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Endless Knight (The Arcana Chronicles) Hardcover – October 1, 2013
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"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
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THE STORY: Evie has come into her powers as the Empress -- who controls plants and uses poison as one of her weapons. She and the other Arcana characters are engaged in a battle to the death for immortality. Evie is determined to thwart the game by forming alliances and then not killing her allies. But before she can do that she must destroy Death who is after her. When Evie and Death meet, Evie discovers that Death might be more complicated and attractive than she expected.
OPINION: This book is about the murky and often hidden motivations of characters. Things are not simple in this world and Evie is learning that things are not black and white for any of the characters. Friends betray and enemies have justifications. Evie herself realizes that her own history is far more complicated than she imagined.
This book also introduces the love triangle between Evie, Jack and Death. It is a testament to the book that it is difficult to choose between Jack and Death both for the reader and Evie. Death is a significant character in this book as some of his history and motivations are exposed.
I felt that the characters are developing well. I don't want to give away too much of the plot but things get more complicated and Evie has more allies, more enemies and more complications in her life.
There is significant action in this book and more Arcana characters meet their ends. I believe this book was more consistent in its flow, and the reason I gave it a 4 is because I really dislike love triangles. Your mileage may vary.
WORTH MENTIONING: This book ends on a cliffhanger.
CONNECTED BOOKS: ENDLESS KNIGHT is the second book in the Arcana Chronicles series. It should be read after the first book in order to understand whati s going on.
STAR RATING: I give this book 4 stars.
WARNING: DO NOT CONTINUE IF YOU HAVE NOT READ POISON PRINCESS.
Endless Knight picks up where Poison Princess left off when Evie had come into her full powers and had eviscerated the Alchemist right in front of Jack and their crew. Poor Jack is a little freaked out and spends a couple chapters trying to come to terms with his fear and anger at his girl being "not quite human" and her ability to transform into something frightening. Once Jack finally has his head on straight and he accepts that he's in love with Evie, what she is does not matter and he is back in the game. What an amazing character. He's a handful, yet he is incredibly sweet, caring, loving, and sexy as hell and I just about melted over his sweet words and total adoration of Evie. That boy has it bad. He still wants to protect her even though clearly she is able to protect herself. Death is still around to antagonize and exasperate Evie, voicing her inevitable demise in her head.
In this installment, we meet some new Arcana. The kids face several dangers. It's raining and the bagmen are getting stronger and the cannibals are a huge threat. The "cannibal chapter" is particularly disgusting, gruesome and utterly disturbing (you have been warned). Kresley could give Stephen King a run for his money in this chapter.
I love that we get to meet Death in this book. He's an interesting guy. He starts out as an absolute bastard, but I eventually warmed up to him. He's dark and twisted, but he's lonely. We finally learn about his history with the Empress and it was unexpected. This guy has serious emotional baggage. At first, I was caught between hating Death and feeling sorry for him. When his "bone to pick" with Evie was revealed, my heart broke a little for him. There definitely is a thin line between love and hate with these two. Even though Death is definitely growing on me, he's no Jack and I LOVE that sexy Cajun, even though Jack has some major secrets of his own.
And so, we get the dreaded YA Love Triangle. Ugh, I am not a fan of love triangles especially when there is the good with the bad in both men. If only they would end up in a threesome, but alas, this is YA so that's not happening. ;)
This is a fantastic, engaging and brilliant read that I would rate 5 stars. I am anxious for Book #3 because well, this one ended in a huge cliffhanger that left me mad as hell. Kresley has me hook, line and sinker with this series and I can't wait to find out what happens next.
I've been trying to think how to do a review of the book without giving everything away, and I just can't do it. So long summary short, it was great. Even when there was little to no action actually happening, it kept my interest fully. There is one thing that I think is stupid though...Evie's thinking on her "marriage" drives me insane because it makes no freakin' sense!
Right now, I do like Aric, but I still find that I want Evie to end up with Jack. Even though he has his secrets that he kept from her (and one is quite a big one) I believe he kept them for Evie's own sake. And I don't care what Aric says, Jack clearly loves her more than his own life. So she better fight for him and find a way out of what she ended up getting herself into at the end.