Monday, December 7, 2015

Review: Hellraisers (The Devil's Engine #1) by Alexander Gordon Smith

Hellraisers (The Devil's Engine #1)Hellraisers (The Devil's Engine #1) by Alexander Gordon Smith
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Release Date: December 1st 2015
Purchase: Amazon
From the author of the Escape from Furnace series, an explosive new horror trilogy about an ordinary American kid caught up in an invisible war against the very worst enemy imaginable.

There is a machine from the darkest parts of history, concealed in an impossible location, that can make any wish come true, and the only price you have to pay is your soul. Known as the Devil’s Engine, this device powers a brutal war between good and evil that will decide the fate of every living thing on Earth. When a 16-year-old asthmatic kid named Marlow Green unwittingly rescues an ass-kicking secret soldier from a demonic attack in the middle of his Staten Island neighborhood, he finds himself following her into a centuries-old conflict between a group of mysterious protectors and the legions of the Devil himself. Faced with superpowers, monsters, machine guns, and a lot worse, Marlow knows it's going to be a breathless ride—and not just because he’s lost his inhaler along the way.
My Thoughts:
This book is a great example of why I still finish every book I start.  I've always had this problem and I've tried to stop, but then I pick up a book like this one and realize if I had stopped at 50 pages or so I would have seriously missed out.  Is this book but by the end it did grabbed me and the story line is pretty interesting so I'm glad I didn't put it down.

In the beginning, we the reader stay pretty much in the dark about what's going on in this world that Smith has created.  At first I was okay with this because the story starts off really action packed and had a lot of adrenaline coursing through the words.  At one point I felt like I was in some crazy Transformers from hell movie!  After awhile though I just wanted to know what was going on. Contracts, Engines, souls, demons it all just didn't make sense and after 100 pages something should make sense.  This was why I almost put the book down.  I didn't get enough in the beginning to pull me in even though there was so much action.

Pan is who kept me reading.  She is one bad a$$ character and I just wanted to see what she would do next.  I wish the book would have been told in just her POV.  The flipping back and forth got to be a tad confusing and I didn't like reading Marlow's thoughts as much.  His constant thoughts on his asthma got to be annoying and he wasn't a strong enough character for me.  He started out strong, but as the story went on we learn really quickly that he is just a coward and runs from everything.  He does try and make this up by the end, but even with that I still wasn't connected to him like I was Pan. She was interesting from the get go and like I said the reason why I kept reading. 

The story really took off after we learn about the Engine and the world that's been created.  This happens in the last third of the book and for some this will be too late.  I wish the author would have moved things around because the ending was so explosive and actually had me on the edge of my seat, but people won't get to this point if they aren't captivated from the get go.  I hope more people are like me and will refuse to put down a book because this world is unique and one that I think a lot of people will find interesting.

One thing though if you don't like gore turn away mow.  Things really got icky at the end and I even had to take a moment or two while I was reading.  It was gore galore and the visuals I got were just down right gross.  So be prepared if you decide to read this.  You can of course skip over the grossness, but A what's the fun in that and B you will miss some things so just read with one eye open.

All in all like I said I did enjoy this.  I liked the cast of characters (minus Marlow which is shame because he's a main character), I enjoyed the unique story line and am interested to see where it is going, and I liked the lack of romance.  Yes there is one brewing, but the world is the main focus which is just what I like in my reads these days. 

3.5 snowflakes


  1. I've been seeing this one everywhere the last few weeks. I admit that I'm curious about it now.

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