Poison Tree

Poison Tree

4.8 8
by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes
     
 

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The rich stew of the author's creations—SingleEarth, vampires, shapeshifters, Tristes, the Bruja Guilds—are at full boil here in the story of two 20-ish young women trying to out run their very different pasts, and figure out where they fit in and who they might become. Each has landed in a more "normal" place, and each wonders if, like a tattoo that can't… See more details below

Overview

The rich stew of the author's creations—SingleEarth, vampires, shapeshifters, Tristes, the Bruja Guilds—are at full boil here in the story of two 20-ish young women trying to out run their very different pasts, and figure out where they fit in and who they might become. Each has landed in a more "normal" place, and each wonders if, like a tattoo that can't be covered up, they can ever really fit into "normal."

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—Alysia thought she was trading her adrenaline-fueled adventures at the Bruja guilds for a more peaceful life as a mediator for SingleEarth, an organization that helps supernatural beings. However, just hours after arriving at Haven #4, the human girl is caught in paranormal crossfire, pulling bolts from mangled flesh and allowing a vampire to feed off her so she can save his life. Fellow SingleEarth member Sarik, a shapeshifter who is running from her past, had a younger sister who was brutally killed and she brings bitterness and anger into her relationship with her friends-vampire Jason, witch-in-training Christian, and Alysia-all of whom were present at that death six years ago. Readers might wish for charts for the various characters, their relationships, and the numerous groups and alliances. There is no shortage of other paranormal beings in this novel, and while there are hints of romance, most of the story moves forward by conflict: Crimson versus Onyx versus Frost; SingleEarth versus Bruja; Sarik versus her past and her father, and the mysterious Kral. There are plot holes-for example, 1000-year-old Lynzi isn't familiar with weapons-and the complex story can be confusing. However, the target audience most likely won't question how young people come out ahead of powerful, experienced adults.—Maggie Knapp, Trinity Valley School, Fort Worth, TX
Publishers Weekly
Atwater-Rhodes (the Den of Shadows series) introduces a fascinating world in which magic and mercenaries are everywhere, largely unbeknownst to the general populace. At the center of the story are two young women with pasts they are trying to leave behind: Sarik, a shape-shifter (think were-tiger), and Alysia, a strong-willed human mercenary with a price on her head. Both have sought refuge in one of Atwater-Rhodes's most interesting creations: SingleEarth, an organization devoted to helping witches, shape-shifters, and vampires coexist with the "normal" human world in secret and in peace. In some ways, this book feels like the first section of a longer volume: exposition about this world's intricacies and players continues well into the final chapters, and characters spend more time learning about things that have already happened than living through the events in real time. However, the action scenes are brilliantly executed, with a speed and brutality that fits the high-powered players. Most importantly, the world Atwater-Rhodes has crafted and the people who live and die there are fascinating, believable, and ready for further adventures. Ages 12–up. (July)
Children's Literature - Kathie M. Josephs
Sarik and Alysia are the two main characters of this novel, which I found interesting since I am used to reading books with more strong characters than that. However, the author pulled it off beautifully. In my opinion, Alysia is the stronger of the two girls and doesn't shy away from much. There is a place called SingleEarth which is a safe haven for many different creatures...witches, vampires, and shapeshifters to name a few. There is no fighting, everyone gets along, you are at peace, and you can stay as long as you want. When Sarik was talking to Jeht, this is how she explained SingleEarth: "You are safe here. As I promised you before, you may remain here as long as you like. SingleEarth will provide teachers so you can learn local customs and the language. It is a good life." Unfortunately, someone or something is trying to corrupt the peace. I would put this book under the genre of Fantasy Suspense and the author writes in such a way as it is difficult to put down. I will say I had to reread several places because I got confused, but that didn't take anything from the story. I believe this book will be enjoyed by both boys and girls. Even though her audience is aimed at Young Adults, I think it should be for older young adults. I do highly recommend this book. Reviewer: Kathie M. Josephs
Kirkus Reviews
Here's a new paranormal world populated by all new characters for fans of Atwater-Rhodes. Alysia is human, but she has achieved level three in all three guilds in the warlike Bruja, an assemblage of paranormal organizations. She's also a tech expert, and she takes her talents to SingleEarth, an organization intended as a refuge from the paranormal wars. Meanwhile, Sarik, a tiger-woman who's trying to escape her tyrannical father, is in love with vampire Jason. These are only a few of the major characters in this entangled maze of people, paranormal creatures, relationships and organizations. Readers may need to chart it all to keep things straight. Atwater-Rhodes provides little direct exposition, leaving her readers to infer much of the structure of the story from conversations, a technique that helps immerse readers into the narrative but that may confuse those less attentive. She delivers her customary action-filled suspense, however, enriched with plenty of fighting and weaponry. The characters, whether witches, vampires, tigers or humans, can heal either themselves or others, facilitating many gruesome, normally fatal wounds that boost the action. Fans of the author's previous series will find much of the same entertainment here, with possibilities left open for plenty of sequels now that this book has outlined a new setting with fresh romances and rivalries. The tigers are a nice touch. Complicated, but suspenseful. (Paranormal suspense. 12 & up)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375985720
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
07/10/2012
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
306,712
Lexile:
940L (what's this?)
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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