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Speak of the Devil - Review by Emma, Teen Blogger

The Word on the Street festival this year led to many great book finds for me, but among my favourites was Shawna Romkey’s Speak of the Devil. I was even fortunate enough to meet Shawna herself, which only added to my excitement about reading her book.

This young adult novel is set in modern day United States. The main character, Lily, is a high school junior in Missouri. One night she is in a car accident along with her best friends, Mike and Julie. Lily is the only one who survives, sort of. In fact, she dies in the accident but only briefly, to be pulled back from heaven at the last minute.

Lily can’t stay in Missouri after her friends’ deaths, so she moves to her dad’s house in Kansas City. At her new high school, Lily can’t help but notice the drama group with their ever-absent teacher, Ms. McNair. In fact, Lily can’t help but notice two people in particular, Luc and Mo. When Lily ends up accompanying the drama group to the Renaissance Festival, she realises there is more to them than meets the eye. Lily soon discovers that both the drama group and herself are tied up in a war between demons and angels, a war that will determine the fate of God Himself.

Lily wants to know why she was brought back from the dead, and is it connected to Luc, Mo, and the drama group? And what of the divine war that looms over them all?

Shawna Romkey constructs her plot perfectly and all the details are relevant and woven together. I also loved how vivid her descriptions were, and I was hooked three pages in. I felt that the car accident was especially well-described. It was exactly how I would imagine a car crash feeling. Lily’s emotions after the crash and after the loss of her friends were fantastically strong, and I found myself going through it with her.

I loved this book, and I loved its sequel, The Devil Made Me Do It. As of yet these are the only two out in the series, but I eagerly await anything more Shawna has to offer her teen readers. I would recommend this book to anyone who liked The Mortal Instruments, and even if you didn’t I still recommend taking out Speak of the Devil and The Devil Made Me Do It from the library. And if you haven’t tried The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare, I recommend you take out the first book, City of Bones, as well.


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