Poison Princess (The Arcana Chronicles, book 1) by Kresley Cole
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.
The few adult authors that I love who venture into YA have really been hit or miss for me, mostly misses. However, within the first few pages I knew Cole was delivering! What I had no idea, after all I had been faithfully ignoring the book blurbs, reviews, and anything else that might spoil this read. Going in all I knew it was dystopian.
Peeling back the layers each page was so intense. First the book starts off in the future where the apocalypse (AKA Flash) has happened and Evie has wandered into a trap, where she might find herself tied up in a basement as a lab rat. Then the book jumps to the past 6 days BF (Before Flash) and Evie is just getting back home after spending some time in the loony bin. She just wants to be normal and avoid getting sent back to that medicated hell. What she finds is that her hallucinations are coming back, but maybe some of it isn't as crazy as she thought. Then boy from the wrong side of the bayou shows up at school and things get heated.
What I loved about this book the most wasn't the thrill of the past mixing with the future and present, but that Cole finally gets to show off a bit more of her stuff. Don't get me wrong I love her Immortal After Dark books. It's one of the highlight releases of each year for me! Sure she's mixed some of her favorite tropes into the book. Romance where the two keep getting hung up in what they think the other is thinking, check. Miscommunications, checked. Misunderstandings, check. However, this is a series where Evie remains the lead. That means the romance doesn't just get resolved right away.
Jackson, or Jack, is some yummy Cajun man candy. Something that I've always been drawn to. The fact that he's a bad boy with a motorcycle just added to the temptation! He's a hot head, and at times I was actually disgusted with him, but i think Cole has tempered me to that kind of male attitude. There's a love triangle here. Instead of being Evie and two other guys, it's Jack and two girls. Evie and one of her . . . apocalyptic rivals. Though I think Evie will be getting some options soon.
The desert apocalypse is . . . well never explained. This huge thing has happened before and what I think is reincarnations throughout time facing off for some type of end of the world battles. But why is it like this now? And what does it all mean!? Know idea. Evie is trying to find her crazy Aunt who actually knows, and that’s part of the adventure. The dystopian landscape is awesome and the beauty of Cole’s writing leaps out and memorizes readers. The cast of characters as they’re introduced amps up the universe and makes things feel more real. And of course more drama!
Cole brings parts of why I love her books to this new young adult dystopian. The fire of the romances that Cole always leaves her readers on fire with. Sure I’d like it if she changed up the formula, but hey I—and readers—always bite. The world is amazing and the mystery of what is truly going on makes my head spin with glee! A bunch of kids pitted against each other to determine the strange arcane power play that is going on as the world is left in ruin and humanity does what it does best. Turns everyone against each other. Unlike many adult authors who have tried to make the jump before Cole, she isn’t afraid to bring the controversy. Women haven’t made it through the Flash and now are treasures. Cannibalism, the fight for food and water, serial killers now able to live out their evil. Ah. Chaos. Mwah-ha-ha.
Sexual Content: Making out, talks of losing virginity, talk of sex, and sexual humor. This is a mature young adult.
5/5- Fabulous, a beautiful obsession!
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Poison Princess (1)