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"Dawn before the darkness"

The Devil's Reprise - Karina Halle

I'm going to try and do this without giving anything away...



One of the greatest aspects of Karina Halle's writing is that there is no fluff, no wasted words, no unnecessary scenes. If her stories were ever turned into movies there would be nothing to cut because everything is relevant, every scene important, and each story is efficient. I say efficient even though I know that sounds worse than it should. I appreciate characters that aren't naive about what's happening around them longer than most normal people would. I love that the scenes flow smoothly and never drag. Reading The Devil's Reprise was on par with watching a great movie and being surprised when it was over, not because it ended too early, but because it was so easy to get wrapped up in the story and not realize time continued to pass.


There are so many great lines in this story, as is typical with Halle. They aren't just corny zingers, but great gems:


"The rock and roll played somewhere in the background, a reminder of where I came from. But I didn't even know if it was where I was headed."


"I felt like Paris was the closet and we were two awkward teens thrust into a game of Seven Minutes in Heaven."


"I hoped to God she couldn't see me blushing like a f*cking girl because what I'd just said was borderline hokey."


There are just so many great moments. Every time I forgot that this story is more than just a love story I was swiftly reminded of the suspense element involved. The imagery of some of the scarier moments makes me shudder. It's awesome.


And let's not forget the return of Ginger Balls!


"And I really did not expect for Red Potato to be a motherf*cking redheaded notary public of the angelic kind."


Can anyone really get enough of ginger Elvis? I loved seeing him in a different setting, knowing what I know about him from the Experiment in Terror series. He fit right in with Jacob (man, I love that guy) and Dawn, forming the "ginger triefecta."


I find myself reviewing Halle's writing more than the actual story more often than not because she consistently offers so much to appreciate that I feel it deserves a lot of attention and praise. The characters she creates are believable. They are real and relatable without being over the top or perfect. Realistic trumps perfection and idealistic and I love that. My only negative comments are that I didn't get as wrapped up in the musical aspect as I did in The Devil's Metal and the epilogue was brief. With that being said, I think that is more my hang-up than a problem with the story. I had a ridiculously strong connection with the music in The Devil's Metal and I think I had overly-high and unfair expectations for the same with The Devil's Reprise. In regards to the epilogue, I wish I knew a little more about what we are told but it really is finished in a satisfying fashion. This story is suspenseful, terrifying, endearing, and 100-percent rock and roll.