The Book Nook

*It’s true, I really can read!

THE BOOK: The Devil All The Time by Donald Ray Pollock


My feeble thoughts: Set in post WWII-rural West Virginia and Ohio, Pollock crafts this novel around a collection of characters that are simultaneously fascinating and completely disturbed.  Just as you “settle in” with one character, he jumps to/revisits a different one, each with their fair share of miserableness.  You get to sneak around with a broken veteran and his young son that take their prayers to God too far, a serial killer couple that targets innocent hitchhikers, a massively ignorant but faithful preacher and his crippled partner that are hiding from their past, and a deputy that uses the law for his own selfish exploits.  Of course, their stories braid together eventually.   Although superbly well written, the evilness in this book is hard to take.  The title is not deceiving whatsoever!

Grade: A

Would I recommend it to a stranger on the bus (trying to make his way home)? I did recommend it to Hubs (he’s reading it now), although I’m not sure it’s for everyone.

What I am reading now: I’m reading “Getting Things Done” by David Allen, so I can transform my lazy tendencies into super hero productivity.  Turns out, it’s slow going and I’m not sure I’ll finish it.  Think that’s a bad sign already?


8 thoughts on “The Book Nook

  1. I’m currently enjoying this book, though I’m only halfway through. As Candace said, the writing is superb. The characters are interesting, if tragically flawed. Looking forward to seeing what happens!

  2. How fun. I heard NPR interview Mr Pollack on the radio. He said he had a few problems with his dad and as a result the fathers in his books suffer greatly. He learned to write by copying good stories by hand to see how the sentences flowed and to pick up on good dialog. He sounded like a wonderful southern writer. The name of his home town is compelling. I can’t remember it. The story sounded so sad. Instead, I finished Catherine II by Robert Massie. It was wonderful. lv mamap

    • How incredible that you heard this author on NPR (and remembered him!). Yes, the Dads in the book are pretty awful. Fascinating!!!

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