Can one Reader save the world from war?
The protagonist, Callie, is a fairly ordinary teenage girl. She has a tendency to break technology just by being near it and doesn't always understand popular culture references (but in both these respects she sounds a lot like me, so I can't hold those less common traits against her). More typically, she has a complicated relationship with her father, tempestuous romantic relationships and a beautiful but intense friendship with Amber. I enjoyed seeing how each of these relationships developed as the novel went on, and the effect that the book of poetry had on those around Callie. My only (slight) criticism was that the romance came on a little too suddenly for me, and felt out of place at first, but by the end I was absolutely rooting for them to end up together, so it didn't bother me so much that it detracted from my overall enjoyment.
Cole's world-building and characterisation are excellent and her prose is beautiful. The opening: "I never realised war could be so quiet. The National Service letters had whispered through our doors that morning" is so gentle and at odds with the expected descriptions of war, that I felt uneasy (in a good way) from the start. The move between this gentle pace and faster, more thrilling parts keeps the reader on edge from the beginning.
I loved the concept that one reader and one book could save the world. The book was full of little twists and suspense that kept me guessing to the very end.
I'm gushing, I know. This book is everything I love about YA literature. I didn't want it to end and when it did, I was relieved to see that a further book is planned. Highly recommended for anyone who likes thrillers.
About the Author
Louise Cole is an avid reader and writer, enjoys gardening and walking her cocker spaniels around North Yorkshire. She is an award-winning journalist, former business magazine editor and director of a media agency. Her fiction includes short stories, young adult thrillers and other stuff she is working on (hopefully including the sequel to this book because I need it yesterday!)
The Devil's Poetry is available to buy now!
* I received an ebook copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. Opinions are my own genuine thoughts and not in any way influenced by this. My thanks to Louise Cole and Faye Rogers for the copy and inclusion in the book tour.*
You can follow the rest of the blog tour for this fantastic book here:
Wednesday 14th June
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