Endless Knight (The Arcana Chronicles #2)
Simon & Schuster
Read from my local library
Evie has now fully come into her powers as the Empress. She understands what she’s capable of and she understands the game that is being played. Everyone who has been reincarnated as one of the Tarot cards are in a battle to the death with the winner being granted immortality. She’s taken out one of the players already, although only because he threatened her. However there’s no denying that when her Empress persona takes over, Evie finds it almost impossible to stay in control. The Empress wants to inflict pain and suffering and it’s very difficult to pull herself away from that.
Evie decides it might be time to approach the games a bit differently and call a truce. After all, they’re bigger than the game, they can decide not to kill each other. She’s already in an alliance with the Fool, who guides her way, the Moon and the Magician and she’s sure there are other players out there that she can convince they can work together.
With the possible exception of Death.
Death has been speaking to Evie for a while now. And when he kidnaps her and takes her back to his stronghold, Evie knows that if she wants to escape, she’s going to have to employ some unusual methods. Death and Evie have a past that she can’t remember and he can’t forget. She’s also the only person Death can touch, skin on skin contact without killing them. And Death wants to touch her.
Although Evie has feelings for Jack, the Cajun boy from her hometown, there’s no denying that the more time she spends with Death, the more she is drawn to him. She begins to learn, remember, bits and pieces of their history and what they have shared over the years. The love….and the betrayal.
I read the first book in this series, Poison Princess as part of the Simon Pulse 30 Days of Reading promotion in December but it was during the time I was taking a break from blogging so I never ended up writing a review for it. I didn’t realise that not long after I finished that, the third book was due out and promos began popping up on my instagram inviting followers to comment if they were #teamJack or #teamDeath. Given Death was a psychopath who killed her in her dreams and spoke to Evie in her mind about killing her and how good it would be, I was sort of surprised that so many were showing their love for him. I figured that book 2 would be “Death’s book” and I was willing to be converted.
Well, that didn’t happen. In actual fact, I find Death kind of boring. Blah blah he’s so old and tormented, being immortal and all. He never gets to touch people so he’s all alone with no friends. He’s like the original whiny emo with a side of sadistic murderer thrown in. He has an annoying habit of referring to Evie as “creature” when he speaks to her and I really don’t get why he didn’t just kill her to begin with. He talks of ‘this lifetime’ as the one time he decided not to show her any mercy but that’s pretty much what he does. He takes her to his home, gives her food and clothing, allows her free rein (mostly, although some areas are off limits and he has incapacitated her powers). Despite the fact that he’s thousands of years old, all Evie has to do is put on some workout clothes and dance and he’s panting around after her like a horny teenager. All the while he claims he cannot be seduced but it’s pretty clear, that yes he can and will. The thing is, as their history becomes more and more clear, I get the feeling I should’ve been swayed more towards him. He’s endured a lot at the hands of the Empress’s past incarnations but I really didn’t care. He spends so much time running away from Evie that the chemistry feels lackluster and disappointing.
Look, Jack is kind of a douche too. I get that. But he’s an 18yo boy from a terrible area who has had an awful home life and been treated like dirt probably his whole life. He’s insensitive at times and this book reveals that he kept some pretty big secrets from Evie. Which she gets all super angry about despite the fact that she was keeping things from him. Jack has his flaws for sure. But I find them interesting when they’re together, even when they’re fighting. The chemistry is there when they’re squaring off and it’s there during the more gentle moments too. I feel as though the Death thing was being forced – oh there is history and betrayal and she’s the only one that can tame the killing machine. I feel as though this book played all of Death’s cards whereas Jack still has a lot up his sleeve, such as precisely who is and what role he has to play in the Arcana. I’m pretty sure he’s not just an average boy and that he does have some sort of deeper involvement.
It’s kind of weird when you don’t ‘get’ a coupling. I wonder if there’s something wrong with me or if I just tend to really go for the first guy that comes into the picture? I don’t know. I mean I’m Team Ranger in the Stephanie Plum books so I guess that isn’t true. But I really don’t get all of the love for Death. He has about as much personality as the average household pot plant for me. Gosh knows Evie isn’t perfect either, she’s spoiled and silly and jumps to conclusions and all the rest. She’s done a bit of growing and she clearly has a lot more to do. But I just don’t really see a future for them. Kind of hard to be happily ever after with a guy who kills everyone he touches and wants to kill all your friends.
The third book has been released now and I find myself torn about reading it. I actually tried to find a few spoilers around to see if it was going to end the way I wanted it to or if I was going to go through the whole thing only to get to the end and go argh! But there’s not really much around. Guess I’m just going to have to bit the bullet and see what happens.
Book #10 of 2015