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Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea Hardcover – August 15, 2013


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Dial (August 15, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0803738897
  • ISBN-13: 978-0803738898
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (125 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #99,192 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 10 Up-With their beloved grandmother, Freddie, deceased and their artistic, absentee parents blowing the family money abroad, 17-year-old twins Violet and Luke are as neglected as Citizen Kane, their formerly grand and now dilapidated home on a seaside cliff. Antagonistic Luke and sultry neighbor Sunshine are Violet's only company until she rents the guesthouse to enigmatic River West. His crooked smile, discerning palate, and penchant for lying leave Violet both enamored and distrustful. He is cavalier with the mind-manipulating supernatural power he is unable, and somewhat reluctant, to control. In a small town with its fair share of lurid tales, River's appearance brings with it devil sightings, missing children, and disturbing deaths. Tucholke's gothic tone, plot, and setting, complete with a deteriorating estate full of dark family secrets, is reminiscent of Daphne du Maurier or YA fare such as Kami Garcia's and Margaret Stohl's Beautiful Creatures (Little, Brown, 2009). Violet's narration is frank and perceptive, livened with humor and an almost poetically descriptive lilt. She is a combination of naive and mature, having grown up in relative seclusion with limited supervision. Violet and River's attraction is palpable, but their romance is tainted by his shifty morals and shady charm. Swearing and sexual situations are non-gratuitous. Adults are easily appeased and generally turn a blind eye. Give this one to fans of creepy mysteries, particularly tales that don't skimp on the violence. They'll appreciate the conclusion's heart-pounding, bile-rising standoff.-Danielle Serra, Cliffside Park Public Library, NJα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Violet and her twin brother, Luke, live in a crumbling mansion by the sea. There’s not much of a town, and nothing much happens. Then River West rents their guest house, and all hell breaks loose. People die; children stalk the cemetery with stakes; and strange, alluring River delights and frightens Violet in equal measure. Violet’s beloved grandmother always told her to be wary of the devil, and it’s not a leap to wonder if he has strolled into her life under the guise of a copper-headed boy with a crooked smile. Tucholke paints this moody, gothic romance with a languid brush. Moments of horror nestle against warm, dreamy kisses. Though the text could have been tighter—and the number of important characters fewer—there are unexpected twists that make the story a surprise. That, and the faded elegance that permeates almost every page, elevates this above more generic offerings of its type. Violet, too, has a quirky uniqueness that will draw readers, just as it draws River—for better or worse. Grades 9-12. --Ilene Cooper

More About the Author

April Genevieve Tucholke is the author of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea and its sequel Between the Spark and the Burn. She has lived in many places, including Scotland, and currently resides in Oregon. Her first novel, "Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea" received three starred reviews from critics. It was also a nominee for the YALSA Teens Top 10 in 2013.

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Customer Reviews

This is a book I'd been wanting to read for awhile.
The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
Obviously some guys just like to mess around and say those things even if they won't actually do them, but Violet takes everything too seriously.
J. Madero
Ms. Tucholke's writing style is half of the reason why I love this book, because she twists the story together so beautifully.
Alyssa

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Just Another Page on August 17, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really had no clue what Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea was going to be about. I bought the book because I absolutely LOVE the cover. That being said, I found the story engaging and interesting enough to keep me hooked. A strange boy comes to rent Violet White's guesthouse and then even stranger events start to happen in her town. I think what held my interest was my curiosity about River and what he was. The problem is, we don't find out in this book. They tell what he can do, but not what he is, which annoyed me a little.

Here are some things I didn't like about the book.
1) The writing style is very awkward. The author likes to repeat words. Example - "Then he pressed his torso into mine, hard and harder and hardest, hardest, hardest." For some unknown reason, the author uses this method a lot. "Down, down, down. Dark, dark, dark." Throughout the entire book. Not only that, there are very short sentences that could have been combined with the following sentence. Because of this, the writing felt choppy. Those pesky periods made me pause and stopped the story from flowing. The entire writing style is super annoying!

2) Violet is seventeen but acts like a twelve year old. Whenever her friend, Sunshine, and her brother flirt, Violet separates them or comments about it. I thought this was very, very immature for a seventeen year old. If she didn't want to see her friend and brother flirting, she could have just walked away.

3) While I really liked River's personality, I could not believe Violet was okay with him killing people just because. River didn't regret killing and said as much to Violet. She doesn't like her brother flirting but she's okay with murder. Really?

I'm on the fence as to whether or not I'll buy the sequel. There were just too many pesky things I didn't like. I'm at the point where if I read the sequel okay, but if not...meh who cares. Beautiful cover art though!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Christina (A Reader of Fictions) TOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 26, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Sometimes I'm that guy. You know, the one who reads a book that trusted friends, ones I usually agree with, were super impressed by and ends up unenthused. The blurb for Devil (since I can't be bothered to type all of that out over and over) did give me pause, what with the focus on River coming to town. The whole thing suggests instalove, but early reviews were promising and an ARC arrived, so screw the blurb and full speed ahead! Well, turns out I should have listened to my first instincts, because both the romance and a plot twist bothered me.

In no way do I think Devil is a bad book, and there was even a brief time where I thought a 3.5 rating was coming for it. Tucholke excels especially at the horror aspects. Pretty much everything that happens ranges from eerie to totally messing with your mind to terrifying. The concept and execution of River's deal was done incredibly well. Tucholke also manages to pull off so many surprises, which upped the intensity. If you're really into horror, then I think Devil will probably be worth your time.

The other aspect that I really enjoyed was the atmosphere. As with most gothic novels, there's a sort of place out of time feel to it. Though set in the modern world, Violet's little town and her house seem caught in the past. The most popular town activity is watching old movies. Violet listens to her grandmother's music and wears her grandmother's clothing, as a way of connecting. Violet's been so alone since her grandmother Freddie died, unable to connect with her brother, who she loves but who also irritates her with the way he treats girls. Tucholke sets the scene well, with the spooky giant house, the sleepy town disconnected in some way from modernity, and the slower pace of life.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Alyssa on August 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
Book One of the Between duology
Publisher: Dial
Publication Date: August 15, 2013
Rating: 5 stars
Source: ARC borrowed from a friend

Summary (from Goodreads):

You stop fearing the devil when you're holding his hand...

Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White's sleepy, seaside town...until River West comes along. River rents the guesthouse behind Violet's crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard. Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more? Violet's grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery...who makes you want to kiss back. Violet's already so knee-deep in love, she can't see straight. And that's just how River likes it.

Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying--a debut to watch.

What I Liked:

I'm always terrified of writing a review for a book that I absolutely love and that is a new favorite because I know for a fact that I will not do this book justice. And I know that I will probably ramble a lot and say a lot of things and possibly too many things. And run the risk of spoiling things. But, here I go!

You all know that this book is my most anticipated debut of 2013, right? Heck, it's my most anticipated novel of 2013 in general (debut or not)!
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