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Devils in Exile: A Novel Hardcover – February 9, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this fast-paced crime thriller from bestseller Hogan (The Strain with Guillermo del Toro), Iraq war veteran Neal Maven faces a series of dead-end jobs and little in the way of hope for the future back in his hometown of Boston. Then he catches a glimpse of his old high school heartthrob, Danielle Vetti, and his life is changed forever. Shortly after this sighting, Neal fights off a robbery attempt, an attack witnessed by Danielle's boyfriend, who decides to hire Neal to join his gang of Iraq war vets in their enterprise of ripping off drug dealers. Neal has morals, but he decides because they're doing good, i.e., destroying drugs and hurting drug dealers, this is an honorable career move. Things go well for a while, but after Neal starts sleeping with Danielle, the whole deal starts to unravel, with explosive results. This is a compelling portrait of a good man who makes bad choices and in the end must battle his way out of a destructive and deadly life. (Feb.)
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From Booklist

Hogan, rapidly becoming a major player in the thriller genre, turns in another winning performance. Neal Maven is a Iraq War veteran, struggling to make ends meet as a civilian in Boston. When some other vets toss him a potentially lucrative job offer, which involves knocking over drug dealers, Neal joins their crew; but soon something happens to make him realize that he’s wandered too far into the dark life. There’s only one road to redemption: to turn himself around, he must fix the mistakes he’s made. But can he do so and stay alive? The author’s earlier thrillers, including The Blood Artists (1998) and Prince of Thieves (2004), showed that he was capable of constructing pulse-pounding stories that involved readers in his characters (this is also true of his recent The Strain, 2009, a modern-age vampire novel written with director Guillermo del Toro). This one is a fine addition to his résumé and a definite crowd-pleaser. --David Pitt
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; First Printing edition (February 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416558861
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416558866
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #914,497 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chuck Hogan is the New York Times bestselling author of several acclaimed novels, including THE TOWN (aka PRINCE OF THIEVES) and DEVILS IN EXILE. THE TOWN was awarded the Hammett Prize for excellence in crime writing, and made into the movie starring Ben Affleck, Jeremy Renner, and Jon Hamm. He is also the co-author, with Oscar-winning filmmaker Guillermo Del Toro, of the internationally bestselling STRAIN trilogy: THE STRAIN, THE FALL, and THE NIGHT ETERNAL.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I discovered Hogan's books by accident a few years ago and I am glad I did. Each novel has been a great read and Devils in Exile continued the trend.

I was unable to put the book down. This was one of those rare novels that I was compelled to read in one sitting. Lucky today was a 'snow day' in New York.

The story is faced paced and gained momentum with each chapter. Too often the story based upon the troubled hero turns into a cliche, Hogan to his credit, did not take the easy way out. Unlike many novels, the ending did the story justice.

If you have never read Chuck Hogan, start now and read them all.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Keith Thomson on February 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Green Beret Neal Maven is the ultimate warrior, with comparable smarts and a dry wit. Tragically, when he returns home to Boston from the War in Iraq, society has little use for him. As author Chuck Hogan puts it: People see not a battle-tested hero but a potential Travis Bickle. When they say, "Great to have you back," what they really mean is, "Now please go away again."

The best work Maven can find is parking cars. At nights. Supplemented by shifts at a minor-league convenience store. On the whole, despite his considerable skills, there's no place for him.

Until he meets a dynamic group of fellow veterans who use military tactics to intercept major narcotics deals. They keep the cash and--doing Robin Hood one better--destroy the drugs. The DEA regards them only as hoods, however. And the drug dealers they've left empty-handed would like to kill them, for starters.

Thus Hogan launches Maven and readers onto a suspenseful, breakneck ride with as many twists as can be found in the thriller genre--or anywhere.

Equally remarkable are the original and multi-dimensional characters, a vivid Boston backdrop, and prose laced with wry humor and crafted so artfully (though without a single superfluous syllable) as to put you right smack in the action--you will practically feel the bullets tearing apart the air all around you.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By BJ on March 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"Devils In Exile" is the real deal, a top notch thriller / crime drama that is realistic, current & gripping!

I first discovered Chuck Hogan after reading his last novel The Strain, co-written with movie producer Guillermo Del Toro. After finding out Chuck Hogan has alot of other very well written books - Prince of Thieves, The Killing Moon, I couldn't wait to read more from him. Then just last month I see he has a new novel coming out and I couldn't resist reading it.

Great characters, great dialogue, great action with realistic but still exciting scenes & a not your usual "all is well" ending!

Main character Neal Maven is freshly back from his tour in Iraq. Unfortunately those skills that kept you alive & made you special there, don't generally work in your favor here. Maven's working lackluster jobs until he meets smooth talking Brad Royce. Royce has a group of fellow veterans working for him and he wants Maven to join. They rob drug dealers of their money & they flush their drugs. Maven joins up, but it isn't long until he starts asking himself, where does Brad Royce get his inside information. Throw in a nosy DEA agent, innocent bystanders and two Jamaicans hell bent on killing and you've got a great read!

I was especially impressed with Hogan's (Tomorrow Man) theory that Brad Royce uses to get Maven into the group!

I hope to see more of Neal Maven and I think Chuck Hogan plans to deliver on that.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Man of La Book on June 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book starts out great and with a subject which I identified with. Neal Maven, a loser in high school who turned out to be a lethal fighting machine in Iraq, is coming back home to...nothing. He works in dead end jobs, not making any money and quickly on his way to a life of mind-boggling boredom and solitary existence. In an instant of blind luck he impresses a man who pulls him out of the ordinary into the extraordinary life of a vigilante group that robs drug money. The group creates havoc on the drug lords of the Boston area - but things are as they seem and as Maven finds out, he is playing a dangerous game.

This is a rough, fast, flashy, tough and smart action thriller. There are twists I saw, but - best of all - the main twists I did not see. Hogan stays away from the troubled hero clichés and the characters in this book are created very well.

This is my first Chuck Hogan book - but I'm picking up the others hoping they are half as good.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Neal Reynolds VINE VOICE on March 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I read lots and lots of current crime thrillers, but honestly, this is the grittiest I've read for a long time. An ex Green Beret is unable to find decent employment after his discharge from the armed forces until he's offered a uniquely dangerous and illegal, but fulfilling job as part of a group of Vietnam vets who interrupt drug deals, keeping the money but destroying the product. But not all is as it seems and the novel builds to a truly explosive climax. One can hope for a sequel as there is an open end here. And as this is the first Hogan novel I've read, I'll definitely be reading his others.
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