Goodreads rating: 3.6
Date published: Feb 7th, 2017 (USA)
My rating: ★★★★☆
Young Jude Brighton has been missing for three days, and while the search for him is in full swing in the small town of Deer Valley, Oregon, the locals are starting to lose hope. They’re well aware that the first forty-eight hours are critical and after that, the odds usually point to a worst-case scenario. And despite Stevie Clark’s youth, he knows that, too; he’s seen the cop shows. He knows what each ticking moment may mean for Jude, his cousin and best friend.
That, and there was that boy, Max Larsen…the one from years ago, found dead after also disappearing under mysterious circumstances. And then there were the animals: pets gone missing out of yards. For years, the residents of Deer Valley have murmured about these unsolved crimes…and that a killer may still be lurking around their quiet town. Now, fear is reborn—and for Stevie, who is determined to find out what really happened to Jude, the awful truth may be too horrifying to imagine.
Trigger warnings: bullying; domestic violence; murder; gory and disturbing descriptions
The Devil Crept In takes place in a creepy, small town called Deer Valley. We follow Stevie, a 10-year-old kid, during his search for Jude, his cousin, who suddenly went missing. Stevie has had a very hard life – some of his fingers are missing, he speaks in rhymes, his dad left and everyone thinks he’s crazy. Losing his cousin and best (and only) friend is something he really can’t handle, so he tries to figure out what happened to Jude.
“I wouldn’t go in those woods if I were you,” Stevie whispered to himself.
Although most of the book is told from Stevie’s perspective, there is another POV that might confuse you at first, but you will later realize what this POV means.
This book is so darn disturbing. Honestly. I never expected this story to go the way it went, I thought it would just be a regular thriller focused on an investigation run by a child. Boy, was I wrong!!
It seems quite slow and… normal at first. You feel as though nothing scary will even happen, and then it gets creepier and creepier and, suddenly, you will be terrified.
He didn’t like lying, but he was coming to realize that the older you got, the more you had to do it
For the most part, I couldn’t predict what would happen next, and that’s something I really like, because it keeps me on the edge of my seat. There are a few plot twists, the kind that make you fear. As for the ending, I was appalled. I never thought the book would end that way. It is not a happy ending, I will tell you that, but it’s brilliant, and it most definitely will give you chills.
I tryd to wait up but am real tired so I went to sleep.
Wake me up when u get home ok I need to ask u somthing.
Ur brother Stevie
P.S. Dont forget
I really loved Stevie as a narrator, and I grew very fond of him – which is a terrible idea in horror books because, what if a character you love dies!? Either way, Stevie is the purest of kids, and I love him. Can you believe how adorable his note is? (see above)
His heart was a butterfly trapped in a mason jar, beating fast enough to fill the sky with shooting stars. And the crash of the fender against an array of other detritus? Loud enough to wake the dead.
I really liked the author’s writing, it felt adequate to the people that were narrating or talking. Sometimes authors can use the wrong type of language for their characters, but Ahlborn nailed it. Some parts of the narrative were delightfully lyrical, which I appreciated (see quote above).
There is a very delicate and important issue that is portrayed in the book: domestic violence. At times, this was scarier than anything else in the book. The author can really create an atmosphere, to the point where you really feel like you’re in the victim’s shoes, feeling all the pain they describe.
In conclusion, I really enjoyed The Devil Crept In. It was the first actual horror book I read, and it made me want to get more into the genre. I will definitely pick up Ahlborn’s other books – the next one on my list is Brother.
If you’re into creepy and scary stuff, I would definitely give this one a try – maybe on Halloween, even!
Do you have any horror recommendations? Let me know in the comments down below, I’m on the hunt for more books like this ♡
I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Devil Crept In and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!
Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡