Margin Notes: A Fierce and Subtle Poison

A Fierce and Subtle Poison 

by Samantha Mabry

Everyone knows the legends about the cursed girl--Isabel, the one the señoras whisper about. They say she has green skin and grass for hair, and she feeds on the poisonous plants that fill her family’s Caribbean island garden. Some say she can grant wishes; some say her touch can kill.

Seventeen-year-old Lucas lives on the mainland most of the year but spends summers with his hotel-developer father in Puerto Rico. He’s grown up hearing stories about the cursed girl, and he wants to believe in Isabel and her magic. When letters from Isabel begin mysteriously appearing in his room the same day his new girlfriend disappears, Lucas turns to Isabel for answers--and finds himself lured into her strange and enchanted world. But time is running out for the girl filled with poison, and the more entangled Lucas becomes with Isabel, the less certain he is of escaping with his own life.

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

While the plot of this book raced along and was fun and imaginative, I found the characters one note and a little stereotypical. (view spoiler)

I wanted more of a character arc--someone changes their opinion in the end, someone has personal growth, your view of a person shifts because of the events... But that didn't really happen which left me feeling like the story just wasn't where I wanted it to be, or where it could have gone. Enjoyable, for sure, but it could have had more depth with a little character building.

The sense of place and settings were great, though. From the fancy hotel, to the jungle, to the carnival, to the empty beach, great settings and descriptions of place. 
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