Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

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Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

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Category: Teens
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Loralei Haylock
Reviewed by Loralei Haylock
Summary: Post-Apocalyptic adventures with plenty of danger, intrigue and a heavy sprinkling of romance. Great characters, good pace and a killer ending that will have you pre-ordering the second instalment. Highly recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: October 2012
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0857079183

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Evie has always been plagued by horrific hallucinations and nightmares. After a stint in a psych clinic, Evie's desperate to get back to life as normal. Unfortunately, returning to her hometown triggers the hallucinations again and Evie starts to realise she is never going to be able to pass for normal. Adding to her problems, a new boy at school is destroying Evie's idea of the perfect relationship with her ideal boyfriend. Jackson is crass and a well known player - so why does Evie find him so tempting?

Before these dramas can reach a head, an apocalyptic event destroys the world as Evie knew it, killing all her friends. But this new world is familiar to Evie - it's the world she saw in her hallucinations. Realising they were in fact visions, powers bestowed on Evie as part of some ancient prophecy, Evie starts on a dangerous journey to North Carolina to find her grandmother - the only person who might be able to help Evie understand her gift. And the only other survivor from her hometown, Jackson, is along for the ride.

The premise of Kresley Cole's novel - an ancient prophecy involving kids with powers linked to the Major Arcana of Tarot Cards - is an interesting one, and I confess I wasn't convinced it would work. But, being a sucker for anything Post-Apocalyptic, I decided to give this a go anyway.

Initially I thought it was a little slow getting started, with a few chapters dedicated to Evie before the world ended, but actually, the time to invest in a few of Evie's friends actually made the impending apocalypse all the more tense. The countdown in the chapter titles ramped up that tension too.

The narrative, prudently, skips over the bountiful first weeks of Evie's survival, when she and her mother are able to survive comfortably on well water and tinned food stocks, cutting to the point where things are starting to get desperate, prompting Evie's journey across the continent to find her gran.

As soon as she leaves with Jackson, the narrative is transformed into a tense, well-paced adventure, where mishaps and bad luck drive Evie and Jackson apart as much as it drives them together. Their relationship is well-drawn, with inexperienced Evie always second-guessing Jackson's motives, and troubled Jackson always giving her plenty of reasons to second guess. The 'will-they-won't-they' element pulls you along almost as relentlessly as the rest of the plot, without ever feeling contrived.

This was a fantastic read, and the killer ending will have you pre-ordering the second instalment. Highly recommended. We also have a review of Cole's Pleasure of a Dark Prince.

Check out Bookbag's Top Ten Dystopian Books For Children for some excellent examples of fiction where the future is a terrible place. Adults might appreciate Fish Seeking Bicycle by Kate Cooch.

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Buy Poison Princess by Kresley Cole at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Poison Princess by Kresley Cole at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Poison Princess by Kresley Cole at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Poison Princess by Kresley Cole at Amazon.com.


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