I loved this book. It was angsty, showed many Arcana in full use of their powers, and explored their thorny alliances. It ended on another cliffhanger that had me tapping my nook for more pages.
I am thoroughly #TeamJack and (no spoilers, promise), what happened to him at the end of Dead of Winter gutted me. I read Arcana Rising dying for information about him.
I loved the scenes in the first third where Evie was full-on rage-mode using her powers. Anger fueled her, which we've seen in pieces and certain scenes (which are awesome!), but this was scene after scene as the Red Witch. I was right there with her.
We finally get to meet Evie's grandmother, her Tarasova. I'd anticipated her being loving but firm. She is way more intense in her role as Chronicler than I'd thought--all about the game.
I also enjoyed Evie's scenes with Sol and even with Zara (Fortune). I love the world-building and the sheer scrappiness of the characters.
The theme of fate versus free will continues in this book in the series. Again there are stories from past games that affect the relationships between the players and their ability to trust each other. Evie had dismissed them as "that was then, this is now" in previous books (somewhat), but this time those stories from past games had a strong sense of foreboding, which I liked. There was also a sweet thread of love between the players--beyond the Jack-Evie-Aric triangle. Post Apocalyptic badasses need love too. ;)
I can't wait for the next book. It comes out Spring 2017.
Day Zero is a companion book to Kresley Cole's Young Adult series, The Arcana Chronicles. As a huge fan of the series, I totally loved it. Day Zero refers to the day of The Flash, the apocalyptic event that starts the next "game" between the players/characters. Normally, I'm a fan of reading books out of order (yes, such a rebel!), but for this, it's chock full of spoilers from the first three books. While it did follow some story structure across the chapters--which were each full descriptions (er, mostly) of the 22 Tarot cards--I'm not sure it would mean much to someone who hasn't read at least the first book.
I thought Day Zero adds to the series, little details that we wouldn't get otherwise, that more fully round out the supporting characters. I loved learning more about Selena, Finn, and Joules, as well as other cards we haven't met yet. I also appreciate the diversity and global-span of the players backgrounds and identities.
As for the Evie-Jack-Aric love triangle, it lives on in this companion book. With separate chapters from Aric and Jack, we learn more about these guys and, importantly, why they're so crazy in love with Evie. Swoon. I'm firmly #TeamJack, but Aric's chapters are absolutely heart-breaking.
Cannot wait for the next book, Arcana Rising, to come out!!
My review and an extended sample of the audiobook are posted at Hotlistens.com.
I’ve really enjoyed this series since I started listening to Poison Princess two years ago (I was late to the party, but that ended up working in my favor). This has been an exciting dystopian following Evie and the other Arcana as they learn more about their powers and play the game until there is only one left (I feel like I should see Christopher Lambert or Adrian Paul saying “There can be only one.” many times in this series. LOL).
This story picks up pretty much where the previous book ends. Evie is going after Jack, she is going to save him from The Lovers before their torture drives him mad. She snuck away in the night from Aric (Death). When she gets back to the camp, she learns he has made quite the name for himself. Several of the Arcana are getting along quite well there, thanks to Matthew.
Here’s where the story goes all wrong and finally starts to read like the YA story that it is. Aric shows up and Evie can’t decide who she is in love with, Jack or Aric. Yep, the dreaded love triangle of YA has reared its ugly head. The majority of this story is the three of them on a mission to save The Archer from The Lovers. OMG, the angst. It is big in this one. Evie goes back and forth several times. Jack and Aric are at each other’s throats. It is everything I hate about YA. Yeah.
All of that being said, I still have enjoyed this series. We did learn more about other Arcana. There is still some good action. We even get to meet some new Arcana. It was just such a small amount and was overshadowed by the love triangle that it makes me very disappointed in this story. Oh, and to top all of that, it ends on a big ol’ cliffhanger (hence why I waited so long to listen to this book. I waited until we got close to the next book’s release. See why coming late to this party worked in my favor.). I do plan to listen to book four when it is released, however, if it doesn’t go back to more of the first two book storyline and less love triangle type angst, I’m done.
Emma Galvin continues to do a bang up job with the narration of this series. I love her voice of Matthew, who is hard to follow with his weird incoherent babble. I thought she did a great job voicing Jack with his Cajun accent. I loved her voice of Aric too. I think she is one of the main reasons I was able to finish this story. If I were just reading the book, I probably would’ve set it down and walked away.