Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan at Bookslayer Reads which aims to showcase standalone books which you loved or would recommend.
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.
Magical realism has quickly become a favourite genre of mine so when I saw this book on NetGalley back before it was released, my eye caught by the bright and beautiful cover, and read the blurb I immediately requested it. Although A Fierce and Subtle Poison was a good story, with a rich setting, I can’t say it was my favourite magical realism book that I’ve read the date. I had trouble connecting with Lucas’s character and as the story was told in his POV that was a bit of a downside to this book. However I still really enjoyed the story, it’s just a shame A Fierce and Subtle Poison doesn’t have as much recognition as it deserves.
“I wish I could lift the curse over the house at the end of Calle Sol so the birds would fly over it again.”
The paper was dirty and smudged in places, as if passed through many sets of hands, and the crease in the centre was fragile, as if it had been un-folded, read and re-folded several times.
And, underneath my barely legible scrawl, in that perfect cursive: “So what’s stopping you?”
You can check out my review for A Fierce and Subtle Poison here.
What did you think of A Fierce and Subtle Poison? Have you read it yet or is it still on your to-read list? Let me know in the comments and let me know if you took part in this week’s Standalone Sunday as well.