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November 2, 2011 / Leslie

Review: The White Devil

The White Devil
by Justin Evans
Read by: Christian Coulson

Genre: Gothic Thriller
Publisher: Harper Audio
Publish Date: May 10, 2011
Format: Downloadable Audio | 12 Hours 53 Minutes
Rating: 3½ of 5

Set at Harrow, a 400 year old British Boarding school known for educating England’s finest families, this book is part mystery, part thriller and part ghost story.

Andrew Taylor’s parents have shipped him off to this prestigious school with the hopes that the strict discipline there will help with their son’s troubled past, but trouble seems to follow Andrew. Within days of his arrival one of his schoolmates has mysteriously died. To make matters worse, Andrew begins to see a ghost, a rather moody and nasty ghost. Andrew bears an uncanny resemblance to Lord Byron, and that is what is causing the 200 year old ghost to appear. Andrew becomes obsessed with Lord Byron and the ghost and soon he and his friends are in mortal danger.

The story was well-written and has all the ingredients for a scary ghost story, however I found it to be more of a mystery than a ghostly thriller. The book starts out slowly and as the characters develop the pace begins to pick up, accelerating quickly in the final chapters. By this time I was more focused on the mystery than the haunting and wanted to know what it was that the ghost wanted from Andrew and why. In the end we do get our answers although I did find the conclusion to be a little abrupt.

I listened to the audio version and perhaps listening while walking around in the daytime rather than reading in the evening gave it a less than scary feel. The audio production was good and the narrator, Christian Coulson, did a nice job. His reading was clear and easy to listen to, and an American accent for Andrew made him easy to distinguish from the other characters. As a side note, Christian Coulson is the actor that played Tom Riddle in the movie Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

Overall I liked the story even though it wasn’t as scary as I was expecting. It had enough creepy and ghostly moments to entertain me and should please most gothic fans.

The White Devil was one of my choices for the R.I.P. Challenge. For more reviews from participants in the RIP Challenge, head over to the RIP Review Site.
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Source: Downloadable audio provided by the publisher for review.

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6 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. sagustocox / Nov 2 2011 4:22 am

    This sounds interesting. I like ghostly stories with a bit of mystery. Thanks for the review.

    Like

  2. Leeswammes / Nov 2 2011 5:36 am

    I liked it better than you. I found it reasonaly scary at moments. I loved the setting and the idea behind the story. Maybe walking around doing other things didn’t give the same feel for the atmosphere.

    Like

    • Leslie / Nov 2 2011 8:48 am

      I think it would have been scarier if I read it rather than listened. Working in the sunny garden took the chill out of several very creepy scenes towards the end.

      Like

  3. BermudaOnion / Nov 2 2011 7:47 am

    This would probably be plenty scary for me! I’m intrigued because it’s set in a boarding school.

    Like

  4. TheBookGirl / Nov 4 2011 2:07 pm

    The fact that it was not as scary as you expected is actually a plus for me because I tend to be pretty wimpy when it comes to the scary stuff. Like Kathy, the setting appeals to me.

    Like

    • Leslie / Nov 4 2011 2:18 pm

      I tend to judge scary against Stephen King’s novels which on my creepy, scary scale are pretty close to a ten.

      Like

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