I finished Poison Study last night. It ended with a bang! I am so glad that I stuck with this book. It turned out to be a great story. In fact, I might have given this book 5 stars, if it would have had a faster start for me. I had a hard time getting into the book. A little over a 1/3 of the way through, it took off. The story starts slow, but builds up momentum like a steam train. You can guess some things in the plot, but I was happy there were some surprises at the end.
I also learned to like and respect Yelena more, the tragic heroine, as the storyline progressed. It's like people say, you shouldn't judge others from first impressions. As I learned more about Yelena, and what she had been through up to this point in her young life, I liked her more. Snyder does a great job of developing her main character into someone very likable. This is good because she was too cold and gruff for me at first. I had no reason to care about her at the beginning. That changed as the reasons for her rough demeanor and outlook were explained.
I also truly enjoyed the supporting characters in this story. They helped flesh out the storyline and added color to the novel. Some of the characters I enjoyed are the soldiers, Janco and Ari, the chief of security, Valek, the seamstress Dilana and even the mysterious and moody baker/chef Rand.
This book, though marketed as YA Fantasy, does contain some adult themes and scenes. So if you are worried at all about an early teen or tween reading this book, read it first. All in all, it was a great read and I have already started reading the second book in the series called, "Magic Study".