Desolation (Demon Road 2) by Derek Landry

 

 

Amber has stopped her parents cannibalistic ritual but she’s still on the run from the demon they made a deal with and the minions he’s sent for her.  Staying in the small town, Desolation Hill, she finds out the town’s terrible secret while trying to stay alive.

This is the second book in the s books by Derek Landy and it’s not bad. I’m not a big fan of this book, slightly prefer the first one, but its reasonably good.

Pros:

  • Some good quips here and there.
  • A couple of good descriptions like that of Edgar and the effects of what’s happened to him since the previous book
  • Someone finally likes human Amber more than Demon Amber
  • Made me think of some Buffy episode
  • LBGT character
  • Amber’s decision at the end of the book

Cons:

  • Too many coincidences
  • Action just bluring together
  • Kelly too judgemental at end
  • Characters blur together
  • Comments on human Amber being ugly

Now the characters fall into a few groups:- the town folk, Milo with Amber, Vigil and friend, Kelly’s group, those after Amber. The last group has some subgroups like serial killers, hellhounds and Amber’s parents with friends.

The main character, Amber, I still don’t like much. I like that she’s a bit of a fangirl and she’s morally ambiguous. However, like with the previous book I found her overly judgemental, I find her more of a hypocrite in this book than anything else. She’s become harder and less empathic. She’s very judgmental of the killers that she meets – not saying serial killers for all of them since not all of them go out of their way to kill people, some kill just to protect secrets – which is the right reaction but she’s ignoring that amount of people she – or got Milo – to kill to survive or she’s partially responsible for. The bodies are piling up and just get bigger here.  That being said I really liked her decision at the end of the book.

Milo was just sort of there.

Kelly’s group just blured into one another. I liked their dog and Kelly until she became too judgemental of Amber. I got annoyed when she said Amber was a good person since they’d barely known each other a couple of days and I’m not sure how much of that showed her as a good person – not saying she did anything terrible but she didn’t do anything ‘good’. I can’t really tell you anything about the rest of the group, nothing really stood out about them.

The people after Amber. Her parents were the same as last book, funny but evil. The serial killers blur into one another. I only really remember the first one but that’s because it reminded me of a scene on Game of Thrones, the Night King – I think- at the end of the Hearthome battle where he’s showing off to Jon. Hellhounds were just there but one of there scenes reminded me of a scene in Buffy, in one of the first two episodes of Season Six with the bikers and what they do to the Buffy-bot.

 

Because I remember the first book I expected it to be more episodic. It was a sort of quest – driving – quest – driving format like a season of Supernatural. It has a season arc but each episode is in a new place with a new monster with little bits that relate to the season arc. This book was a different. It’s mostly all in the same place, the same town. It’s not a bad thing necessarily, I just wasn’t expecting it.

Not sure what it is but the writing has a cinematic feel to it, like it lends itself to a more visual media than a book. It does have enough action for that to work… maybe a bit too much for a book. From  around the 60% mark to near the last bit – Hell’s Night- there was just so much action happening at once that it blured together, the best parts were when the pacing has slowed down like in Amber’s big decision scene at the end or the first couple of chapters. The first two chapter would be perfect opening for a TV show, as I was reading it I could almost imagine the music and the camera angles.

 

I’m beyond fed up of people calling Amber in human form ugly, including herself. It happens so often that it made the one character who didn’t stand out. Actually that is mostly why I remembered them, because of their reaction to Amber. Surely not everyone is so rude to keep mentioning it?

As far as continuity went from the previous book I only have two questions:-

  • Why wasn’t Glen used or at least mentioned more? And
  • How is all the food and milk still fresh enough to eat at Amber’s home? She hadn’t been there for weeks and I assume her parents hadn’t either since they were following her? Random thing to notice, I know, but I noticed.

Overall, it was a reasonably good book. I liked reading it but lots of things just merged together that it was hard to remember details. There were good little moments like quips, humour and descriptions but I had some issues with how everyone treats human Amber. I would recommend this to fans of Derek Landy or those who liked the first book.

 

 

 

Goodreads Link:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26791238-desolation

 

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