The Poison Diaries: Book Review and Giveaway


Just so you know, I received a copy of Nightshade from the publisher.

Nightshade is the second book in the Poison Diaries trilogy by Maryrose Wood. And you also should know, I’m a HUGE fan of Maryrose Wood (and not just because I kinda want to steal her name). Her style is unique and evocative, whether she’s writing about poisonous plants or incorrigible kids. I am immersed in her worlds from the moment I open her books. I jumped on the opportunity to get my hands on Nightshade.

So, yes, I might be a tad biased. On to the review…

Nightshade begins with Jessamine Luxton, a healer, and her lover, Weed, separated from each other, and suffering both physically and emotionally. Our young innocent is desperate to find Weed, especially considering the distrust she has for her cruel father, an apothecary and keeper of poisons. And so she makes a terrible bargain with Oleander, the Prince of Poisons, and the price he exacts is monstrous. Nightshade is a gothic tale of poison, politics, and passion, asking that question that always makes for a killer story: How far would you go for love?

I think I liked the first book in the trilogy a bit better, perhaps because I was entranced by that first blush of a high concept–and the well-crafted rendering of the story. I’ve longed love gothic, I love gardening and plants, and I completely fell for these unusual characters. Nightshade, of course, is more of the same, but it moves slowly at first; I was aware of the “let’s catch everyone up” feel. Still, once the plot starts moving, it’s an intense and riveting ride. In fact, Jessamine’s dark transformation occurs so swiftly that I found myself wanting to see more of her struggle against the evil forces of Oleander. I have a feeling that our story won’t end until our heroine finds her hidden strengths—and help from her allies, Weed and his plants.

Wood is an excellent storyteller, and though Nightshade is a tale dark and grim, there is a glimmer of hope, and it’s that glimmer that will entice me to pick up the third book in the trilogy. Read the first book while you’re waiting to get Nightshade. (I’ll tell you how to win a copy in just a sec.) The Poison Diaries trilogy is not like anything you’ve read before. Check out the amazing website and you’ll get a peek at exactly what I mean.

To win a SIGNED copy of Nightshade, you must perform the following tasks (I know. It’s like one of those epic quests. But it’s SIGNED by Maryrose Wood, so yeah, just do it):

Go to Twitter, follow @Poison Diaries and tweet “I want to win Nightshade, saw it on @cathychall’s blog.”

Go to Facebook, like Poison Diaries, and post on the wall “I want to win Nightshade, saw it on Cathy C.’s Hall of Fame.”

And go to the website, find the plant Arum Maculatum, and share it on Twitter, adding my blog name and @poisondiaries.

Okay, I told you it was epic. But here’s the thing. There are quite a few blogs out there involved in this promotion. Each blog is sponsoring a giveaway. In order for the promo mistress to keep up with entries, she has to have the blog name. And of course, using social media to promote the book is genius.

Nightshade is genius, too. Now off you go to win a copy. You have seven days, starting now. (And P.S. you can enter through every blog you find!)

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