Published by House On The Hill
More information can be found on the author’s website
Review by Georgia Cuthbertson
The Devil’s Snare is a mystery hidden in a secret. The plot and characters are so shrouded in doubt it makes the reader unsure who to believe, where to turn and what to trust. It’s a story with conflicting evidence that will leave you turning the page for more.
Donovan’s main character Eddie Flynn is an interesting character to read. Sarcastic with dry wit and a natural draw to a challenge, he’s the type of investigator that will leave no stone, no matter how small, unturned. Donovan creates a likeable character that, despite the serious case, can make you chuckle at his commentary. Other supporting characters, like Lucy and Hackett, are easy to distinguish but don’t overpower the story. This is hard to ensure with so many characters having input in the plot. However, Donovan manages to weave the characters in enough for you to have a sense of what the characters are like without losing them or the plot in the process.
As for the story, that in itself is a complicated ball of secrets wrapped in lies with a pretty bow of “did not see that coming” on top. It has a complicated plot, but one that never loses itself or the reader. The chapters were surprisingly small, with some only a page long, and, at times, like Eddie, you felt as if the case had been left too long. The chances of finding out what happened to Christa seemed slimmer than ever. And yet it was the short chapters that had you turning the pages. Suddenly, the evidence piled in, the facts added up and the true fate of Christa was only chapters away. This was a brilliant use of format to help keep up the tension and pace.
While I have never really been in to the crime genre, this book is certainly a great example of it. Surprisingly clean without the typical crude imagery and gore, the novel hooks you in through characters and the plot, with well thought-out twists.
It is a wonderful story that is a brilliant accompaniment to Donovan’s previous Northern Crime Prize Winning book, Behind Closed Doors. I recommend anyone, whether they’re interested in the crime genre or not, to try this book. I assure you, you will not be disappointed. The missing case of Christa Barber will haunt your days and nights through your time reading.