Author – Luke Gracias
Publisher – Australian eBook Publisher
ISBN – 978-1-925427-34-9
Format – Kindle Edition
Story in a nutshell – A good paced fantasy/horror novel, it is essentially a story woven through flashbacks. What starts off with the public suicide of the one of the main protagonists, soon turns into a crisp thrilling story that breathes through the flashback narrations.
Denise dies leaving behind a diary for her beloved daughter Siobhan. The latter gets to know about her death and the legacy she has left behind for her to find. In a quest to do so and find a closure, Siobhan starts on a trip that would have her running for her life and at the same time finally knowing what her mother’s life was like. The horrific revelations leave her dumbfounded. She ultimately finds herself forced to make a choice, for the sake of the ones she loves and for the world’s existence itself.
Blurb – A nun commits suicide in front of thousands in Spain. In Australia, Siobhan Russo recognizes that nun as her mother, Denise Russo, who disappeared six years ago.
In search of answers, Siobhan travels to the isolated convent where her mother once lived. Here she discovers Denise’s final confession, a book that details a heinous betrayal that left her crippled and mute, and Denise’s subsequent deal with the Devil to take revenge. In the desperate bargain Denise made with the Prince of Darkness, she wagered Siobhan’s soul.
As Siobhan discovers the fate of her soul, she learns that hidden within the pages of her mother’s confession is part of The Devil’s Prayer, an ancient text with the power to unleash apocalyptic horrors.
And now her mother’s enemies know Siobhan has it.
Can Siobhan escape an order of extremist monks determined to get the Prayer back? Can she save the world from its own destruction?
Cover – A parade of mysterious hooded monks, wherein the leading man is holding a big cross – coupled with the name of the story, manages to pique your interest.
Title – “The Devil’s Prayer” – Given the fact that I have a zero knowledge about the Christian faith and history, the title managed to bring about the interest required to pick up the book and go on to read the blurb. For someone who has to get attracted to the title and cover enough to actually pick it up and considering reading, this one does a good job.
Plot – The plot starts off with nun Denise, being chased by some hooded monks and her very public suicide. This starts off a series of events which starts with Father Jakub visiting her family back in Australia and giving her elder daughter Siobhan her message and a key.
After giving it a lot of thought and getting a nod from both her Nanna and younger sister Jess, Siobhan travels to the convent where her mother lived. The moment she arrives, a mysterious red monk threatens her to leave immediately for her own safety.
Siobhan instead decides to move forward and know what exactly had happened which compelled Denise to abandon them suddenly. Once she reaches the convent, she manages to get to the “Vault of Confessions” and ultimately the diary left behind for her, which not only chronicles her mother’s life but also a part of “The Devil’s Prayer”.
In between escaping her mother’s enemies who now know the pages are with Siobhan, she starts unraveling every aspect of her mother’s life. The betrayal of her closest friends, that had left her crippled and mute; her subsequent deal with the Devil himself between saving Siobhan’s soul and getting her revenge – Siobhan finally gets all her answers and begins to understand her mother’s situations.
The ultimate secret is revealed and the onus finally lies with Siobhan if she would finish what her mother had started – to save the world from the Devil, or to choose a totally different path.
Characterisations – Though the character sketch of the main persons are very well etched, some of the supporting ones felt under described.
Favourite Quotes – A couple, which a thoroughly agree with.
1. the silver scars ripped open to reveal the raw grief underneath.
2. “Religion is the oldest business in the world. “We sell faith. Faith is being sure in what we cannot see and being certain in what we live for. The greatest fear of the human race is loneliness. Religion offers you God as your companion, to be with you all the time, wherever you go.”
3. For the existence of God and the Devil are intertwined: one does not exist without the other.
What I loved –
A good thriller after a long time, the pace was fast and does justice to the concept and the genre. The author plays with his words which had at least me, able to imagine the scenes happening right before my eyes.
The element of surprise was the way story ended on a high note which would keep you guessing what would happen next.
What I did not –
I guess nothing much, except a couple of places when going through that fateful night in Denise’s life – things happened way faster than would have been good. The scenes were too confusing. That was the only point where I had somewhere lost the interest.
My Take – Overall, a very good book, I liked the story; recommend reading this one.
Cover – 3.5/5
Title – 4/5
Plot – 4/5
Blurb – 4/5
Overall Rating – 3.8/5
Buy it here –
Note – This book copy was sent by Writer’s Melon for an honest review.