In this seductive follow-up to Poison Princess, #1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole takes us deeper into the dark world of the Arcana Chronicles.
Evie has fully come into her powers as the Tarot Empress, and Jack was there to see it all. She now knows that the teens who’ve been reincarnated as the Tarot are in the throes of an epic battle. It’s kill or be killed, and the future of mankind hangs in the balance.
With threats lurking around every corner, Evie is forced to trust her newfound alliance. Together they must fight not only other Arcana, but also Bagmen zombies, post-apocalyptic storms, and cannibals.
When Evie meets Death, things get even more complicated. Though falling for Jack, she’s drawn to the dangerous Endless Knight as well. Somehow the Empress and Death share a history, one that Evie can’t remember—but Death can’t forget.
(Description from Goodreads)
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the most swoon worthy YA book of 2013! No really, I was swooning the entire time. The description isn’t lying when it says the “seductive follow-up” to Poison Princess. It was seductive on so many levels that it practically made my head spin, especially since it is a YA novel. Like it says, this is the second book in the Arcana Chronicles. The first, Poison Princess, came out last year. I reviewed it and it can be found HERE.
I will start off by saying that this book will either leave you Team Jack or Team Death. No lie, and as much as I hate the whole team thing, I found myself being Team Death. But that’s just a personal preference. Of course, I’ve seen so many people complain about the whole love triangle bit with Evie, but that’s just something YA includes from time to time. If it’s done well, it can be incredibly entertaining. Endless Knight managed to have a good love triangle. Between the ragin’ Cajun and the sinister Death, Evie is being pulled in all sorts of directions. I won’t harp on the romance, since that might contain spoilers, but just know that between the two…Death had me swooning the entire time. Siiiiigh…
This book has a little bit of everything from romance to action to even mystery. Heck, we even are faced with some betrayal this time around. The fights in this book are thrilling and even graphic (there was one scene where I actually felt sick to my stomach – kudos to the author on managing to pull that off!) and will leave you on the edge of your seat. Since this story picks up exactly where Poison Princess left off, readers aren’t (luckily) left wondering what happened in that time span between the two. Everything about this book had been taken up a notch, especially the drama.
My favorite part of any book are the characters and Endless Knight didn’t let me down in that department. I loved all of the characters, except The Hierophant, but that’s just because he was gross. Aside from truly getting to finally see and understand Death, I really loved the character of Lark. I won’t say who or what she is, but I thought her personality was fantastic and I enjoyed the connection she made with Evie. But Death…oh, Death. I could write all day about him, but I’ll spare you my loving thoughts for him. However, I will say that I have to wonder if I do love him or if I feel bad for him…maybe even both?
We also get a closer look at the bagmen and the cannibals in this book. I will say that if it weren’t for everything else in the book being so awesome, I may have dropped my rating at least half a star because of how gross the cannibals and their section were. Like I mentioned earlier, the cannibals actually made me feel sick to my stomach, it was that graphic of a part. I’m glad it didn’t last very long. The bagmen are also insanely creepy, so mix them with the gross cannibals and you have a recipe for turned stomachs.
I’m still fascinated with the concept of these characters being real life versions of the Major Arcana Tarot cards. I typically wouldn’t be interested in something like this, but this series has me curious as to what each card stands for. It’s always refreshing to come across something completely different and new from other stories, and the use of Tarot cards come to life has done just that. I’m anxious to see who the other cards are and how their characters encompass the personality and abilities of the card.
There were many shocking moments, like how Jackson treated Evie after he discovered what she could do, but I feel like that’s what kept the story going (along with it just being fantastic). I will admit that the beginning, for me, was a little difficult to get in to. It wasn’t until I was about a fourth of the way through the book before I truly got into what was happening. I’m not sure why it took me so long to really dive into the story, but it wasn’t because it was bad; I just couldn’t focus on what was happening at that time in the story. There are many realizations and quite a few secrets come to light, but that just adds fuel to the fire for this storyline.
I also must say that despite my 5 out of 5 star rating, I hated the ending. Why? Because it was such a major cliffhanger! I have never encountered a cliffhanger quite like the one at the end of Endless Knight. And to find out that the next book doesn’t come out until sometime next year (probably around the same time)? It’s going to be brutal to have to wait that long. But hey, I suppose that just shows how great this book was.
I seriously hope this review makes sense, because I don’t feel like my words do this book justice. My thoughts are still all over the place because of it.