Saturday, 28 September 2013

Book Impressions - A Child for the Devil by Conrad Jones

In my younger days I enjoyed reading the Satanic cult books by Dennis Wheatley (The Devil Rides Out and so forth), by modern standards they're fairly tame, but the I enjoyed the concept of them and of supernatural evil in general. I still do enjoy reading such tales and A Child for the Devil covers similar ground, but in a modern setting.

The premise is a simple one, Satanic cults are thriving in the internet age and the writer discovers them while researching for his novels. He encounters them personally while assisting in a murder case and becomes a target.

While overall it is a good read, I did have a couple of issues with the book. The first is the lengths it goes to to try and establish itself as real events. While that is part of the style of the story I think it pushed a little too hard in this regard. I'm more than happy to provide a suspension of sibelief for a story, but in the case it struggled because it was making too big a point.

As a counterpoint to that for the most part the research did help ground the story into the world we are familiar with.

The other issue (or to be fair more of a quibble!) was the style of the writing, it's very matter of fact. In fairness that does help ground the story, but does make it a little dry to read. Finally the lead character isn't particuarly likeable, not a major problem as it helps him in the context of the story.

Those minor issues aside this is a fun read. The story works well and is paced nicely. I'm a fan of the subject matter, although it does skirt along the edge of the supernatural element. It will be interesting to see if that angle develops further. Overall I liked it and would recommend it for horror fans.


When Conrad Jones helps the police identify an occultist symbol carved into the chest of a murder victim, he attracts the attention of a Satanic cult who believe themselves to be human vampires. And they want desperately to silence him. Hunted by the cult and by the law, he has no choice but to become the hunter...


A Child for the Devil is available from Amazon (and is a good horror read)


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