Personal thoughts – this is a YA read and quite short for a novel, so readers shouldn’t expect anything too involved.
It follows Grubb Grady’s life after his encounter with the demon, Lord Loss. After moving in with his Uncle Dervish, he begins to recover from the trauma. He makes a new friend, a young boy that believes he is Dervish’s son, and learns that various members of the family could practice magic, but worse still, some suffer from a terrible curse.
This story is written for YA’s upto 12 years, which I felt causes some conflict of interest for the plot. The scenes that involve Lord Loss and his demons are quite graphic. And there are other graphic scenes regarding the Grady family curse. However, the overall story is easy reading, which makes these graphic scenes seem out of place. I felt the horror elements weren’t appropriate for very young readers, and with the story been simplistic in it's tone this left me feeling frustrated. I felt if it the plot had been aimed at older teens this would have fitted in well with the horror theme.
Overall the story progresses quickly, too quickly at times some situations are merely brushed upon. Any chess players may appreciate that aspect of the story, as the Grady family are accomplished chess players, which has a prominent role in the story.
I did find some of the plot quite interesting and engaging, those mostly dealing with Lord Loss. Despite the book aimed at youngsters, I do feel that shouldn’t mean that all issues within the plot are brush over, as this left the character’s seeming shallow and their plight unimportant. I had expected a far better crafted book from this author, as his Vampire series is more engaging, with better developed characters.