Book Reviews, Five Stars

The Secret Library Book Review: Poison by Chris Wooding


“Poison has always been a willful, contrary girl, prone to being argumentative and stubborn. So when her sister is snatched by the mean-spirited faeries, she seeks out the Phaerie Lord to get her back.

But finding him isn’t easy, and the quest leads Poison into a murderous world of intrigue, danger, and deadly storytelling. With only her wits and her friends to aid her, Poison must survive the attentions of the Phaerie Lord, rescue her sister, and thwart a plot that’s beyond anything she (or the reader) can imagine. . . .”


forty years ofmagnificence (8)

Five out of five stars!


It has been a long time since I read this book – probably about 10 years – but I wanted to review it so badly, because it is one of my favourite YA fantasy books. Poison and me shared a love of books and a tendency to be stubborn, and her story was not only captivating but incredibly empowering.

Poison has never left the marshes she calls home, and yet she is not enamoured with her life, or her stepmother and baby half-sister, Azalea. Yet when Azalea is stolen by the faeries, and a changeling left in her place, she is determined to get her sister back.

Alone and in a dangerous world she has no notion of, Poison battles her way through sinister and manipulative obstacles to confront the Phaerie Lord, who is determined to see the human race eliminated. The antagonists are many and wickedly enticing in this book, and they will gladly inhabit your nightmares even after you’ve finished reading. The Spider Queen still visits me from time to time.

Chris Wooding is a master of plot twists. Several times during this book, you will find yourself flicking back a few pages to make sure you really read what you think you did. As the book has been published for over a decade now, there are spoilers everywhere on the internet but fear not – I will not spoil a thing for you here. The surprises are too amazing to reveal in passing, and to rob anyone of reading it for themselves is criminal. Just prepare to have your minds thoroughly blown!

Poison is a character destined for YA, because of her brash manner and defiance, and while she is a parent’s worst nightmare, she is a role-model in her own right. A teenager who drops everything to save her sister, and taking on every danger to do so, is one to be admired. Her journey is the key to discovering that your life is your own to write, and to follow another’s is to remain unfulfilled. To this day, I still admire Poison for all she achieved and what she helped me realise about taking my own path.

Wooding brings Poison’s fantastical world to life in the darkest light, and is the perfect escape for teenagers wrestling with parental issues – or adults wanting to relive their goth years. If you’re neither of these, but a fan of dark, gothic fantasy then this is a book you are still sure to enjoy.

Poison is available on Amazon in e-book, paperback or hardback format. At the time of this review, paperback copies can be found incredibly cheap!


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