My edition: Kindle
Review: I received my copy of this off of NetGalley.
***Spoilers are in this review. Nothing major but still. Read at your own risk***
What would it take for you to make a deal with the devil?
Siobhan has just found out that her mother Denise Russo has died. Her mother had disappeared six years ago from Siobhan and her little sister’s, Jess, life. A priest has sought out Siobhan to give her her mother’s bible at her mother’s last request. In the bible there was a note for Siobhan to go to Zamora, Spain.
When Siobhan gets to Zamora, everyone she encounters tells her to leave Zamora. Once she gets to the convent Mother Superior Margret tells her to leave at once. A sister talks the Mother Superior to letting Siobhan stay the night but leave at first morning.
Siobhan finds her mother’s confessional book. She then flees to Madrid with the help of an officer.
Gracias wrote it the mother’s journal in first person and Siobhan in third person. This worked well for me because it showed when an entry was ended and Siobhan’s story continues. In the journal was Denise’s confession of making a deal with the devil for revenge against those who had betrayed her and left her as a cripple. Along with the journal there was a picture of her mother on her birthday with friends. There is something else in the picture. When Siobhan looks at it I got extremely creeped out. Congrats to Gracias, you had me on the edge of my seat ready to run to the nearest church.
I am not a very spiritual person. I don’t go to church but I do believe in God and in Lucifer, Satan, the devil, or whatever you want to call him. I also believe in demons, angels, and spirits. When I read a book like this I’m normally paranoid afterwards. (Reason why I put space in between books like this.) I started to get creeped out when Siobhan sees the photograph her mother left. As her mother says it was the only picture she has of him.
At first this was a slow start to the book. I was reading it just for reading it (after all I did request it and can’t let it just sit there) but once part 2 started rolling and Denise starts to see the devil, I didn’t want to put the book down. It was really hard to put it down, especially at work. I wanted, no, needed to find out what was happening.
I love the telling of how Denise is in denial then how her state progresses into hate and wanting revenge for those who have wronged her. It does get pretty gory. Siobhan’s side of the story also was kept on the edge. Throughout the book I wanted to know why the red monks were chasing her. Why was she in danger? Did her mom not hold up her end of the bargain?
The book was well written. I was on edge for most of the book. Definitely recommend if you like mystery along with religion tie ins. I would say this is more thriller than horror but none the less creepy. Fair warning there is a rape scene and torture scenes.
There is a part 3 but I would spoil the book if I talked about it.
There are certain details Gracias wrote about that I had to look up. Such as the Codex Gigas (Devil’s Bible). It is housed at the National Library in Stockholm. It is called the Devil’s Bible due to the legend on how it came to be. The legend says that it was written by one monk who was sentenced to death by being walled up alive (Not the best way to die). He wrote this book in one night with the help of the Devil. Grasias writes about this in the prologue. He stayed pretty true to the legend. Now I looked up how many pages it is said to be missing in the codex for real and it is said around 10 pages.
Those pages that are said to be missing, Gracias writes that they are hidden in a monastery in Zamora. These pages are known as the Devil’s Prayer.
Another deal I looked up was the Semana Santa. By the way the guys in the cloaks with hoods on, really creepy. Cool but very creepy at the same time. This is a real life celebration of the Holy Week.
If Gracias has other books out or will have more coming, I would definitely love to read them.