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The Poison Diaries by [Wood, Maryrose, The Duchess of Northumberland]
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The Poison Diaries Kindle Edition

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Length: 309 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Page Flip: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up–Readers will be intrigued by both the romance and complex moral questions in this fantasy set in late-18th-century England. Jessamine, 16, lives with her apothecary father, Thomas Luxton, in the remote countryside near Alnwick Castle. As she keeps house and tends to the gardens, there is one place she is forbidden to go: only her father enters the locked apothecary garden where he nurtures poisonous plants collected from all over the world. Their pastoral existence is interrupted by the unexpected arrival of Weed, a straggly teenage orphan who has an inexplicable knowledge of the medicinal uses of plants. As romance blossoms between Jessamine and Weed, she discovers that he is able to communicate with all growing things. Luxton begins to crave Weed's know-how and allows him into the apothecary garden, where the teen is made physically ill by the overwhelmingly evil personalities of the poisonous blooms. What begins that day propels the three characters into a tangled web of passion, betrayal, and the supernatural influence of the Prince of Poison. The novel explores the nature of good and evil and the consequences of choices whatever their intentions. As Luxton's explanation foreshadows, a plant that can kill used in one way can heal used in another. Told mostly in Jessamine's voice, the story has a compelling sense of urgency and mystery even as climactic events become too melodramatic. The book is based on a concept by the current Duchess of Northumberland who created the real Poison Garden at Alnwick Castle.–Cheri Dobbs, Detroit Country Day Middle School, Beverly Hills, MIα(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Jessamine is skilled at growing plants, but her apothecary father won't allow her into his locked garden of poisonous specimens for fear that she will come to harm. Then Weed, an orphan with a mysterious gift with plants, is left with the family, and things take a strange turn at the peaceful cottage. This intriguing fantasy has many tendrils to wrap around teen hearts: there is the budding romance between Jessamine and Weed, a grave illness that threatens Jessamine's life, Weed's supernatural skills, a series of chilling folklore-worthy tests of Weed's love, and encounters with Oleander, a figure who enters Jessamine's fevered dreams and implores her to abandon Weed and join him in death. The haunting ending will leave readers wanting to talk about the themes of cruelty, honesty, and loyalty. The setting is the area near Alnwick Castle in England, the real home of the Duchess of Northumberland, who has established her very own Poison Garden, and where (savvy fans may know) the scenes at Hogwarts were filmed in the Harry Potter movie series. Grades 8-11. --Cindy Dobrez

Product details

  • File Size: 2152 KB
  • Print Length: 309 pages
  • Publisher: Balzer + Bray; Reprint edition (July 14, 2010)
  • Publication Date: July 20, 2010
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003M69SC0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #694,964 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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