Before I begin my public declaration of love for this book, I have to share something special that happened to me:
On April 1, 2014, I was certain some friends hacked into my WordPress account to orchestrate an April Fool’s Day prank of epic proportions: the site had logged over 200 page views before Noon EST. This blog is 10 months old, is mostly read by my friends and family and does NOT clock anywhere near so many views a day. It wasn’t until later that afternoon that I learned author Kresley Cole shared the link to my Poison Princess review on her Twitter and Facebook accounts. I fangirled like a champ, for true. Not only did Kresley-Freaking-Cole READ my review, she liked it and shared it, bringing record breaking “eyeball numbers” my way. On Tuesday, 25,344 people saw the post (through sharing) on Facebook and 786 people visited my site through the social media links. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge this and thank her for it. I still can’t believe it, and the number of views continues to grow. Incredible!
In that post I mentioned that my review for Book 2 of the Arcana Chronicles, Endless Knight would be next. Here we go:
If you have not read Book 1, Poison Princess, no worries! There is time to remedy that: go grab the first 17 Chapters for free HERE and then treat yourself to the rest of the story. In the words of Captain Obvious: read Book 1 before you read this review of Book 2.
Endless Knight picks up right where Poison Princess leaves off (I love it when authors do that). No “…six months have passed since…” and they summarize the previous book for you before moving the story along. This book starts exactly where the other one ends, and it is a seamless transition that I, like many readers, appreciate in a series.
Evie & Company are forced to take stock of all that happened in the final chapters of Poison Princess, but they do not have much time to catch their breath. Guess what? Neither do you, Reader! Cover to cover, this book is crafted from fast-paced action, shocking events, momentious decisions and stunning revelations. The characters could not believe what was happening or imagine what’s next, and I could totally relate. The first book is intense, and this one is exponentially so… in a really awesome way. The characters really shine in this book, and not just Evie and Jack. The scenes that focus on Finn, Michael and Selena (yes, Selena) are entertaining and enlightening. The group grows closer as they fight together, find shelter and discuss strategy. Evie is their leader, but each one contributes. While keeping one eye out for trouble, they also look for additional allies to battle a common enemy. Along the way, they meet Lark, a young Arcana they quickly accept into their group. But should they?
The baddies from Book 1 are still around, and there are new opponents to battle as well. The battle scenes are phenomenally fierce and remarkably vivid – they truly come to life. You know how when you read a book and its like you are watching the movie in your mind? This whole book was like that for me. I borrowed Endless Knight from my local library, so I had an actual hardback copy with a bookmark and everything. There were so many “how is this happening in the first half of the book when surely this is the Grand Finale?!” events. A pattern quickly developed: I would finish a chapter, insert my bookmark, close the book, set it down in my lap, take a deep breath, pick up the book, read another chapter. Rinse. repeat. No joke. It was a “I can’t put this book down, but I need a minute” cycle that lasted as long as the book did. This was more than a story; it was an experience.
And I’m not just talking about the heart pounding battles, narrow escapes and frightening circumstances. The characters are also full of surprises, none more so than Public Enemy #1: the Arcana’s Death Card. I’m pretty sure only Kresley Freaking Cole could make me (and countless others) start crushing on Death. Where ol’ Jack comes on fast and furious, Death is a gradual incline that gets you to the same place. The jury is still out on who I’m rooting for… I do know I trust the author completely to deliver the goods (she certainly has so far). Is it 2015 yet? -kris