Book Review: Poison Princess
I am always on the look out for new YA dystopian, fantasy, or post-apocalyptic series to read. So, when the opportunity to review Poison Princess, the first novel in Kresley Cole’s The Arcana Chronicles series, arose I jumped at it. I’m surprised that Poison Princess stayed off my radar for so long considering that it was originally published in 2012. Now, knowing that date, you might be wondering why I was recently given a copy to review. Well, the latest novel in The Arcana Chronicles, Arcana Rising hits shelves today.
You’ve probably guessed that I haven’t read Arcana Rising, but I did read the first two novels in The Arcana Chronicles in a span of two days. I’m currently in the middle of book 3, Dead of Winter. So, what did I think of Poison Princess?
The short answer: I liked it. The long answer: I feel a little conflicted about it. This review could go one of two ways. I can give a review based on entertainment value or I can go into an in depth psychological examination of the novel and it’s characters. If you know me at all, you’ll know that I’m obviously going to go with the former.
Poison Princess was not my favorite book. I think there are a lot of elements that I feel a little on the fence about. For instance, I’m not a huge fan of the protagonists overwhelming helplessness in the beginning of the novel. Nor am I crazy about the hyper possessive nature of her love interest. That being said, I was willing to look past those two grievances because I was absolutely sucked into the world that Cole created.
The concept of Poison Princess is really it’s strongest feature. The book is set in a post-apocalyptic world ruled by a game played by teens who are the human manifestation of the trump Tarot cards. The novel has a lot of elements at play throughout the novel. Between slavers, militia, zombie-like creatures, and cannibals, the protagonist, Evie, and her companion / love-interest / pseudo-antagonist, Jackson constantly deal with obstacles.
As the first in a series, Poison Princess gives a lot of set up information. At times the story feels a little overloaded and muddled, but for the most part it is fast-paced and a fun read. Adventures and sexual tension ensured that at the end of the day when I closed the book, I felt immediately compelled to start book 2. I call that a success.
Reason to Read:
It is exciting and a relatively quick read. The concept is really fascinating.
Reason to Skip:
This is definitely down to personal preference in subject and genre, but on a technical note, there are times that the story feels heavy and is a little muddled.
Is Poison Princess Worth Spending the Purchase?
I think so.
For More About Poison Princess & The Arcana Chronicles
Have you read Poison Princess? Thoughts?