Title: Poison Princess (Book 1 in The Arcana Chronicles)
Author: Kresley Cole
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: October 2, 2012
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….
Thanks to Simon & Schuster PulseIt, I was able to read this book all in one day – in between family and turkey, of course. Honestly, even though I’ve read apocalypse/dystopian novels before, this is the first book I’ve read where the apocalypse and the direct aftermath was the focus of the book, or at least where I have been concious of that fact for the entire book. The Flash was never far from the plot or my mind while I was reading.
The characters in the book were wonderful – of course I love Evie, and am very frustrated with how the author leaves the first book in the middle of a character’s internal struggle, but I love Evie anyway. She is smart, she is loyal, and despite communication issues, after the Flash I loved the idea of her and Jackson together. Before the Flash, though, I was totally on Evie’s side – Jackson was a jerk. Despite the moments of heat when both of us were tempted to like him, I still didn’t think anything should happen as long as Evie was with Brandon. I might have wanted to nudge Evie to break up with Brandon so that Jackson was “legally” available, though!
Then there were the Arcana, with their … er … interests and powers, I suppose. Death is creepy; Evie’s revelation with the red witch and Matt’s involvement with it is weird; Selena is annoying, to say the least; and now Finn’s introduction has already made quite a stir. And then there’s the other one, who I won’t mention so as to not spoil anything, that is just plain psychotic in every sense of the word.
Despite the conflicts, through Evie’s voice and the interesting way that Cole told the story, the plot came alive in a way different from most of the other books that I’ve read. I loved the tension, the action, the insensity of emotion especially. And with the way that the book ended? Cryptic warnings, blurred intentions, striking events, and a flurry of emotions made for a captive audience, but with the ending halting the action, just when it was getting really good, I’m upset that this book only came out rather recently – that means I have a longer time to wait until the sequel!
I highly recommend this series for young adult readers. It was fast-paced, alluring, and let’s just admit that the cover is awesome! So pick it up, people!
**Note: this book contains sexual references and innuendos as well as direct mentions; there is inappropriate content. Recommended for ages 14 & up.