Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Review: Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

Poison Princess by Kresley Cole
Series: The Arcana Chronicles, Book #1
Published: October 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers
369 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Post-apocalyptic paranormal thriller
Acquired this book: From the library
Warning: May contain spoilers
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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…


Tarot and Cajuns and zombies, oh my!

This was the first book I’d read by Ms Cole and it was hard to believe it was her first YA book. Fascinatingly unique, action-packed, dark, and often disturbing, Poison Princess was unlike anything I’ve ever read.

To say the plot of this book was original would be an understatement. It’s rare in post-apocalyptic fiction to see the world both before and after the end, but in Poison Princess we get a look at the world in the days leading up to the apocalypse (the Flash), and the months afterward. I’m not going to lie – I found it terrifying. I’m honestly surprised I didn’t have nightmares. It was so well executed and believable, and the whole thing was vivid, disturbing, and gruesome, but in the best way possible.

I absolutely loved Ms Cole’s writing style. It was so fresh, and, like the story itself, it was unlike anything I’ve come across. She had a way of wording things that was so unique, whether it was during descriptions or dialogue, and it made me enjoy the story even more.

Evie, the main character, grows a lot through the course of the story. In the beginning she’s this rich kid who’s kind of spoiled, and is the typical pretty cheerleader who can be really snobby, but she has this huge secret weighing on her - she thinks she’s mentally ill. She slowly progresses into a character you can admire and root for. She gets stronger and smarter, and while she still has her moments, she was overall very likeable and her voice felt very authentic. All of her emotions come across as very genuine, and really resonate on the page, whether it’s fear, anger, hopelessness, or determination.

Jack, the love interest in the story is…well, he’s something else. I alternately loved and hated him. He was so crude and controlling and even cruel at times, but he was clearly a product of a horrible beginning, so who could blame him really? He was a definite alpha male and even during those times I wanted to punch him, it didn’t stop me from thinking he was sexy as hell. He was protective and fierce, and even when he wanted to throttle Evie, his first instinct (and first priority) was always to keep her safe. Their relationship is full of misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and sexual tension.

I thought the tarot aspect was fascinating. It was all so tightly woven and complex, and I was eager to see how everything would turn out. With each new revelation, I became more and more engrossed in the story. I can't wait to find out what happens in the next installment.

Poison Princess is one of the best post-apocalyptic books I’ve read. It has something for everyone - it’s frightening, realistic, sexy, funny, romantic, thrilling, and so much more. With characters that leap of the page, a compelling plot, and lots of action, Poison Princess is a must read. 

Have you read Poison Princess? What did you think? Have you read any of Kresley Cole's other books? 


  1. I also enjoyed this book. It was so different from anything else I've read.

  2. I've read A Hunger Like No Other, one of Kresley's adult novels, and I really liked it. But this one didn't work for me. The way that the POVs were set annoys me, possibly because of the way the time line bounced around? It made it hard for me to figure out WHERE Evie was in her evolution as a character, which made it hard for me to feel she was consistent. There was also a bit too much backstory leading up to everything. In the end I got bored and DNF'd, which is really too bad because the tarot premise seemed really original to me. Glad you liked it, though. :)

  3. This sounds worth picking up. Originality and post-apocalyptic with the before and after- I'm in.


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