Dead of Winter by Kresley Cole

Title: Dead of Winter
Author: Kresley Cole
Series: The Arcana Chronicles #3 
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Release Date: January 6, 2015

Summary from Goodreads:
Can Evie convince her rival loves to work together? Their survival depends on it in this third book of #1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole’s Arcana Chronicles, a nonstop action tale of rescue, redemption, and a revenge most wicked.

Heartbreaking decisions
Evie was almost seduced by the life of comfort that Death offered her—until Jack was threatened by two of the most horrific Arcana, The Lovers. She will do anything to save him, even escape Death’s uncanny prison, full of beautiful objects, material comforts…and stolen glances from a former love.

Uncertain victory
Despite leaving a part of her heart behind with Death, Evie sets out into a frozen and perilous post-apocalyptic wasteland to meet up with her allies and launch an attack on The Lovers and the vast army they command. Such formidable enemies require a battle plan, and the only way to kill them once and for all may mean Evie, Jack, and Death allying. Evie doesn’t know what will prove more impossible: surviving slavers, plague, Bagmen and other Arcana—or convincing Jack and Death to work together.

Two heroes returned
There’s a thin line between love and hate, and Evie just doesn’t know where she stands with either Jack or Death. Will this unlikely trio be able to defeat The Lovers without killing one another first?


I can't help but feel like this series is failing to live up to its potential. The premise is SO GOOD and there are glimpses of such greatness throughout the story, but overall, it continues to be overshadowed by the romance, and a love triangle at that, which both saddens and frustrates me. I can't say that I don't continue to be entertained, but I want more from this story than I am getting.

Among the Major Arcana left in the game, The Lovers are the ones to stir up trouble in this sequel. The are hell bent on revenge against Evie for deeds done by her past incarnations and are not above using those she cares about to lure her to them. But even as Evie journeys to face them, her mind is elsewhere. Her heart is torn between two men, and she can't decide who she'd rather be with.

I was never much a fan of Jack's. In the first two books he rubbed me the wrong way and although he didn't give me cause to dislike him in this book, I still don't favor him. I prefer Death, or Aric if you will. I know he's done horrible things, and I am probably being a hypocrite by choosing him, but it is what it is. In my eyes, he's the lesser of two evils. And SOO swoony. I will continue to root for him, even past the point of reason.

I enjoyed the action that we were given, although I would have preferred more of it. And I enjoyed the pissing contest between Aric and Jack as they traveled with Evie to The Lovers lair. It was quite comical. But I could have done without all the indecision on Evie's part. And I wish we learned more about the Aracana and the game. I still have soo many questions. Too many, I fear, for everything to be answered in the last book. But we shall see...

Despite my misgivings, I did read this one easily and intently. The premise is so enticing that it's hard not to get excited about it, and I would recommend this series for that reason alone. But I can't ignore the story's faults and that is why I can't rate it higher. I really hope Kresley Cole pulls out all the stops in the last book. I know she can do it because I've seen it. Fingers crossed... 

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