12 March, 2013

#BookReview :: The Diviners (The Diviners #1) by Libba Bray

Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.


As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.




Evie is a carefree, outgoing, outspoken and charming girl whose personality is too much for the small town where she stays. Her parents send her off to New York to live with her uncle and she is only too happy about it. Soon enough she settles in with her uncle, a curator of The Museum of American Folklore, and life in New York. But things soon start to spiral as a number of occult-based murders come into light. Evie and her uncle get into the thick of things as Evie’s secret may be the most important key to solving these murders.

The first thing about this book that stands out is its plot. A number of sub-plots with a variety of interesting characters lends to the complexity of the plot as a whole. Each subplot is important towards working to the final solution and that one factor makes this story stand apart from its counterparts. It’s a detail oriented plot based in the 1920s’ and while I have very little idea about New York in the 1920s’ the narrative was good enough to picturise a black and white era (funny how that happens!). But I dearly wished for a bit more description about the locations and surrounding, even though that would make this book lengthier.

The characters were all interesting. Evie being the protagonist has the biggest role to play. She is an easy to fall in love character with her bubbly and straightforward nature. Her Uncle Will too has his moments quite frequently. Then there are a host of other characters that lend colour and spice to the story, like Jericho, Theta, Memphis and Mabel. It feels as if the absence of any one of these supporting characters would have caused a serious hole to appear in the plot.

Despite being almost 600 page novel, ‘The Diviners’ managed to keep its firm grip on me from the first chapter to the last word. The author has incorporated many shades of paranormal factors, murder, adventure, drama, secrets and revelations into the story. Everyone will find something they love about this book. Even though the book provides for a satisfactory ending, I wish there was more and so I will be sure to pick up the second book in the series when it comes out.

Reading this book was an awesome experience and time well spent.



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