Thursday, January 14, 2016
Review: Demon Road by Derek Landy
Author: Derek Landy
Series: Demon Road, Book One
Publisher: HarperCollins Children's books
Publication Date: 27 August 2015
Buy: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia
The mind-blowing new supernatural thriller from bestselling author DEREK LANDY, creator of international sensation Skulduggery Pleasant.
Full of Landy’s trademark wit, action and razor-sharp dialogue, DEMON ROAD kicks off with a shocking opener and never lets up the pace in an epic road-trip across the supernatural landscape of America. Killer cars, vampires, undead serial killers: they’re all here. And the demons? Well, that’s where Amber comes in… Sixteen years old, smart and spirited, she’s just a normal American teenager until the lies are torn away and the demons reveal themselves.
Forced to go on the run, she hurtles from one threat to another, revealing a tapestry of terror woven into the very fabric of her life. Her only chance rests with her fellow travellers, who are not at all what they appear to be… (summary from Goodreads)
Demon Road is a riot of action, supernatural creatures and humour.
This is my first Derek Landy book, having never read his Skullduggery Pleasant series. I've heard amazing things so I was a little intrigued by this one - and then it was picked as a book club read and the decision was made! I quite enjoyed this book. Landy really knows what he's doing. Demon Road is go, go, go and chock-a-block full of so much! What's great is though there's a lot to take in and the narrative kind of detours here and there to even more stuff, Landy never loses his way. None of these detours felt like filler, like a plot device to simply try and up the excitement - though it does do that too. I will admit to sometimes being overeager and frustrated for a resolution, to knowing how it was all going to end, but in the best sort of way, where I still enjoyed the journey. And what a journey! It's been a while since I read this and yet there's still so much that stands out in my memory. I think it's the detail and gore. Landy's prose certainly plays on your imagination - if not outright smack you in the face! There were more than a few times that my lip curled and nose scrunched or I wanted to squeal "ick!" The level of violence shocked me at points, but it added to the impact of the story. There's not much I'd change about Demon Road.
Except maybe Glen. Oh my God, how I got frustrated with Glen. I'm not a fan. At all. Yeah, he provided a fair amount of the humour, but I'm willing to sacrifice the laughs if it means ceasing his incessant chatter. Who knew too much talking could actually exist in a book? Seriously, Glen is a huge downside to Demon Road for me. I truly couldn't stand him. Other than his freaking talking ALL THE TIME, I hated his attitude towards Amber and her 'hotter' demon form. Urgh. Amber herself is a difficult one for me. I can't quite make up my mind about her. I appreciated her nerdy self and her coming into her own kickass nature, but sometimes her naivete, whining and sheer thoughtless actions really got on my nerves. Added to the whole Glen thing, it was often just too much. There's the possibility I'm being too harsh about Amber. I mean, come on. Teenager dealing with demonic changes and the revelation she's been born and raised to be eaten? Obviously I need to cut her some slack, right? I'm definitely all for reading where Amber ends up next, so she wasn't all bad. I liked that Amber sometimes crosses the line. There's definitely morally interesting issues here! Though it could have something to do with Milo too. At 32 years of age, I appreciate the appeal of Milo without feeling weirdly guilty. Yay for a yummy grown male character! Give me more Milo! I can't wait to learn more about his past - and his people eating car, of course. I loved Amber's demonic parents and their friends too. Their condescension and affront at Amber's actions cracked me up. Then there's the Shining Demon. I'm sensing quite the rocky journey ahead and I look forward to it.
There's already a lot of comparison of Demon Road to the show Supernatural, and I agree. If you're a fan of that I think you'll really like this book. I think of it as Supernatural meets Gilmore Girls. Lord, that talking!!