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Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Review

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

What happens when you can no longer believe what you see or even how you feel? When your world spins out of control, whom do you trust?

Seventeen-year-old Violet White lives with her antagonistic twin brother, Luke, in an old mansion on the cliffs of a small, seaside village. Both the location of their house and their status as members of a prestigious family with old money leave Violet and Luke on the outskirts of town, but their family fortune is now virtually nonexistent, and their artistic parents are too busy painting their way across Europe. Violet spends most of her days in a lazy pattern of reading, reminiscing on her dead grandmother’s teachings about the Devil and being teased by Luke and their neighbor, Sunshine. Excitement finally comes into Violet’s life in the form of River West, the unusual boy who shows up to rent her guesthouse.

"By combining a riveting supernatural mystery with the sweet confusion of first love, Tucholke creates a novel that is seductive, unsettling and eerily beautiful."

River is mysterious, charismatic and flashes a crooked smile that would make any girl starry-eyed. Despite his obscure background and an undeniable penchant for telling lies, River stirs within Violet feelings she has never had for any boy before. But along with River’s arrival comes the beginning of a series of strange and frightening events: children seeing the Devil, haunting appearances from ghosts and graphic murders and suicides. Violet begins to worry that River is somehow the cause of all her town’s new problems. Could he be manipulating these people into committing such evil acts? If so, does that mean he is also manipulating Violet into falling in love with him?

Violet’s persistent quest for answers unearths new family secrets and changes the way she thinks about herself, as well as the people she loves. River’s dark nature is tantalizing and challenging to Violet’s innocent and straightforward outlook on life, forcing her to make the decision of which to trust more --- her head or her heart. In order to protect those around her, Violet finds within herself a courage she never knew she possessed and prepares for an event she never thought possible --- coming face-to-face with the Devil.

BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA, the first novel from Tucholke, is darkly compelling. Readers will fall under River’s spell and experience the whirlwind of emotions expressed in Violet’s honest narrative. By combining a riveting supernatural mystery with the sweet confusion of first love, Tucholke creates a novel that is seductive, unsettling and eerily beautiful.

Reviewed by Sabrina Abballe on July 22, 2013

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
by April Genevieve Tucholke

  • Publication Date: August 15, 2013
  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Dial
  • ISBN-10: 0803738897
  • ISBN-13: 9780803738898