Finally read the book everyone liked. Yes, it is as kickass as other readers have claimed. I'm being kind of petty in not giving that perfect extra star but I felt the flaws in the book deeply. To start off with, I love love LOVE the characters. Yelena was someone hard to relate to but cool enough to know. Her saving grace was her determination to learn and hone in on her weaknesses. She doesn't automatically reject everyone's words and she listens and contemplates on it. Yelena is calculating and always aware and on guard. She knows she has talents and focuses on one problem at a time. A very competent person and a great ally. To have such an intriguing MC really made this book enjoyable.
The high fantasy also helped a lot, not to mention Valek. Okay, I loved Valek and all his silly acts. His interaction with Yelena was just so endearing and adorable. They really warmed up to each other near the end of the book and I loved to see how they both developed throughout the story. He is the best example of a hero that comes across as an anti-hero, yet exudes dashing qualities. He is not an ass. Nor an arrogant prissy. Or a freaking Ken doll. His not-so-perfect demeanor and interesting personality really made this book fun to read. Every moment with Valek in it had a certain quirk and bounce.
So yes I really enjoyed this book and I may have had some problems with the rushed ending but I did read it til the buttcrack of dawn. I'm ambivalent about reading Magic Study so I may as well skip it and try Synder's Touch of Power