TITLE: Poison Princess
SERIES: The Arcana Chronicles #1
AUTHOR: Kresley Cole
PUBLICATION DATE: October 2, 2012
PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc
PAGES: 369 pages
RATING: 4 stars
Fuck. This book has got me so turned around that I can’t even decide what to rate it! 1 star because it had a terrible ending? 5 stars because up until the end, I was enraptured? 4 stars because I can’t give a book with that bad of an ending 5? 3 stars because the ending pissed me off so badly I wanted to scream it from the rooftops for unsuspecting innocents to wait until the rest of the series is out before attempting it? I really don’t have a clue. I’m going with 3…..for now.
Evie Greene is little miss popular. Pretty blonde cheerleader with friends aplenty and a senior boyfriend, she’ll do anything to keep them from finding out that she was locked in a mental ward all summer because she can’t stop having delusions of a red witch killing people and the world ending. Released to go back to school, Evie has trouble telling what is real and what isn’t. Hiding the hallucinations is becoming extremely difficult when she doesn’t know if they are real or not. Then the Flash happens. Guess what Evie? Those apocalyptic visions you’ve been having were predictions, premonitions of what was to come. Now most of the world’s population (along with a large portion of the water supply) are gone. With trouble on the way, Evie is forced to leave town with Jackson, the Cajun who is great a pushing her buttons. The destination? The Outer Banks in North Carolina, where Evie’s Grandmother is (hopefully) still alive and waiting to help Evie with her destiny.
This book was up and down for me. As soon as Evie starts telling her tale about life before the Flash, I instantly disliked her. She was one of those popular bitches who thinks she is kind and nice to everyone, but really she’s a snob. The minute Jackson shows up with his friends, who thanks to new policies now have to go to her school, she is quick to turn up her nose. The more I got to see of her life, the more tolerant I became, but I didn’t start to like her or sympathize with her until after the Flash.
Then there is Jackson, who I did like quite a bit. Lewd and cocky, with a soft intelligent side underneath, not to mention devilish good looks, he had me at the proverbial hello. The only think I couldn’t understand about him is what attracted him to Evie….well besides the busty cheerleader look. Beyond her ability to speak French (which is what the Cajun’s speak naturally), they have nothing in common and yet he stil wants her. Still, even though I didn’t fully understand the attraction, Kresley was able to write sizzling tension and chemistry between the two once they start on their journey. I was all for them being together, pushing for it and setting my mind that it was going to happen. Did it? ****SPOILER****FUCK NO! Well, yes for a short bit, then no again, then yes, then goddammit no! I’ll get more in to the specifics of the no later.****END SPOILER****
I’ve never read a book by this author before, but I’ll give her props for her story telling ability. This books is told mostly from Evie’s perspective, but in the beginning, it starts out with th is man named Arthur trying to lure Evie into his house so he can chain her to his basement wall and do experiments on her. Kresley Cole manages to seamlessly intertwine that present day view with the past. The whole time you are wondering what the hell could happen to Evie to have her end up at this house alone? What happened to Jackson? Well, that bid of foreshadowing should have let me in on something, but I shamelessly hoped for the best.
For the most part, I was hooked on finding out what the hell was going to happen with this story. Like most well written, post apocalyptic novel, I was fascinated with the world and how it had changed as well as how the characters adapt to it. Not only that, but the way the tarot cards are so important and Evie’s abilities are intriguing. This novel manages to be both dystopian and paranormal and it is a wonderful mashup. But about half-way into the novel, a fake love triangle was introduced. I say fake because really, Jackson wants Evie and Evie wants Jackson, but Selena wants Jackson and when Jackson is mad at Evie, he has no problem using Selena to make Evie jealousy. That grated on my nerves a lot. I hate love triangles as much as I hate guys who use other girls to make someone jealousy. Even still, I was rooting for Evie and Jackson to set the bullshit aside and just be together.
Then there was the ending. I saw a small bit of it coming ****SPOILER****I so knew Arthur was one of the Arcana****END SPOILER****, I didn’t see all of it and what I wasn’t expecting shocked me. And then it angered me. No, it fucking pissed me off. If you don’t like bad cliffhanger endings, stay far fucking away from this damned thing until the rest of the series is released because you will not be amused. ****SPOILER****Evie finally decides to tell Jackson all her secrets after they have this big fight but then she sees him making out with Selena, so she just up and leaves. Which is when she comes across Arthur. Now, since she doesn’t have Jackson to keep her sane, she decides to give into her evil destiny to become a murderous witch who has to defeat Death (who is an actual person, not just a mythical figure). Then, of course, after she goes all out psycho, Jackson comes to rescue her and sees her in her Arcana glory and freaks out just like she thought he would. He looks at her like she’s the devil and crosses himself and all hope of them being together anytime soon evaporates instantly.****END SPOILER****