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A Fierce and Subtle Poison

A Fierce and Subtle Poison Book Cover A Fierce and Subtle Poison
Samantha Mabry
Young Adult Fiction
Algonquin Books
April 12, 2016

Spending the summer with his hotel-developer father in Puerto Rico, seventeen-year-old Lucas turns to a legendary cursed girl filled with poison when his girlfriend mysteriously disappears.



“A Fierce and Subtle Poison” is a wonderful tale of magical realism and fantasy based heavily upon the stories and superstitions found in Puerto Rico.

If you’re looking for a book with typical romance, this one is not for you.  The focus is more on the mysterious nature of a girl and a boy’s search to find himself.  I absolutely loved the look into how Puerto Ricans view the rich Americans who are taking over and destroying the natural beauty of their homeland.  For his part, Lucas, the main character, does have a love of the place and the people.  It’s nice to see hope for change.

The characters are very well-developed, and the book reads at a fast and easy pace.  It’s easy to get lost in the world and believe in magic again.  I can’t say much else without giving away some important things, but I can say the ending is satisfying and leaves room for a sequel without needing one to make the story feel complete.  It’s a really fun ride.

“A Fierce and Subtle Poison” does have some themes that might not be appropriate for younger middle graders, but anyone older who loves a good fairy tale will enjoy this book.  I highly recommend it.

This review is based upon a complimentary copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


Content Warning:

Language, Sexual Situations, Underage Alcohol Abuse, Violence, Brief Mentions Of Animal Death (Not Graphic)

Jodie’s Shabbat Surprise

Jodie's Shabbat Surprise Book Cover Jodie's Shabbat Surprise
Anna Levine
Juvenile Nonfiction
Kar-Ben Publishing

During their Shabbat walk in the park, Jodie and her dog Digger find the perfect birthday present for her archaeologist father.



I absolutely loved this book, which is much-needed, as resources for Jewish children can be difficult to find. The story is engaging and teaches about how wine was made and archaeology. There is also additional information about the true story upon which the book was based, allowing parents an additional talking point with their children. The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous and engaging for little eyes. There is just the right amount of detail, allowing plenty to look at without being too busy or distracting. A wonder book I highly recommend to those who practice Judaism or those who wish to teach their children about it and the Old Testament.

This review is based upon a copy acquired through the Goodreads First Reads program.


Content Warning:



This blog is just getting started, but please feel free to look around while I work on getting reviews uploaded.  I can also be found on Goodreads as adultintheyasection .