Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Review of Vicious Circle

Book #8. Vicious Circle, by Mike Carey. Hardcover.

This is the sequel to Carey’s The Devil You Know (reviewed here). Some time has passed since the prior novel, and the dead have continued to make appearances across London. This has made people with Felix Castor’s skills as a “freelance exorcist” necessary. But as in-demand as his services are, his business is still struggling.

Along with consulting for the local police, Castor has returned to his “supernatural services” business, but he’s barely making ends meet. The action in this novel starts when a client hires him to locate a stolen ghost – the whole “ghost thing” is still pretty new, but this is not the way that ghosts are supposed to operate. Felix is also trying to keep his eyes on an old friend in a private hospital, who is hosting an ever-more disturbingly violent demon. A supernatural “colleague” of Felix asks for his help when a local church is by a dark presence.

It turns out that all of these events (and more) are not just connected, but they are connected to Castor. And worse things are on their way. Many of the characters that we met in the prior novel appear here, including Felix’s priest brother and Juliet the succubus.

The specific plot in this book is darker and more gruesome than in the prior novel, but this raising of the stakes adds tension to the story. Carey’s ability to combine supernatural action with compelling character moments makes this a highly readable novel. I enjoy Carey’s comic book series The Unwritten, and have found his novel-writing equally solid.

I enjoyed this read, and look forward to picking up more novels in the series as time goes by.

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