Book Review: A Poison Dark and Drowning – Jessica Cluess

I finally got around to reading the sequel after two years, and it’s as exciting as I first dove into this universe!

Name: A Poison Dark and Drowning
Author: Jessica Cluess
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: September 17, 2017


The magicians want her to lead. The sorcerers want her to lie. The demons want her blood. Henrietta wants to save the one she loves. But will his dark magic be her undoing?

Henrietta doesn’t need a prophecy to know that she’s in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries, the one who would defeat the bloodthirsty Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.

Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook’s system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own.

So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients’ past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast to seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave, reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

Book Cover Comments

Ok so we get even more of this dramatic liquidy/smokey substance on a flower and I love the consistency with the books, and how powerful this book’s cover is with the tiger lily being tainted. Is there a significance in the tiger lily, I now wonder this question after I finished the book.

The Actual Review

Literally holy shit because I thought I wouldn’t remember a thing after two years of not picking up this book and its respective universe, but no.

I remembered everything real quick and dove back into the universe before I know it.

We come back into the life of Henrietta, the thought-to-be chosen one who’s actually not the chosen one, even though she did a heroic act, a great one, at the end of book 1.

We continue to face the monsters that we’ve been introduced to in book 1, but this time with even greater foes than the previous one. Not to mention, enemies defeated in book 1 has come back as another form, and its breaking Henrietta’s heart even further.

It broke me too I was so sad-
ok no spoilerz

There were definitely a lot of ships sinking and sailing here; Henrietta who happens to be surrounded by hot men starts to grow doubts in her head about who her heart sways towards to, and I thought it was very important when Cluess added elements and words said by some characters that addressed stuff like Cinderella complex, and the old-times’ men vs women view, gender differences. It really helped with character and emotional development, and though I’m not a big fan of the final ship that sailed, I understood why.

Some parts of this book was honestly heartbreaking; many (MANY) revelations are revealed: more about Henrietta’s father and the mysteries surrounding some particular Ancients, as well as Blackwood’s father and the burden Blackwood himself carried ever since the Ancients came to their world. The prophecy also comes into question when a secret ally is introduced: perhaps this ally is the propheciced one with their abilities on the show and the bloodline coming in to play, but I personally feel like there’s more to be revealed and book 3, and the prophecy, chosen one, has yet to be completely solved.

The ending was extremely heartbreaking and I need the next book to know what happens to our characters, and what other twists and turns Jessica Cluess has in mind for the readers to explore.

A fantastic tale of women empowerment in the Victorian era, as well as all the twists and turns and heartbreaks and revelations woven into the story, A Poison Dark and Drowning leaves you dying in the toxic words of this wonderful book.

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Joanne Lumiere

Joanne is the narcissistic founder of her book blog, Joanne Lumiere. Born and raised in Hong Kong, this 18 year old brat is currently attending college in Los Angeles, and still doesn't know how to read books with sophistication, and yet she runs a blog.

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