“You stop fearing the devil when you’re holding his hand…
Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White’s sleepy, seaside town… until River West comes along. River rents the guest house behind Violet’s crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard.
Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more?
Violet’s grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery… who makes you want to kiss back.
Violet’s already so knee-deep in love, she can’t see straight. And that’s just how River likes it.
Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying—a debut to watch.”
– Taken from Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12930909-between-the-devil-and-the-deep-blue-sea)
I’d like to thank NetGalley and Faber and Faber Ltd for providing me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
This was, for me, a very strange book. The writing style didn’t really click with me, even though I thought it was interesting at the beginning. That might have been because I was distracted by the fact that Freddie was, oddly enough, a woman. As I read on, the writing style became a little tiring, making me want to just be done with the book. Plot-wise, it was quite creepy, especially after River makes his first appearance. Toward the end, it became downright scary and the pace picked up considerably. Until that point, it was quite slow for me.
As for the characters, I couldn’t care about them. Violet had potential, but, after meeting River, she became a bit dull. That might have been because of the insta-love between her and River. I mean, she began the book as a 17-year old girl whose parents up and left to go to Europe and who has to make ends meet after the money runs out. After meeting River, she became meek as a lamb. All the questions she thought up weren’t ever actually made (there is a reason for that, but I wasn’t convinced). She only showed some real spark again at the end. River, the other half of this strange couple, didn’t earn my liking either. He was a compulsive liar, and I didn’t like his way of thinking. In my opinion, River should be locked up in some psychiatric facility.
As of now, I have no intention of reading the next book in the series. The way things ended was not enough to persuade me, nor were the characters or the writing style. I’m just letting this series go.
Rating: 2 out of 5