Review: This Poison Heart (This Poison Heart #1)

Title: This Poison Heart (This Poison Heart #1)
Author: Kalynn Bayron
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT, Fantasy
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Source: Purchased
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: June 29, 2021
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

Darkness blooms in bestselling author Kalynn Bayron’s new contemporary fantasy about a girl with a unique and deadly power.

Briseis has a gift: she can grow plants from tiny seeds to rich blooms with a single touch.

When Briseis’s aunt dies and wills her a dilapidated estate in rural New York, Bri and her parents decide to leave Brooklyn behind for the summer. Hopefully there, surrounded by plants and flowers, Bri will finally learn to control her gift. But their new home is sinister in ways they could never have imagined–it comes with a specific set of instructions, an old-school apothecary, and a walled garden filled with the deadliest botanicals in the world that can only be entered by those who share Bri’s unique family lineage.

When strangers begin to arrive on their doorstep, asking for tinctures and elixirs, Bri learns she has a surprising talent for creating them. One of the visitors is Marie, a mysterious young woman who Bri befriends, only to find that Marie is keeping dark secrets about the history of the estate and its surrounding community. There is more to Bri’s sudden inheritance than she could have imagined, and she is determined to uncover it . . . until a nefarious group comes after her in search of a rare and dangerous immortality elixir. Up against a centuries-old curse and the deadliest plant on earth, Bri must harness her gift to protect herself and her family.

From the bestselling author of Cinderella Is Dead comes another inspiring and deeply compelling story about a young woman with the power to conquer the dark forces descending around her.


Briseis has the gift of growing plants, but she has to hide it most of the time. When her biological aunt, Circe, dies, Bri inherits a rundown estate in upstate New York. Bri and her moms go to the new home for the summer, where Bri will finally be able to use her gift freely. Strangers start showing up at the house, wanting to buy plants and elixirs from the apothecary that her aunt used to run. Bri is left with cryptic letters that lead her to a Poison Garden behind the house. As Bri explores her new home, she discovers secrets in her family tree. Bri must learn all of the secrets to save her current family.

This story was filled with Greek mythology, which I didn’t expect. I love Greek mythology, but I wasn’t familiar with some of the figures and stories in this book. I don’t want to give anything away, so I won’t say how this mythology was used, but it was very cleverly woven through the plot.

I was suspicious of most of the characters that Bri met at her new home. There were a lot of things that didn’t make sense at the beginning, but they were explained by the end. The story ended on a great cliffhanger, so I can’t wait to read the next book!

This Poison Heart is a great fantasy!

What to read next:

Cinderella is Dead by Kalynn Bayron

Blood Like Magic by Liselle Sambury

Have you read This Poison Heart? What did you think of it?


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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