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Through her courage and tenacity, Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the power of The Eyes of Tamburah. But this feat only marks the beginning of the challenges that the magical order, the Invisible Sword, faces to free the underground city of Zirdai. Though they have allies among the monks and splinter cells inside the city, Shyla knows the Invisible Sword doesn't have the streng Through her courage and tenacity, Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the power of The Eyes of Tamburah. But this feat only marks the beginning of the challenges that the magical order, the Invisible Sword, faces to free the underground city of Zirdai. Though they have allies among the monks and splinter cells inside the city, Shyla knows the Invisible Sword doesn't have the strength to win. With the group fracturing due to the strain of losses from their latest ordeal, thinly veiled suspicions and endless disagreements, it's up to Shyla to forge a new united order. When both the draconian Water Prince and brutal Heliacal Priestess learn of Shyla's new powers, life becomes even more complicated as they will stop at nothing to capture Shyla and take the magic of The Eyes for themselves. Hunted at every turn and unable to hide, Shyla and the Invisible Sword must use every resource at their command - and unearth new ones - in their race to save the city from destruction. But their enemies always seem to be one step ahead. And the cost to win the battle may be more than Shyla would ever be willing to pay...


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Through her courage and tenacity, Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the power of The Eyes of Tamburah. But this feat only marks the beginning of the challenges that the magical order, the Invisible Sword, faces to free the underground city of Zirdai. Though they have allies among the monks and splinter cells inside the city, Shyla knows the Invisible Sword doesn't have the streng Through her courage and tenacity, Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the power of The Eyes of Tamburah. But this feat only marks the beginning of the challenges that the magical order, the Invisible Sword, faces to free the underground city of Zirdai. Though they have allies among the monks and splinter cells inside the city, Shyla knows the Invisible Sword doesn't have the strength to win. With the group fracturing due to the strain of losses from their latest ordeal, thinly veiled suspicions and endless disagreements, it's up to Shyla to forge a new united order. When both the draconian Water Prince and brutal Heliacal Priestess learn of Shyla's new powers, life becomes even more complicated as they will stop at nothing to capture Shyla and take the magic of The Eyes for themselves. Hunted at every turn and unable to hide, Shyla and the Invisible Sword must use every resource at their command - and unearth new ones - in their race to save the city from destruction. But their enemies always seem to be one step ahead. And the cost to win the battle may be more than Shyla would ever be willing to pay...

30 review for The City of Zirdai

  1. 4 out of 5

    Maria V. Snyder

    This book was fun to write and picks off almost right after book 1, The Eyes of Tamburah. Unfortunately, the release date for this book has been pushed back to June 2021. Due to the pandemic and a few other issues. Not on my end - the book is written and ready to go. In fact, feel free to read the first chapter here (warning spoilers for The Eyes of Tamburah): https://www.mariavsnyder.com/books/th... This book was fun to write and picks off almost right after book 1, The Eyes of Tamburah. Unfortunately, the release date for this book has been pushed back to June 2021. Due to the pandemic and a few other issues. Not on my end - the book is written and ready to go. In fact, feel free to read the first chapter here (warning spoilers for The Eyes of Tamburah): https://www.mariavsnyder.com/books/th...

  2. 4 out of 5

    Helena Paris

    So...who do I need to bribe to get an arc of this book??? It’s been pushed back to 2021 and Netgalley has this archived. NO FAIR 😭😭😭

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sylvs (NOVELty Reads)

    ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review Potential spoilers for The Eyes of Tamburah below What a wild ride! That was quite a sequel I must admit and so much better than The Eyes of Tamburah. Although this book was much slower than the first one, it was totally worth it in the end with an ending like that! The book follows the events of its predecessor where we see Shyla take on the responsibility of being the leader of the Invisible Sword. We see her developing ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review Potential spoilers for The Eyes of Tamburah below What a wild ride! That was quite a sequel I must admit and so much better than The Eyes of Tamburah. Although this book was much slower than the first one, it was totally worth it in the end with an ending like that! The book follows the events of its predecessor where we see Shyla take on the responsibility of being the leader of the Invisible Sword. We see her developing her powers and fighting for justice and the freedom of her people. For the first 300-or-so pages I found that these scenes where we learn more about Shyla's capabilities with the eyes to be very dragged out. Sure we do see a lot of betrayal, a lot of loyalties shown and some new friendships but I just wanted the real action to begin. That action didn't come until much later in the story but it was definitely worth the wait. I thought there was more character development in general and Shyla seemed to be less power-hungry than she was alluded to in The Eyes of Tamburah. Although I understood the fact that she was trying to save her people, the eye stabbing in the first book (while important to the narrative) did make me believe she was doing it for power rather than to save her world. In City of Zirdai that scene was mentioned a lot but Shyla seemed to be less power-driven and proven herself more as a leader. In terms of romance, I still wasn't fully convinced on the relationship between Shyla and Rendor (especially since I was shipping her with Jayden the whole time). I reckon that with due time I might like him but maybe with another book he might grow on me indefinitely. I just need a bit more convincing. With the whole story structure, I found that (as mentioned previously) it was pretty slow to begin with and I wasn't necessarily invested in the story at that point. Past page 350 it started to become more fast paced and I started enjoying myself a whole lot more as the plot was coming together. I was very happy with how it all tied up and thought it was a pretty good conclusion to a great duology. All in all, I enjoyed this book. It was so much better than The Eyes of Tamburah and I found myself really enjoying how the story came together at the end. ACTUAL RATING: 3 STARS

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sam

    The City of Zirdai picks up after the events of The Eyes of Tamburah and BOY did they pick up. Maria V Snyder did a wonderful job of keeping me on the edge of my seat but buckled in enough to not feel like I was going to go over the edge. Shyla's growth throughout her journey was immense and I was so impressed with her during the book. I don't want to comment too much on the romance in the book, as this is fraught with a few plot events and I don't want to spoil anything in this book. I absolutely The City of Zirdai picks up after the events of The Eyes of Tamburah and BOY did they pick up. Maria V Snyder did a wonderful job of keeping me on the edge of my seat but buckled in enough to not feel like I was going to go over the edge. Shyla's growth throughout her journey was immense and I was so impressed with her during the book. I don't want to comment too much on the romance in the book, as this is fraught with a few plot events and I don't want to spoil anything in this book. I absolutely loved Mojag and Gurice. Their interactions throughout this book with Shyla were some of the highlights of the experience and I hope we continue to see more of them in book 3. *I was provided an ebook from NetGalley along with a physical copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, however I ended up purchasing the audiobook on release date and read from a mixture of the three.

  5. 4 out of 5

    TJ

    This review could almost be an exact replica of my review is the first book in this series, “The Eyes of Tamburah”, with the exception that the intrigue and action increases enough that the lack of any relationship building (in any area whatsoever) can be overlooked a little easier. … Although, I SO disagree with the Jaydon decision at the end. No way in the world would anyone believe him incorruptible enough to take that job.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Bec (booktineus)

    That ending got WILD. This review first appeared on my bookstagram, @booktineus The Good Things + Sequel to The Eyes of Tamburah, Maria V Snyder’s new NA fantasy series. + I really enjoyed the exploration of the magic! Shyla's new abilities with the Eye's, and the moral dilemmas they put her in, were very interesting! + We got to know the side characters better! They're some of the most fascinating and complicated characters in the story. + Like always, Maria V Snyder's writing flows so well. S That ending got WILD. This review first appeared on my bookstagram, @booktineus The Good Things + Sequel to The Eyes of Tamburah, Maria V Snyder’s new NA fantasy series. + I really enjoyed the exploration of the magic! Shyla's new abilities with the Eye's, and the moral dilemmas they put her in, were very interesting! + We got to know the side characters better! They're some of the most fascinating and complicated characters in the story. + Like always, Maria V Snyder's writing flows so well. She makes it so easy to binge a 400+ page novel in less than 24 hours. + The romance continued to be slow burn! It's the type of romance that develops over multiple books, which is my favourite type of romance to read. + The plot at the end was so intense! It took turns I wasn't expecting the story to take and ended in a place I didn't think we'd see so soon. It's such a good ending. I'm really curious to see where things go in book 3. The Not-So-Good Things - The pace is a bit slower than book 1, at least in the beginning, but I don't think it was that much of a detriment. - Once again, I wanted more Rendor! I was expecting him to be in this one more and he wasn't. Here's hoping for more of him in book three, haha! TLDR; While the start was a little bit slower than the first book in the series, I devoured this book. I loved getting to explore more of the characters and magic. I’m really curious to see where the story will go next.

  7. 5 out of 5

    MissJLovesReading

    Well, another Maria V Snyder book and another amazing read. I have read every single book Maria has ever published and I have loved each and every one. I would buy her shopping list if I could, such is my love for her books and writing. The City Of Zirdai (thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an electronic copy in exchange for an honest review) is a great follow up from The Eyes Of Tamburah and a novel filled with unique plots, exciting action and interesting characters. M Well, another Maria V Snyder book and another amazing read. I have read every single book Maria has ever published and I have loved each and every one. I would buy her shopping list if I could, such is my love for her books and writing. The City Of Zirdai (thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an electronic copy in exchange for an honest review) is a great follow up from The Eyes Of Tamburah and a novel filled with unique plots, exciting action and interesting characters. Maria's writing transports you to a world where you can feel the sand under your feet and the heat in the breeze. Where you feel the need to keep an eye on the dangerous sun and feel your heart race with the need to race through the lower levels of the city. Maria's novels always have an immense amount of action and absolutely zero 'filler', and The City Of Zirdai is no exception. So much action happens and so many exciting twists and turns occur, that I raced through this book as I usually do all of her novels. This series is so unique and so different to the majority of Young Adult novels out there today, that it creates a very exciting and intriguing feel to it when reading. The magic system is fun and continually evolving, the pacing is fantastic as usual and allows the reader to never be bored. The thoroughly enjoyable characters are changing and developing page by page, and the romance is sweet and very much a side event to the action, mystery and plot, all whilst being a romance that leaves me cheering from the sidelines with banners, streamers and maybe even some fireworks! As someone who loves a good amount of romance in my fantasy novels, I felt there was slightly too little in this one for my tastes (less than The Study Series if you've read that one), however I know many people who this would be perfect as they don't like too much. I will say, though, that the first book in this series has a lot more romance and the enemies to lovers trope with the two main characters is great fun to read and left me smiling the whole way through. As is usual from Maria V Snyder, readers are left with a bit of a cliff-hanger at the end of the book to make us want the next instalment right away, but with enough cohesion and finalisation to feel more than happy with the ending. With books like hers where you want to close your eyes and be transported to the world she created so flawlessly, to jump into a fantasy world that you love and characters you feel you know personally, it's never easy to wait for the next book but the excitement that comes with knowing another is coming helps a little! 4.5 stars!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jessica (a GREAT read)

    Maria V. Snyder returns to the exciting world of the Archives of the Invisible Sword with The City of Zirdai! Shyla thought she had problems before gaining the Eyes of Tamburah, but she's about to learn that there's always more trouble to follow! Maria spins yet another incredibly exciting tale that will have readers at the edge of their seats! Shyla and the Invisible Swords are busy making their new headquarters in a new place, Shyla has also been busy doing a lot of recruiting trying to gain as Maria V. Snyder returns to the exciting world of the Archives of the Invisible Sword with The City of Zirdai! Shyla thought she had problems before gaining the Eyes of Tamburah, but she's about to learn that there's always more trouble to follow! Maria spins yet another incredibly exciting tale that will have readers at the edge of their seats! Shyla and the Invisible Swords are busy making their new headquarters in a new place, Shyla has also been busy doing a lot of recruiting trying to gain as many new members as she can so that when the day comes to take down the Water Prince and the Priestess the Invisible Sword will be well equipped. Shyla is also getting to know her strengths and abilities with her new powers. Yet, all is not quite well. The Invisible Sword still members are still wary to trust Rendor who has been a stark figure at Shyla's side. Tensions begin to run higher and higher and soon, Rendor makes the decision to leave the Invisible Sword and Shyla doesn't stop him. If that wasn't enough, it seems every time the group tries to take a few steps forward, something bad is always waiting for them. Jayden still thinks it's Banqui's doing, laying the blame on him as being the still unknown traitor who seems to be selling them out to their enemy, but Shyla hates to think that her once best friend would do that to her, to them. A lot of time is spent trying to prepare for the looming battle with the enemies and all the harrowing encounters and betrayals and close calls that come before the epic showdown! It was heartbreaking to see Shyla and Rendor separated after they finally got together so late into the first book. Rendor does make quiet appearances here and there, always seeming to help Shyla out on the sidelines but disappearing before she can see him. There was a great deal of tension in this one! The mystery of the traitor was always at large. Shyla was dodging her enemies left and right. There was always a thick air of danger about and you never really knew what was going to happen next. Maria really knows how to draw a reader in and keep them riveted as she spins her stories. Shyla is a very likeable character. She is working so hard to stand up for the little people and really is wanting to make things better for everyone and have it just be better for all in the city. The other characters in this world are just as likeable or unlikable depending on which side they stand on. Lol. The younger kids crack me up too, like Ilhan who befriends the rats and of course Mojag. Their voices come off very youthful and defiant! You gotta love the accuracy Maria takes with their voice. Now for the romance, because you know I will always touch on that! Shyla and Rendor are separated for most of the book, yes, but you know Maria would never leave us hanging like that! And the sparse moments they get to spend together are all the more sweet and tender. They've a very a sweet and gentle romance growing between them and I always love it when things take time to build. You get to see those sweet tender moments in action and it's just so endearing. There were quite a few shocking surprises in this one! The ending is especially riddle with jaw-droppers! I am definitely looking forward to the final book of the trilogy! The title is very telling, yet what it will entail for Shyla has yet to be seen and oh I am so glad we don't have to wait a full year for this one!! Two Maria V. Snyder books in one year makes me a very happy reader! The City of Zirdai will take you on yet another adventure--literally-down under! The secretive levels that are beneath the ground to escape from the harsh sun only to encounter other horrors beneath the surface. If you've been looking for an exciting new fantasy read that differs from the usual, then look no further than the Archives of the Invisible Sword! Overall Rating 5/5 stars

  9. 4 out of 5

    Nemo (The Moonlight Library)

    This review was originally posted on The Moonlight Library I received a copy of this book from My home library, Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.I'm a little conflicting on how to review this book because on the one hand, I took literally forever to read it. It took me a month and a half, and I know that it's not the book's fault, despite it topping in at over 500 pages, because I was having a really hard time fini This review was originally posted on The Moonlight Library I received a copy of this book from My home library, Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.I'm a little conflicting on how to review this book because on the one hand, I took literally forever to read it. It took me a month and a half, and I know that it's not the book's fault, despite it topping in at over 500 pages, because I was having a really hard time finishing anything that wasn't an audiobook at the time. I struggled to read the ARC, for reasons unknown to myself, but since Snyder is one of my favourite authors I knew I would be buying a hard copy anyway. And when I got the hard copy and could dedicate some serious time to it, the pages really flew  by, because it's very readable. The writing is not out of this world gorgeous, but it's easily digestible; it's got the interesting worldbuilding of the city build deep underground to protect citizens from a killing sun; it's got a romance I dig, because the two characters and just really into each other, respect each other, and dammit, they just want to snuggle, and that's really nice. And I REALLY liked Rendor because he's basically a redeemed bad guy, and he's a big brooding barbarian with a heart of putty for Shyla, and those two things are legit like my CRACK I mean come on, he's basically my husband in fiction form. It's absolutely my favourite kind of love interest, even more than the brooding yet love-struck assassin. I just love a big brute who is gentle and kind to his lady. They make me weak in the knees. However the book also kind of suffers from middle book syndrome. What's the plot? Basically Shyla runs around and solves everyone's problems. It's incredibly fast paced: it feels like Shyla bounces around solving problem after problem, her magical powers increasing to the point of near-invulnerability (and I've spoken before about how Snyder characters tend to become overpowered to the point where everything is just so easy for them, and that's even the exact reason Yelena (view spoiler)[lost her magic in the second half of the Chronicles of Ixia (hide spoiler)] ). She constantly pushes herself to near exhaustion because absolutely everything is a priority and only she can solve all of the problems: but the issue is that she also solves them really easily, often just by thinking of something that no one else in the history of ever has been able to think. It's also the same issue I had with Ara in Sentinels of the Galaxy, in that she solved her problems just by happening to think the right thing. While I felt like The Eyes of Tamburah was kind of different to other Snyder fantasies because it didn't really focus so much on the magic, in this book, it's all about magic all the time. In the previous book, you could feasible even argue for most of it that magic was just a myth: well, in this book, it's front and centre and the characters use it all the time. It's like Book 1, no magic: Book 2, only magic. In City of Zirdai, magic uses YOU. I also had a problem with Shyla learning to use her magic consisting of, "So I can do this thing, maybe that means I can also do the complete opposite." If Shyla thinks it, then she can do it. Why she hasn't tried to fly yet, I don't know. Oh wait, she actually did that already in Book 1. While the plot was a little haphazard, there were a few twists, and I was really pleased to see that there was no cliffhanger at the end of this book.  I appreciate authors who do this, because sometimes other authors write cliffhangers that consist of simply cutting off the story too early and not actually providing the audience with a satisfying ending, with the aim of selling the next book. In The City of Zirdai, everything was wrapped up very neatly under the story arch of this book, but there are more adventures yet to come in the next. I definitely appreciate that. Ohhhh, but guys, the thing is that while I was reading it, I was REALLY enjoying it, because that's what Maria Snyder does to me, and really, that's what you want in a book! So by no means was this perfect (except Rendor, HELLO!), but I did really genuinely enjoy it, and I'm really looking forward to Shyla conquering the world in Book 3: The King of Koraha.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alison

    This second book was even better than the first! Shyla grows exponentially! You really see her start to evolve into the person she is meant to be and it’s awesome because she is strong and badass. There are so many plot twists and turns, you think everything will be ok only to have the rug yanked from under you!! And I did not predict any of them! It was ridiculously awesome. I was throughly entertained and captivated the whole time! All the characters are incredible and I’m super excited for th This second book was even better than the first! Shyla grows exponentially! You really see her start to evolve into the person she is meant to be and it’s awesome because she is strong and badass. There are so many plot twists and turns, you think everything will be ok only to have the rug yanked from under you!! And I did not predict any of them! It was ridiculously awesome. I was throughly entertained and captivated the whole time! All the characters are incredible and I’m super excited for the next book!!!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Tien

    The very long awaited sequel to The Eyes of Tamburah is finally here! In this instalment, Shyla is safely ensconced with some people who believed in her and wanted to make changes in the city, as she does. People are suffering and it is time to shake up those in power; problem is they are hidden away and very poor in resources. And it seems, there is also a mole... I loved the strong female protagonists written by this author. They are all always such empowering and inspiring characters; definite The very long awaited sequel to The Eyes of Tamburah is finally here! In this instalment, Shyla is safely ensconced with some people who believed in her and wanted to make changes in the city, as she does. People are suffering and it is time to shake up those in power; problem is they are hidden away and very poor in resources. And it seems, there is also a mole... I loved the strong female protagonists written by this author. They are all always such empowering and inspiring characters; definitely kick-ass ones! Shyla grew to be such a one in this novel. The romance is always so lovely with male protagonists who are protective but totally supportive of her having to fight her own battles. What really got me in this novel is the big twist in the middle of it. I mean, I don't know who feel betrayed most, Shyla or ME! Indeed, Maria V. Snyder lives up to her villainous author reputation. My heart hasn't recovered yet even as the ending offers such beautiful healing. There's something else in the air though... book 3 is coming and as this particular issue appears settled in this book, I'm not quite sure what will be in book 3 but I'm excited for it. My thanks to Harlequin Australia for ecopy of book via NetGalley in exchange of my honest thoughts

  12. 5 out of 5

    Valeriya Lloyd

    I enjoyed this long-awaited sequel so much! Such a beautiful book & such a great series! Shyla Sun-kissed possesses the Eyes of Tamburah that awakened with her hidden magic, sacrifice and a leap of faith. Shyla is a special one, yet she needs to learn ways of magic. She becomes a leader of the Invisible Swords organisation and planes to overthrow the Water Prince, one of two cruel rulers of Zirday city who also controls water supplies. Things aren't turning exactly the way that everyone expects, I enjoyed this long-awaited sequel so much! Such a beautiful book & such a great series! Shyla Sun-kissed possesses the Eyes of Tamburah that awakened with her hidden magic, sacrifice and a leap of faith. Shyla is a special one, yet she needs to learn ways of magic. She becomes a leader of the Invisible Swords organisation and planes to overthrow the Water Prince, one of two cruel rulers of Zirday city who also controls water supplies. Things aren't turning exactly the way that everyone expects, more sacrifices are awaiting, and all Shyla's enemies are more than one step ahead of her. This book was an emotional roller coaster. I was positively tortured by Shyla-Rendor relationships, as Maria Snyder, by all means, a queen of a slow burn romance! I was hungry for more details and was happy to read about those precious moments when Rendor rescued her in the most hopeless situations, and trust me - there are many in this book! Seriously, Shyla was using healer's services more often than I visit my favourite coffee shop! But this all wasn't for nothing. Her destiny is to protect many innocent people from the tyranny of the Heliacal Priestess and the Water Prince. About Jayden. I suspected in book one that he is going to be a character who causes many problems. I can't decide - do I like him for his devotion to the idea of protecting his people at all costs, or do I hate him for stupid and questionable methods of survival. It will be interesting to see what he does next after the events of the sequel. I look forward to reading the finale of the series and find more about Shyla's parents, as it seems we need more details about this part of the story. Oh yeah, and more steaming romance between her and Rendor for sure!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kaffeeklatsch and Books

    I loved the Eyes of Tamburah but sadly The City of Zirdai fell short for me. *SPOILER ALERT* There are so many characters that get a name and maybe a profession, but that's it. None of the side characters or villains felt fleshed out enough or had motives that were believable. The first 60% were extremely slow paced and repetitive with hardly any action. We already knew they have water shortages. We already knew people get tortured and sold out. It feels we're only following Shyla around collectin I loved the Eyes of Tamburah but sadly The City of Zirdai fell short for me. *SPOILER ALERT* There are so many characters that get a name and maybe a profession, but that's it. None of the side characters or villains felt fleshed out enough or had motives that were believable. The first 60% were extremely slow paced and repetitive with hardly any action. We already knew they have water shortages. We already knew people get tortured and sold out. It feels we're only following Shyla around collecting torques, trying to be a good leader and dealing with her relationship problems. Too much talking and thinking and not enough showing. Jayden made the most sense to me of all of the characters, redemption arc aside at the end. I didn't feel a thing when people got killed or died. After some twists the villains conveniently kill each other off or fall down a cliff at the end. I get that this is a YA novel and you don't necessarily want to dirty the hands of your MCs, but I felt a bit cheated of justice/revenge, especially when Shyla's main goal was to kill the water prince herself since the beginning. Altogether I'm sad I didn't enjoy it as much as the first book in the novel, because I loved the world building and desert 🏜️ treasure hunt feel of it. Thank you Harper Collins Australia 🦘 and netgalley for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amalia

    The City of Zirdai is book 2 of The Archives of the Invisible Sword. Following the events of The Eyes of Tamburah, Shyla must navigate her new found powers to protect the citizens of Zirdai and overthrow the Water Prince and Heliacal Priestess. But protecting her people is easier said than done... Even more treasure hunting and magic, so happy!! I’m in love with this series and Shyla. I love her personality and drive to save her people. I appreciate how Maria Snyder built her character and descri The City of Zirdai is book 2 of The Archives of the Invisible Sword. Following the events of The Eyes of Tamburah, Shyla must navigate her new found powers to protect the citizens of Zirdai and overthrow the Water Prince and Heliacal Priestess. But protecting her people is easier said than done... Even more treasure hunting and magic, so happy!! I’m in love with this series and Shyla. I love her personality and drive to save her people. I appreciate how Maria Snyder built her character and describes Shyla’s conflict between using her magic/power and ensuring that she does not become consumed by her power. I also like how Shyla did not just immediately bounce back from every injury. It took her time to recover and her injuries impacted her ability to achieve her goals. This makes the story more realistic. Stand out characters in this book, besides Shyla, were Gurice and Mojag. I loved them and want to hear so much more about their storyline. Final thought? WHY YOU GOTTA END LIKE THAT?! I need book three. Immediately. Please. Cannot wait. Please!!!! Thank you to @harlequinaus and @mariavsnyderwrites for sending me a copy of The City of Zirdai and introducing me to a series that has fast become a favourite!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Abbie

    The City of Zirdai continues on from The Eyes of Tamburah and will be released on the 16th of June. It follows Shyla in her battle for good against corrupt leaders. Wow. Like the first book this gripped me and didn't let go. It draws you in and spits you out the other side longing for more. The world built in the first book is just as vivid, with more and more details coming through and helping to build up more of the picture. The characters remain likeable and lifelike. There are moments where I The City of Zirdai continues on from The Eyes of Tamburah and will be released on the 16th of June. It follows Shyla in her battle for good against corrupt leaders. Wow. Like the first book this gripped me and didn't let go. It draws you in and spits you out the other side longing for more. The world built in the first book is just as vivid, with more and more details coming through and helping to build up more of the picture. The characters remain likeable and lifelike. There are moments where I could guess there was more going on that Shyla realised, and I wanted to shout at her. The story is so vivid it feels like i lived it This book broke my heart and lifted it up again. It is the story of a strong woman growing into her self and her power. It is a story of corruption, deceit, and a battle of good versus evil. I loved it and cant wait for the next installment. 5 stars. Highly recommended.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Blue

    Want to see more... Bookstagram Website Thank you Harper Collins Australia for this book in exchange for an honest review I think the whole time that I have been on bookstagram I have heard nothing but amazing things about Maria’s work and after staying up extremely late to read this one, I can understand why. I like to think of myself as a bear and hibernation occurs at night-time, so for a book to keep me up and wide awake, it is damn interesting. If you are after a fast-paced fantasy series th Want to see more... Bookstagram Website Thank you Harper Collins Australia for this book in exchange for an honest review I think the whole time that I have been on bookstagram I have heard nothing but amazing things about Maria’s work and after staying up extremely late to read this one, I can understand why. I like to think of myself as a bear and hibernation occurs at night-time, so for a book to keep me up and wide awake, it is damn interesting. If you are after a fast-paced fantasy series that will have you on your knees with plot twists, turn of events at the mercy of beloved characters, than this is the kind of book that you want to be reading!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sian

    4.25 ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Louisa

    Loved reading this book, it was a fantastic read, and well worth the wait, so much happens! I can't wait for the 3rd book, which is only a couple of months away! Loved reading this book, it was a fantastic read, and well worth the wait, so much happens! I can't wait for the 3rd book, which is only a couple of months away!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jane

    Took me awhile, but the book was enjoyable even though the heroine pissed me off at times. I have plenty of obtuse two year olds in my life so I don't quite relish reading about such heroines, even though a bit older ones. Took me awhile, but the book was enjoyable even though the heroine pissed me off at times. I have plenty of obtuse two year olds in my life so I don't quite relish reading about such heroines, even though a bit older ones.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    (ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review) I love everything I‘ve ever read by Maria V Snyder, but I think this series is my favourite. The world that she has created is richly imagined, and nicely different to many standard fantasy world-building tropes. As usual, Snyder’s writing style is engaging and the plot moves along at a good pace. City of Zirdai is a solid ‘book two’, with wonderful character development and an expansion of the world, and the stakes. Our protagonist, Shy (ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review) I love everything I‘ve ever read by Maria V Snyder, but I think this series is my favourite. The world that she has created is richly imagined, and nicely different to many standard fantasy world-building tropes. As usual, Snyder’s writing style is engaging and the plot moves along at a good pace. City of Zirdai is a solid ‘book two’, with wonderful character development and an expansion of the world, and the stakes. Our protagonist, Shyla Sun-Kissed, is also well written. I love following her journey, both in terms of the plot and how she develops as a character. She’s trying her best, but still makes mistakes, she loves and wants and feels the weight of her burdens, and... gosh she really needs a nice relaxing holiday! All in all, I highly recommend this series for anyone who loves fantasy YA!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kylie

    With thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for my ARC in exchange of a fair review. Yet another extremely well written title by MVS, where world building, character development and the story itself combine to make for an immersive, thoroughly enjoyable reader experience. In this title we see Shyla establishing her leadership of the Invisible Swords, expanding their operations and continuing in her quest to free the people of the city of Zirdai from its corrupt rulers.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Mecca-Amirah Jackson

    1/8/2021 Ummmm need this book like yesterday 2/7/2020 -Yassssssssssss

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lorraine

    The City of Zirdai is the second in the “Archives of the Invisible Sword” series, and it isn’t going to disappoint the readers who’ve been waiting for it eagerly. Empathetic characterisation, vivid world building and a strong plot will engage pretty much every reader. Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the Eyes of Tamburah, and is delighting in discovering her magic. She is less delighted by the responsibilities she’s acquired, becoming the leader of the Invisible Swords. Freeing the underground city of The City of Zirdai is the second in the “Archives of the Invisible Sword” series, and it isn’t going to disappoint the readers who’ve been waiting for it eagerly. Empathetic characterisation, vivid world building and a strong plot will engage pretty much every reader. Shyla Sun-Kissed has awoken the Eyes of Tamburah, and is delighting in discovering her magic. She is less delighted by the responsibilities she’s acquired, becoming the leader of the Invisible Swords. Freeing the underground city of Zirdai from the brutal reign of the Water Prince and the Heliacal Priestess is their first aim, and it won’t be easy. They have allies, but also enemies aplenty. It’s hard to stay invisible when almost everyone is hunting you. The order of the Invisible Sword is small, and they’ll need to use cunning and intelligence to overcome the might of the Water Prince and the Priestess. Shyla feels beset on all sides. She must learn how to use her magic, learn how to be a good leader, plan an effective overthrow (preferably without spilling too much blood), and oh yes, sort out her relationship with Rendor. As noted, The City of Zirdai is the second in a series, and I think it might be difficult for new readers to follow all aspects of it. The story plunges right in, more or less where volume one left off, and provides little initial background to what’s gone before. Similarly, there’s an assumption that you know the characters, including their backgrounds and relationships to each other. So if you’re new to the series, you could pick up on the plot and action, but huge chunks would make only limited sense. This is a really enjoyable series, so I’d strongly recommend saving yourself some puzzling and start with volume one (The Eyes of Tamburah. A link to my review of this is below). Overall I felt that this volume focused more on the action and on advancing the plot than on character development. Character development is not ignored; Shyla in particular is stepping up into her role as a leader. It’s just that it felt less important here than other aspects of the novel. The action is fast moving and well portrayed, and does a lot to advance the plot. Quite a few plot strands were laid down in volume one, and Snyder pays some attention to each. Indeed, several appear to be completely resolved in the course of this novel. Readers who’ve been waiting eagerly to find out what happens next won’t be disappointed; indeed, some will get a lot more than they bargained for. This is not a leisurely paced series – lots happens in a short space of time. It’s all credible and important, though. Although characterisation has been a real strength in many of Snyder’s other novels, here I felt it took a bit of a back seat to the plot. The characters are empathetic and well drawn, but in this installment at least, they don’t change much. Perhaps they’re all too busy charging around, but with most I felt that I didn’t learn anything new about them. Perhaps this is partly because Shyla started the series with few connections; we don’t see her growing or changing in relation to previous connections. There’s no doubt, though, that this was an enjoyable novel to read. The characters were engaging, whether they changed much or not, and the plot was a substantial extension of the first in the series. The world building is also vivid, although again I felt that new readers might struggle with some aspects of it. It’s credible and consistent, and strongly portrayed. Continuing readers should enjoy and appreciate this, and are unlikely to be bothered much by the issues I’ve pointed out here. New readers would do better to read The Eyes of Tamburah first, but if they insist, will find this quite a strong action novel regardless of minor plot confusions because they’re not familiar with the first novel. If you enjoyed this review, please visit www.otherdreamsotherlives.home.blog to read more. You may like to read my review of the first in the series: https://otherdreamsotherlives.home.bl...

  24. 4 out of 5

    Adjectiveplusnoun

    I received a free ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own. If you enjoy this review, please consider visiting my blog for more I didn’t realise this was the second book in a series when I requested it, and I prefer to read series in order. That being said, I have read books out of order before and followed and appreciated the plot, so I think my opinion on this book is still valid. I did not enjoy The City of Zirdai overall. There were parts of the book I I received a free ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own. If you enjoy this review, please consider visiting my blog for more I didn’t realise this was the second book in a series when I requested it, and I prefer to read series in order. That being said, I have read books out of order before and followed and appreciated the plot, so I think my opinion on this book is still valid. I did not enjoy The City of Zirdai overall. There were parts of the book I enjoyed, but I think the book was conceived far more as book two in a series, than as a story in its own right. The characters in this novel often seemed poorly motivated. The society of the Invisible Sword could have been a high point of the book—I’m a big fan of the found family trope and I think the Invisible Sword could have been that. However, perhaps because I didn’t know the characters already, I found their interactions to be surface level and unrealistic. Shyla was not an interesting main character, and I thought her motivations were usually weak. Her relationships never rang true, and her emotional struggles were difficult to empathise with. The magic and spiritual system of the world was hazy and at times, overly convenient, again undermining the tension of the book and ability for the plot to matter. Jayden was a well-written character, and I thought the friction he had with Shyla was believable and interesting. I also liked his interactions with Mojag, and thought their interactions were heart-warming. Rendor’s character arc was also interesting, and I wish he and Jayden had had more to do with the plot. Some of the social issues covered in the book could have been interesting and thought provoking, done correctly, but instead the guards and priests that served as supporting antagonists never seemed believable as real people. The priestess and the prince likewise weren’t fleshed out very much in this novel, and as I have not read book one, you may struggle to see them as compelling antagonists. This made the abuses of power, bias towards the ‘sun kissed’ (the issue of having what seems to be a blond girl get discriminated against for her hair colour is something I don’t even want to get into) and struggles to form a functioning government instead seem like flimsy reasons to progress the plot. There were quite a few twists that were genuinely unexpected towards the end of the book, but as I had no real investment in the characters or seeing their goals met, I didn’t really care. The book was slow at times, and even when the plot was fast-paced, I found myself getting bored and having to struggle to want to continue. I have no doubt that I would have enjoyed this book more had I read book one, but judged on its own merits, I do not think The City of Zirdai holds up. If you are interested in reading Maria V Snyder’s work, I very much enjoyed her Study novels, and her Healer series is also one I would recommend. If you read The Eyes of Tamburah and enjoyed it, chances are you’ll appreciate learning what happens to the characters in The City of Zirdai. This book releases on the 21st June.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Chiara

    A copy of this novel was provided for review. The City of Zirdai is the second book in Snyder’s latest YA/adult crossover fantasy series, The Archives of the Invisible Sword. Unlike a lot of middle books in a trilogy that suffer from what is commonly called Second Book Syndrome, The City of Zirdai did not succumb to any of those problems. The pacing didn’t lag, the relationships didn’t suffer, and the development didn’t stagnate. In fact, it was the opposite of these three things that occurred in A copy of this novel was provided for review. The City of Zirdai is the second book in Snyder’s latest YA/adult crossover fantasy series, The Archives of the Invisible Sword. Unlike a lot of middle books in a trilogy that suffer from what is commonly called Second Book Syndrome, The City of Zirdai did not succumb to any of those problems. The pacing didn’t lag, the relationships didn’t suffer, and the development didn’t stagnate. In fact, it was the opposite of these three things that occurred in The City of Zirdai. After the first book in the series, The Eyes of Tamburah, I really wanted to get to know the characters that had been introduced. Except for Shyla, none of them were around a lot in The Eyes of Tamburah so I was left wanting a bit more, especially when it came to Shyla and Rendor’s relationship. In The City of Zirdai, Snyder really took the time to let the reader get to know all the characters she’d introduced us to in that first book, as well as their pasts, and the motivations for their actions, especially their involvement with the Invisible Sword. I am always one for character development so this was a huge positive in the book for me. Another positive was the storyline. In the first book a lot of the story included Shyla running from situation to situation, which set a good pace but also left me wanting a steadier storyline at the same time. There was definitely action abound in The City of Zirdai, but between these action scenes the overarching storyline was given time to develop, and the scope of the mission of the Invisible Sword became clearer. Towards the end I thought that everything was going to be wrapped up perfectly but there were 80 more pages to go, which is a particular kind of bookish pain! But it certainly left me looking forward to what book three is going to bring. Lastly, the relationship between Shyla and Rendor grew a lot in The City of Zirdai. It went from attraction to something deeper, and it took Shyla a while to get to that point. She has her own demons of the past to overcome, as does Rendor, and the two of them are working through them together. It was quite lovely to see Shyla finally trust someone with her heart, and have someone treat it tenderly. However, Rendor isn’t the only one who provides Shyla with support and love, and I adored seeing her friendship and family group grow and solidify throughout the novel. I can’t wait to see Shyla and Rendor’s relationship grow even more in book three! If you’re a fan of Snyder’s previous fantasy novels, archaeology, unique fantasy systems, magic, secret societies, or all of the above then The Archives of the Invisible Sword is definitely a series you should try! © 2021, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved. trigger warning: use of ableist language, explosions, child abuse, multiple deaths, multiple murders, attempted murder, torture, emotional blackmail, blood and gore

  26. 4 out of 5

    Madeline

    I confess I finished this book a bit over a week ago, but have been procrastinating on writing a review. Thanks/sorry to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC. The City of Zirdai is the second in a planned trilogy by Ms Snyder. The series is set in a really fascinating world where the surface is largely uninhabitable for periods of the day (which is measured in angles, a pretty neat device) when the sun is at it's peak. Life is lived underground and cities have dozens of levels, with the wealt I confess I finished this book a bit over a week ago, but have been procrastinating on writing a review. Thanks/sorry to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC. The City of Zirdai is the second in a planned trilogy by Ms Snyder. The series is set in a really fascinating world where the surface is largely uninhabitable for periods of the day (which is measured in angles, a pretty neat device) when the sun is at it's peak. Life is lived underground and cities have dozens of levels, with the wealthiest parts of society living lowest down - protected from the heat and closer to the water source. Unsurprisingly, water is a precious commodity in this environment and is ruthlessly controlled by the Water Prince. Who is, not a spoiler, a bit of a despot. This book continues the story of Shayla and her experiences with learning about her emerging talents and the challenges of running an organisation. They quest to deal with the injustices rampant in Zirdai. And that's all I can say about this book. I love the setting, but the plot and characters don't live up to the world Ms Snyder has created. I could not tell you what really happened in the plot, or why. Also, I struggled to remember any of the characters, and there are a lot. None stood out as fully formed, even Shayla our heroine was largely two dimensional. Not a real spoiler, but someone dies towards the end in what was clearly intended to be a sad and meaningful moment, but I could not for the life of me remember who they were. I felt that way about pretty much all of the characters. Shayla frequently mentioned her missing friend, Banqui, but again, could not remember who he was from the first book and just felt a little irritated when he was mentioned. Despite the slightly harsh words above, I will read the third in the series. I like the setting so much that I hope the other issues can be pulled together for the final chapter of the story. Whatever that story is.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Callon

    The City of Zirdai picks up soon after the first book, with Shyla rebuilding the Invisible Swords. I enjoyed the first book, and enjoyed this just as much. Going back down into Zirdai, the Invisible Swords need to make themselves as independent as they can, from the city and from the monks, lest they put them in danger. I thought for the most part, it was well done. I enjoyed seeing how Shyla would resolve the problems facing her, both as an individual and as the leader of a secret organisation. The City of Zirdai picks up soon after the first book, with Shyla rebuilding the Invisible Swords. I enjoyed the first book, and enjoyed this just as much. Going back down into Zirdai, the Invisible Swords need to make themselves as independent as they can, from the city and from the monks, lest they put them in danger. I thought for the most part, it was well done. I enjoyed seeing how Shyla would resolve the problems facing her, both as an individual and as the leader of a secret organisation. My one main issue with this would be that the pacing was fairly rapid, essentially meaning that the story doesn't lull as much as others can. While this would usually be a good things, a lot is happening constantly here, and the story tends to jump from one plot line to the other in quick succession. In doing so, I felt that some of the plot elements that were being developed, specifically in regards to rebuilding the Invisible Swords, didn't actually eventuate, and were to a degree unnecessary. It's not that they needed to be removed necessarily, more that they could have been introduced and developed in a different way, so that they were more points of interest rather than plot points. Without giving too much away, it was in regards to the relocation and reconstruction of the Invisible Swords base, with ideas being developed, but not actually being actioned, which fair the story is in a limited time. But I feel construction could have at least been started, since time was taken to explore solutions. In saying that though, I really enjoyed this, and look forward to reading more. If you have read the first one, definitely continue on with the series. If you have read and enjoyed anything else Maria V. Snyder has written, it's worth picking up this series as well. ARC copy received

  28. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Sheerly amazing. Though it must be said that this is the second book in a trilogy. To truly appreciate this book you need to read the first one, “The Eyes of Tamburah.” Snyder did a phenomenal job with “The Eyes of Tamburah,” creating a dystopian world that both fits into the familiar YA/NA niche while also bringing something new to the genre. In the sequel, she expands on this new world, giving it more dimension and fleshing out the world in which our protagonist, Shyla, lives. We get to experien Sheerly amazing. Though it must be said that this is the second book in a trilogy. To truly appreciate this book you need to read the first one, “The Eyes of Tamburah.” Snyder did a phenomenal job with “The Eyes of Tamburah,” creating a dystopian world that both fits into the familiar YA/NA niche while also bringing something new to the genre. In the sequel, she expands on this new world, giving it more dimension and fleshing out the world in which our protagonist, Shyla, lives. We get to experience Shyla’s trepidation about her new powers as well as her discovery of how powerful she is without them. Shyla may be an adult, but we get to see her grow as a person and learn to accept help when it’s needed. This sequel enhances her as a character by showing her ingenuity, empathy, and diligent work to better those around her. And while there is a romance subplot, it doesn’t overwhelm the overall story of Shyla embracing her strength. We also get to see more of the Invisible Sword and learn how they operate, fighting against the unjust tyranny in Koraha. This book reads almost like a finale until the very end. No spoilers, but there are some quite satisfying conclusions to some storylines/plot threads from the first novel. It DOES end on a bit of a cliffhanger, but it’s one the does not detract from the overall story. Overall, this book earned 5 stars. Thank you to the author for providing me with an advanced reading copy.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Emily Rainsford

    This is one of those reviews I struggle to write because I really enjoyed this book and I'm not really sure what else to say about that lol! I love the unique world Snyder has created. The story is full of action and the end gets pretty wild and full of betrayals and twists and turns. There's a character who gets forgiven who I don't think should have been, but alas. I'm waiting for that to come back and bite them on the bum honestly. I still struggle to feel any chemistry between Shyla and Rendo This is one of those reviews I struggle to write because I really enjoyed this book and I'm not really sure what else to say about that lol! I love the unique world Snyder has created. The story is full of action and the end gets pretty wild and full of betrayals and twists and turns. There's a character who gets forgiven who I don't think should have been, but alas. I'm waiting for that to come back and bite them on the bum honestly. I still struggle to feel any chemistry between Shyla and Rendor, there always seemed to be so much more spark with Jayden. And a lot of the secondary characters all just blurred together and weren't very well defined, like Elek, Ximen, Jaft etc. Nonetheless, somehow I find myself forgiving all that because they're just kind of quirky books and I've enjoyed them anyway. Snyder has a way of ending chapters right in the middle of something happening that makes you just-one-more-chapter yourself into the early hours. The ending leaves a biggggg thread hanging and I can't wait for the third book!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nina {ᴡᴏʀᴅs ᴀɴᴅ ᴡᴀᴛᴇʀ}

    Many thanks to Netgalley and Harlequin Australia for the arc in exchange for an honest review. While I don't have time to write a detailed review now, the sequel to the Eyes of Tamburah is just as good. But it's also much like the first book, action packed, a lot of moving between the city and various other main locations, and a few kidnappings and people being locked up again. I did very much enjoy the sequel - a biased opinion based on my love for Snyder's books. It does have it's flaws. The pa Many thanks to Netgalley and Harlequin Australia for the arc in exchange for an honest review. While I don't have time to write a detailed review now, the sequel to the Eyes of Tamburah is just as good. But it's also much like the first book, action packed, a lot of moving between the city and various other main locations, and a few kidnappings and people being locked up again. I did very much enjoy the sequel - a biased opinion based on my love for Snyder's books. It does have it's flaws. The pacing is fast, so fast that so many things happen and you're in one and then out before you know it. Shylah is also super proactive, which is a good and bad thing. Good because she does things and doesn't waste time about it. Bad because it makes you wonder just how complex everything should be if she could organise for it to be cracked open easily. Nonetheless, it all comes together well enough. A much more comprehensive review soon!

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