Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Review of Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

Simon and Schuster Books
for Young Readers
The Poison Princess (The Arcana Chronicles Book 1)
by Kresley Cole
5+ Scribbles

After a summer in a psych ward to overcome her powerful and distressing hallucinations, Evie Green returns to high school and recovers her coveted reign as one of the popular and pretty rich girls on campus.  In the midst of patching it up with her boyfriend, Brandon, and covering up her summer hospitalization with her best friends, a new group of Cajuns waltz into school, led by Jackson Deveaux, bad-boy-about-the-bayou, and despite her disgust, Evie can’t take her eyes off of him. And then “The Flash” happens, and there is virtually no one left to look at—

Call this a story, within a story, within a story—all brilliantly interwoven—past, present, and possible future, serving to titillate and captivate the reader.  Take the first chapter, which seems as far from Evie’s high school as it could possibly be; and it is, because this riveting, spine-chilling first chapter takes place in the present. The reader experiences Evie’s past, both before and after The Flash through the eyes of the two characters chatting over hot chocolate, and discovers Evie’s highly unusual and extremely useful supernatural skills.  The hook in chapter one is enough to leave readers breathless and wanting more, but moving forward into the novel (and into Evie’s past) the tension and anticipation intensifies. It doesn’t take long to see that handsome bad boy Jack is really into Evie, even though she doesn’t admit her attraction to him, at least not at first. The cat-and-mouse of their relationship is a delicious tease, and once the real feelings between these two begin to emerge, the action between them is so hot it burns the pages. (I’m talking spontaneous combustion here!) Toss in a wonderful new twist on the paranormal, characters with special skills based on the Tarot, and you have the foundation for an exciting new series.  This is one of the most original and engaging works of the paranormal I’ve read in ages—my only regret is that I have to wait until October 1st, 2013, to get the second book, Endless Knight. And since this novel has become the standard by which I’m judging all the other paranormal YA I read, I’m not quite sure I’m going to make it that long!
One last thing--this book rocks on audio! The accents are amazing and Jackson's French-Cajun is to die for!

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