02 October 2012

ARC Review: Kresley Cole - Poison Princess

Format: Hardcover, 384 pages
Published October 2nd 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for YA
ISBN 1442436646 (ISBN13: 9781442436640)
Language: English
Title: Poison Princess
Series: The Arcana Chronicles #1
Genre: Young Adult
ARC provided by author for review.

Summary (Goodreads)
#1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole introduces The Arcana Chronicles, post-apocalyptic tales filled with riveting action, the dark mysticism of Tarot cards, and breathtaking romance.

She could save the world—or destroy it.
Sixteen year old Evangeline “Evie” Greene leads a charmed life, until she begins experiencing horrifying hallucinations. When an apocalyptic event decimates her Louisiana hometown, Evie realizes her hallucinations were actually visions of the future—and they’re still happening. Fighting for her life and desperate for answers, she must turn to her wrong-side-of-the-bayou classmate: Jack Deveaux.

But she can’t do either alone.
With his mile-long rap sheet, wicked grin, and bad attitude, Jack is like no boy Evie has ever known. Even though he once scorned her and everything she represented, he agrees to protect Evie on her quest. She knows she can’t totally depend on Jack. If he ever cast that wicked grin her way, could she possibly resist him?

Who can Evie trust?
As Jack and Evie race to find the source of her visions, they meet others who have gotten the same call. An ancient prophesy is being played out, and Evie is not the only one with special powers. A group of twenty-two teens has been chosen to reenact the ultimate battle between good and evil. But it’s not always clear who is on which side….

As a woman who dabbles with Tarot cards on occasion I was instantly intrigued by the blurb of Poison Princess. As an avid reader of the Immortal After Dark series I already knew I love Kresley Cole’s imagination, but would she be able to deliver in the Young Adult genre? Well, that question was answered in the first chapter because the premise was instantly raising a multitude in questions and spine-chilling tension. The scene was set with an invitation by Arthur for Evie to come into his home for some food. After the flash, food was scarce and all he wanted was Evie’s story. And what a story it was.

Via the first person narrative Evie came to life in the most intimate of ways. Her every thought, feeling and inner dialogues portrayed a young woman who was confused but wanted answers. I was irrevocable drawn into Evie’s world. The mystery of her nightmares created a fantastic tension and evoked an ominous feeling about what was to happen. In the beginning Evie tried desperately to hold on to a sense of normalcy. I got a glimpse of what her life was before her nightmares. Classes, boyfriend, conversations with friends, partying but underneath it all there was that warning which lied within her nightmares. The nightmares are violent and dark giving me the shivers as Evie experiences them.

The days leading up to the Flash was riddled with questions and warnings which made rhyme nor reason for Evie. I was absolutely riveted to the pages with all this hair raising tension of what was to come and the questions I wanted to have answered, just like Evie. Jackson, was another mystery I wanted to unravel. His Cajun good looks, his chip on his shoulder, mannerism and his accent, it all completed a picture of a young man who knew life could be rough. After the Flash he could be overbearing, wanting things his way but he also wanted to protect and keep Evie safe. There is so much more to Jackson than meets the eye.

Kresley Cole gave the cast of characters tremendous depth, are well-defined and just leap of the pages. The rich, imaginative descriptions created a setting with a grim atmosphere and I could feel the desperation radiating from the characters who survived the Flash. I could sense the fear and the determination from Jackson and Evie, who travel together to find Evie’s grandmother. The dangers emanating from various sources was spine-chilling and made my heart beat faster during various scenes. I couldn’t get enough of the stage set by Kresley Cole and the characters who had to deal with this new world and its dangers.

The fantasy element of the Arcana is masterly done. From the get-go, Kresley Cole gradually introduces the reader in to the what the Arcana entails. Enough is explained to understand and yet at the same time there is so much mystery surrounding it, I kept hungering for more information. Throughout Poison Princess a steady supporting cast was introduced. Selena, Matthew, Finneas, I have a feeling they are here to stay and while some hold my favor over others they add interesting possibilities!

Evie’s interaction with Jackson sizzled and there’s definitely an inexplicable push-pull there between like and dislike. The attraction brims with a sensual tension and there is a promise for deeper feelings but I feel the romance is merely beginning at the end of Poison Princess. The gripping story instantly hooked me with the back and forth in timeline. It might take some readers getting used to but after a while it creates a layered storytelling that appeals to the imagination. The road trip lost somewhat in tension in the middle but picked up after a few chapters. The ending was mind blowing good and it will make one scream for more!!! It showed the incredible development Evie already went through in Poison Princess and it boggled my mind where she is going to. I’m very eager to find out!

Kresley Cole gave us another memorable cast of characters, living in a richly envisioned post-apocalyptic world with one of the most engaging heroine´s I´ve met in 2012. Evie will take the reader on an unforgettable journey!

4.5 stars

Quote Jackson-Evie:
“I asked you a question. Why you want to switch?” “Fine. Because when you drove by us Monday, you were leering at me like a registered SO.” “A blonde pulls up her skirt and bends over for me? I’m goan to pay attention.” My eyes darted. Had anyone heard that? Under my breath, I snapped, “I was not bending over for you!” “You been leering at me just as much, girl.
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  1. Lol I was not allowed access to your blog at the office! Luckily, no problems with that at home. Thanks for the great review, I did pre order this one, and now I am actually looking forward to reading it.


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