This review is based on a complimentary book I received from NetGalley. It is an honest and voluntary review. The complimentary receipt of it in no way affected my review or rating.The Devil Crept In by Ania Ahlborn
Release Date: February 7, 2017
Publisher: Gallery Books
Format: ARC, E-book
Purchase at: Amazon ◊ Barnes & Noble ◊ Book Depository ◊ Google Play ◊ Kobo
An unforgettable horror novel from bestselling sensation Ania Ahlborn—hailed as a writer of “some of the most promising horror I’ve encountered in years” (New York Times bestselling author Seanan McGuire)—in which a small-town boy investigates the mysterious disappearance of his cousin and uncovers a terrifying secret kept hidden for years.
Young Jude Brighton has been missing for three days, and while the search for him is in full swing in the small town of Deer Valley, Oregon, the locals are starting to lose hope. They’re well aware that the first forty-eight hours are critical and after that, the odds usually point to a worst-case scenario. And despite Stevie Clark’s youth, he knows that, too; he’s seen the cop shows. He knows what each ticking moment may mean for Jude, his cousin and best friend.
That, and there was that boy, Max Larsen...the one from years ago, found dead after also disappearing under mysterious circumstances. And then there were the animals: pets gone missing out of yards. For years, the residents of Deer Valley have murmured about these unsolved crimes…and that a killer may still be lurking around their quiet town. Now, fear is reborn—and for Stevie, who is determined to find out what really happened to Jude, the awful truth may be too horrifying to imagine.
The devil crept in is no joke. This is a horrific tale of two cousins and how their lives were affected by a creature from the pits of hell. I am not a horror genre aficionado but I do enjoy the occasional pulse pounding suspense that comes from reading a good horror book. This book delivered that as well as a side of gore.
The book is divided into three parts and I liked that a lot. At the end of a part you can take a minute to digest what you have already learned before moving on to another part of the story. The story itself is told from alternating points of view with the main POV being from Stevie. His character is ten years old and his cousin Jude is the best part of his world. What this kid deals with in his real life is pretty sad.
Jude is a hot mess. The kid has major anger issues and he is not all that kind to Stevie. Still, he treats Stevie better than everyone else. Learning about their adventures and plans together was endearing. I wanted them to have everything that they dreamed about. To see the transformation that took place in Jude was horrible. I kept hoping for a turnaround or that together Jude and Stevie would be able to overcome the situation but it was not in the cards.
The secret that is uncovered in this story is too freaking creepy and horrifying. The scenes where we learn about what the secret is, how it came to be, and the mother involved in keeping the secret were just macabre. Almost to the point of unimaginable but at the same time you really feel for the mother. She is so mentally unhealthy but she did what she did out of a twisted love and sense of duty.
What a story is all I can say! If you enjoy Stephen King’s style of writing (child-centered), then this story should resonate with you. I like the endings of a story to have some form of triumph but this ending was sad to say, realistic, and so, so sad for Stevie. I wanted so much more for this character. If you are looking for a twisted, revolting, and sinister read then I highly recommend this book to you.
*Thank you to NetGallery & Gallery Books for this eARC of The Devil Crept In*