Book Review : Nightshade by Maryrose Wood



Product Details
  • Reading level: Ages 13 and up
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Balzer + Bray (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061802425
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061802423
  • Amazon / Barnes & Noble / The Book Depository


Sixteen-year-old Jessamine Luxton is heartbroken. Her true love, Weed, the strange and intriguing young man who came into her life so suddenly, has disappeared.

Jessamine suspects that her own father, Thomas, may have been involved. Thomas was obsessed with poisons and discovering Weed's secret understanding of dangerous plants. This suspicion and her own growing expertise with poisons have changed her. She is no longer innocent. So when Jessamine learns that Weed is alive and in danger, she will do whatever it takes to be reunited with him, including killing whoever gets in her way.


Nightshade picks up where Poison Diaries end. Now awaken, Jessamine is heartbroken to find out that Weed has left, his whereabouts unknown. Her father tells her about how Weed, feeling helpless, left her to die because he knew that he could not save her. However, Jessamine doubts her father’s words, for when she was in a delirium, the Prince of Poison, Oleander had shown her everything.

When she finds out the truth behind her mother’s death, she wants to get revenge… and no other way is better than using what she knows best: poison. After she gets a taste of revenge, she flees from the place she once called home in a quest to search for Weed. On the journey, Oleander seduces her to do bad things and causes her to degrade both mentally and morally. She changes into a whole new person: a beautiful, seductive and heartless woman called Belladonna. (Sounds familiar? Yes, that is the name of the deadly plant which her father planted in the Poison Garden.)

Weed, on the other hand, embarks on a journey to search for his beloved Jessamine, and eventually reaches Italy. He learns about a plot to overthrow the King and set the world in chaos, and he knows that the perfect medium for killing the King is poison. He is determined to stop this from happening.

In this installment, the story turns toward the dark side. It is fast-paced, gripping and infused with elements of fantasy, but there is some confusion between the narratives as the point of view shifts from Jessamine to Weed and then back again. Nightshade ends drastically, leaving readers anticipating the final book in the Poison Diaries trilogy.

Rating: 3

Note: I received this book as part of the Nightshade Online Book Tour program hosted by KDotOnline. Thanks to Leanne for sending me a paperback copy of this book for review.

About The Author

Maryrose Wood

Maryrose Wood began writing fiction after many years performing, directing, and writing for the theater. Her novels for teen readers include The Poison Diaries, Why I Let My Hair Grow Out, and My Life: The Musical. She is also the author of a series for younger readers, The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place. You can follow her on Twitter at @Maryrose_Wood.

Nightshade is available on Amazon / Barnes & Noble / The Book Depository

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