REVIEW by CC: Poison Princess (The Arcana Chronicles #1) by Kresley Cole (@KresleyCole , @RestlessReader)

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.

Poision Princess

Poison Princess is stunning, fresh, and spectacular. Only a select few books over the last few years can compare to the level of entertainment this novel holds. Cole takes an already interesting—barely explored—idea and transforms it into an exceptionally gripping concept. I keep asking myself where was Kresley Cole hiding in my TBR pile, and why didn’t I find her books a lot sooner?? What really amazes me about Poison Princess is my gradual reaction and how I went from kind of liking it to absolutely riveted by each word. I haven’t gotten this excited for a series in awhile, and The Arcana Chronicles has me amped up for more.

Poison Princess is a composition of fantasy, romance, and dystopia. It swiftly annihilates most of the YA books I’ve read because it fulfills many of my reading expectations. In the course of about 400 pages it has a lot of much-needed character development, loads of action, a dosage of romance, a multitude of plot twists, and a bunch of mysterious characters. The list goes on and on in the pros column. Cole takes an approach that’s never been seen before in conjunction with older teens possessing abilities because there’s much more to it than that. There is an large supply of history and importance tagged along with the fantasy aspects that help you understand the world better. Repeatedly I remain blasé with the YA genre not because of the writing but because authors choose to reuse the same ideas. It gets to a point where I feel like I’ve read that story a thousand times before, meanwhile there are some who take risks and write about different topics that aren’t vampires, werewolves and other common subjects. I look up to those authors so much because of their imagination and creativity. It goes to show that originality isn’t dead and passion for new ideas is still out there. Poison Princess gets away from that and wanders into the dark and twisted world Cole imagined—and it’s magnificent.

Evangeline “Evie” Greene has popularity, beauty, wealth, a flawless boyfriend, and everything she could ever want. If not for her vivid hallucinations and nightmares everything would be perfect—but it isn’t. After fighting her crazy visions and returning to high school from break she’s determined to be a normal teenage girl living her glamorous life, that is until a Cajun boy enrolls at her school. Jackson Deveaux is all around bad news – his vehicle of choice? A motorcycle. His way of communicating? Not very polite. Jack’s reputation? Extremely bad. Even though he sets Evie off she can’t stay away from him, but before she can understand her feelings for Jack her entire world goes straight to hell. Those horrifying visions she tried to block out has finally come to life leaving most of the world dead and gone. It almost seems like a miracle when Evie discovers Jackson survived and that he wants to protect her and help her get the answers she’s desperately in search of, but with Evie’s prophetic sight comes a shocking discovery she needs to hide from him, and everyone else. The world ending as everyone knows it is only the beginning.

At times Evie did get on my nerves in the beginning because she acted preppy, pampered, and shallow. I did a lot of mental screaming and cursing, and then when things start getting intense and the reader more engrossed she breaks away from that behavior. It was the biggest relief and led to me completely being able to enjoy the story the way it was meant to. She really does change and becomes someone respectable. Jackson on the other-hand didn’t have a lot of growth going on but it worked, I liked him fine just the way he was: tough as nails, tremendously hot, and an alpha male type. Though he did have his moments where he deserved to be slapped, I enjoyed his and Evie’s complicated relationship. They really don’t get on in the beginning and when everything falls apart they are stuck relying on each other and that forms a camaraderie. Then there’s Evie’s unpredictable abilities that are growing more unstable, and half of the time she feels like she’s loosing it and it adds a million layers of depth to her actions. I loved seeing the struggle between being normal and being something else. Although I found a few sections to be confusing, by the end the confusion clears up and it all starts to make sense when it comes to a point. Don’t let that slow you down because it’s explained later. The other characters have their own special talents and how they all fit together in the grand scheme of things is brilliant.

Poison Princess is an endless thrill, full of deceit, and excitement. It spirals into a dark, sexy, and addicting read. There are powerful allies, many secrets, concealed enemies, and a wickedly insane ending. If you aren’t one for cliffhangers you need to have the sequel at the ready because you will want—no—need it! The Arcana Chronicles is cleverly written, craftily plotted, and a rare treat. Recommended for mature young adults for violence, mild language, and some adult content.

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Poision PrincessPOISON PRINCESS
The Arcana Chronicles #1

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