, she was offered a choice instead. Become the Commander's new Food Taster or go to the gallows.

Josh Lucas as Valek-As the chief of security, Valek’s duties involve keeping the Territory of Ixia and the Commander safe. He’s in charge of a vast network of spies throughout Ixia and into the southern lands of Sitia. The work suits him as he enjoys putting together pieces of information and discovering plots and plans well before they’re initiated. Patience learned when he studied the assassin arts aids him when he does find an illegal activity in full swing.

Michelle Yeoh as Commander Ambrose- Powerful and focused, the Commander doesn’t suffer fools at all. Driven by his own code of behaviour, the Commander detests opulence and excess, viewing it as a waste of time and money. He believes in simplicity and logic, and has set up a strict way of living that is very straightforward and without compromise.

Uncorrupted by power, he lives the life he endorses, makes sure all his people are treated fairly, and all their needs are met. Advisors and officers are promoted based solely on intelligence and skill.

Alexander Nevsky as Ari-Solid, strong and unflappable, Ari is a down to earth guy. His intelligence has helped him rise through the ranks of the Commander’s Army from Private to Captain. He is the complete opposite of his partner, Janco, who can drive him crazy at times but Ari won’t trust anyone else to protect his back.

David Anders as Janco- Quick witted and fleet footed, Janco is a fast fighter and talker. He loves to duel with swords and sing rhymes to unnerve his opponents. Known as a jokester, Janco is frequently underestimated and has surprised many with his fighting skills. His views on life are rather odd and he enjoys embellishing a good story. His partner, Ari keeps him in line and grounds him. Janco’s constant bantering and bickering with others makes for either high entertainment or pure annoyance depending on who you are, but if anyone should threaten one of his friends, Janco turns deadly serious.

Ray Winstone as General Brazell- Brazell was a loyal supported of the Commander during the take-over and for a couple years after. However, Brazell is a man of action and the years of peace annoyed him. He wants the Commander to expand Ixia’s borders, and to import more Sitian goods. His desire to exact revenge on his only son’s killer threatens to upset his grand scheme. Her death would make Brazell very happy, but the perfect opportunity hasn’t appeared. Brazell is willing to wait—he’s very good at waiting.

Nestor Carbonell as Mogkan- Mogkan is cunning and determined to gain power any way he can. He feels no regret on the actions he has taken to increase his magical abilities. And he is proud of what’s he has accomplished for the General. Although he is rather smug and can’t be trusted.

Rachel Luttrell as Irys- Irys is a magician who is hunting Yelena. Yelena does not know why, but suspects Irys is working for General Brazell. Her character is very mysterious and makes many attempts on Yelena's life. ßPin It


readerMom said...

Too bad you have to give a major spoiler to cast Major Ambrose. Good choices though.

Garett said...

Yeah, I hated doing that. I try to give away as little as possible when I post these, but I saw no way around this one. I could have left him off the list completely, but I want to hit all the important characters.

Samantha Meixian said...

wow... I am totally for Rachel Lutrell for Irys. I can live with Michelle Yeoh, too.

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