The Devil You Know by Mike Carey

Devil you know coverFelix Castor–known as Fix by the people who can stand him–has the unusual ability to exorcise ghosts. But ever since the disaster that left his friend Rafi possessed by the demon Asmodeus, he hasn’t been practicing. In fact, despite the urging of his friend and landlady Pen, Fix swears he has given up exorcising ghosts for good. Then, on one of his rare visits to his office, he gets a call with a job offer. On the heels of this offer is a warning from Asmodeus that taking this job will get him killed. This spikes Fix’s curiosity in spite of himself, and he meets with Peele, the h

ead of the archive that claims to need the exorcism. Fix’s limited contact with the ghost when he visits the archive makes him hedge his bets and take the job, which thrusts him back into the world of exorcising ghosts with much more enthusiasm then he is ready for.

I enjoyed this novel much more than I thought I would. Felix Castor was a great character, and I really liked solving the mystery of the archive ghost along with him. This novel actually read much more like a murder mystery novel to me, with just a few paranormal elements thrown in, which I thought was great. I read plenty of urban fantasy novels that are all about the paranormal and action packed scenes, with some plot/mystery thrown in almost as an afterthought. This book was very different, with the mystery being more important that the ghosts or other paranormal creatures. There almost wasn’t enough world building, or enough explanation about the ghosts, weres and zombies. But I didn’t mind, I just wanted to know who the archive ghost was and how she came to be.


Felix Castor, exorcist turned children’s magician turned unwilling exorcist was a great leading character. He made smart decisions, took actions when he needed to even if didn’t want to, and grew up and learned about himself as the novel went along. I liked him very much. This was definitely one of those stories where I wanted to live in the world and be friends with the main characters: Felix, his landlady and best friend Pen, and even some of the people Felix met at the archive, like Cheryl. Then there was the interesting addition of the succubus Juliet. She’s going to be back in the next books, and I really want to know what happens with her. I’m very excited to read the next Felix Castor novel. It’s nice to read a book series where I can go get the next book right away, and don’t have to wait for it to be published for a change.

Happy reading,

-Branwen

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