Sunday, 18 March 2012
The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Series: The Demon's Lexicon #1
Type: Young Adult Urban Fantasy
Magicians summon demons in exchange for their power. The demons promise anything and everything to mark you, and then you get possessed...and die. Nick has been on the run with his family for his entire life. Along with his brother Alan, he is helping his deranged mother hide from the terrifying magician she stole a powerful charm from. But when Alan is marked by a demon and two humans are drawn into their life, the tables turn and suddenly it is Nick and Alan who are hunting the magicians...
This is one of those books that has been sitting on my to-be-read shelf for ages waiting to be read, but being passed over for other books. When I started reading, I immediately realised that I was really going to enjoy this. You are whisked in to an action packed start as magicians attack the brothers and the story works from there. This cleverly plotted read feels like an adult urban fantasy just with young adult characters and I love it for bridging the gap between two of my favourite genres.
After the action at the beginning, the pace of the book slackens and I did see a bit of first-book-itis while the world was being developed. That said the world building is excellent with a fully fleshed out mythology and the pace picks up again quickly building to a shocking action packed finale. The vivid descriptions make the settings of the book come to life on the page and it's as easy to visualise the exotic Goblin Market as the simple ferry to the Isle of Wight.
I had a bit of a hard time sympathising with the lead character Nick. The book is told from his perspective and while I loved his acerbic wit and sarcasm, he did at times become a bit too dark and unfeeling. I really liked him despite his darkness, and he provides a great contrast to Alan. While Alan seems like a really nice guy he admits to lying freely which means that Nick's brutal honesty becomes even more apparent and appreciated.
The two "normal" characters Mae and Jamie grew on me as the book progressed. At first I didn't really like them as they seemed to want Jamie's mark removed with no care to the consequences, but as time went on their characters began to develop and they learned about the consequences alongside the facts of the magical world. They really grew as characters and I'm looking forward to seeing where they go next.
All in all this was an awesome read and I can't wait for The Demon's Covenant.