ISBN: 978-1-61620-521-0




PAGES: 288

TRIM SIZE: 5.5 X 8.25

ISBN: 978-1-61620-521-8

LIST PRICE: $17.95


On sale date: 05-30-2017


PAGES: 288

TRIM SIZE: 5.5 X 8.25

ISBN: 978-1-61620-698-7



E-book available for $1.99 from 5/16-5/23!

In this stunning debut, legends collide with reality when a boy is swept into the magical, dangerous world of a girl filled with poison.

Everyone knows the legends about the cursed girl–Isabel, the one the senoras 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.

A Fierce and Subtle Poison beautifully blends magical realism with a page-turning mystery and a dark,  starcrossed romance–all delivered in lush, urgent prose.

A Spring 2016 Kids’ Indie Next List Pick


Meet the Author

Photo Credit: Laura Burlton Photography


Samantha Mabry grew up in Texas playing bass guitar along to vinyl records, writing fan letters to rock stars, and reading big, big books, and credits her tendency toward magical thinking to her Grandmother Garcia, who would wash money in the kitchen sink to rinse off any bad spirits. She teaches writing and Latino literature at a community college in Dallas, Texas, where she lives with her husband, a historian, and her pets, including a cat named Mouse. A Fierce and Subtle Poison is her first novel.


"Samantha Mabry’s magical debut is both a chilling mystery and a heartbreaking meditation on love, longing and sacrifice . . . A Fierce and Subtle Poison will get into your blood."
- Laura Ruby, author of Bone Gap

"A breathtaking story in which myths come to frightening life and buried wishes might actually come true."
- Nova Ren Suma, author of The Walls Around Us and Imaginary Girls

"This is a coming-of-age story set against the mystic and the tragic, and it will likely leave a mark on readers for days."
- Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred review