We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
 >   > 
The Devil All the Time | [Donald Ray Pollock]

The Devil All the Time

Set in rural southern Ohio and West Virginia, The Devil All the Time follows a cast of compelling and bizarre characters from the end of World War II to the 1960s. There’s Willard Russell, tormented veteran of the carnage in the South Pacific, who can’t save his beautiful wife, Charlotte, from an agonizing death by cancer no matter how much sacrifi­cial blood he pours on his “prayer log.”
Regular Price:$28.00
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

From the acclaimed author of Knockemstiff—called “powerful, remarkable, exceptional” by the Los Angeles Times—comes a dark and riveting vision of America that delivers literary excitement in the highest degree.

In The Devil All the Time, Donald Ray Pollock has written a novel that marries the twisted intensity of Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers with the religious and Gothic over­tones of Flannery O’Connor at her most haunting.

Set in rural southern Ohio and West Virginia, The Devil All the Time follows a cast of compelling and bizarre characters from the end of World War II to the 1960s. There’s Willard Russell, tormented veteran of the carnage in the South Pacific, who can’t save his beautiful wife, Charlotte, from an agonizing death by cancer no matter how much sacrifi­cial blood he pours on his “prayer log.” There’s Carl and Sandy Henderson, a husband-and-wife team of serial kill­ers, who troll America’s highways searching for suitable models to photograph and exterminate. There’s the spider-handling preacher Roy and his crippled virtuoso-guitar-playing sidekick, Theodore, running from the law. And caught in the middle of all this is Arvin Eugene Russell, Willard and Charlotte’s orphaned son, who grows up to be a good but also violent man in his own right.

Donald Ray Pollock braids his plotlines into a taut narrative that will leave readers astonished and deeply moved. With his first novel, he proves himself a master storyteller in the grittiest and most uncompromising American grain.

©2011 Donald Ray Pollock (P)2011 Random House

What the Critics Say

"If Pollock’s powerful collection Knockemstiff was a punch to the jaw, his follow-up, a novel set in the violent soul-numbing towns of southern Ohio and West Virginia, feels closer to a mule’s kick, and how he draws these folks and their inevitably hopeless lives without pity is what the kick’s all about." (Publishers Weekly)

"The God-fearing hard-luck characters who populate Donald Ray Pollock’s debut novel, The Devil All the Time, move through the southern outlands of Ohio and the isolated hollows of West Virginia like figures in a collective nightmare of poverty, addiction, superstition, and crime" (Lisa Shea, ELLE magazine)

“This novel fulfills the promise made by Pollock’s debut collection, Knockemstiff. He is a real writer, and The Devil All The Time hits you like a telegram from Hell slid under your door at three o’clock in the morning.” (William Gay, author of Provinces of Night and The Long Home)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (166 )
5 star
 (72)
4 star
 (64)
3 star
 (19)
2 star
 (8)
1 star
 (3)
Overall
4.2 (145 )
5 star
 (62)
4 star
 (59)
3 star
 (15)
2 star
 (5)
1 star
 (4)
Story
4.4 (143 )
5 star
 (82)
4 star
 (47)
3 star
 (11)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Kathy Bedford, TX, United States 08-04-11
    Kathy Bedford, TX, United States 08-04-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    716
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4615
    132
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    230
    117
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "WOW What a FIND!"

    WOW! What a ride! Wonderful (if bizarre) characters, taut narrative, plot full of unexpected turns and extraordinary narration by Mark Bramhall (but then that is the only way he ever narrates -- extraordinary talent and skill)

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melinda UT 06-22-13
    Melinda UT 06-22-13 Member Since 2009

    So hooked by audio that I have to read books aloud. *If my reviews help, please let me know.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7366
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    568
    226
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4094
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Comedy Blockbuster in Hades"

    Good Hell! If the devil himself crawled up from his fiery abyss and penned his own brand of comedy book, it would probably fall short of the grotesque violence and hopeless despair that chokes the pages of Pollock's very unfunny novel. If you have no taste for Natural Born Killers, No Country For Old Men, American Psycho, or the works of Jim Thompson or Quentin Tarantino, you are in the wrong section of the library. The Devil All the Time is gritty, hard-core, hard-boiled pulp fiction that pummels the reader relentlessly with perverse atrocities delivered by a most bizarre and pitiful casting that only a nightmare could imagine.

    If there is any humanity that escapes the borders of Knockemstiff, USA, it is the central character, Arvin Russell -- and he grew up offering blood sacrifices at a*prayer log* (surround by crucifixes adorned with unfortunate critters) with his traumatized WWII vet father, praying that God would deliver his mother from the cancer eating her tormented body. Pollock's RFD route in Knockemstiff includes the team of a spider eating preacher and his crippled pedophile side kick, hiding out at a carnival after the preacher kills his wife so he can raise her from the dead at his next sermon; a sadistic sheriff that earns a little money on the side as a hired hit man; another preacher whose specialty is de-flowering young members of his flock; Carl and Sandy Henderson--she a waitress/prostitute, he a fat hygiene-deficient *splatter* photographer--a tag team serial killer duo that cruises the highways looking for *models* (men) to rape, torture, and photograph.

    The saving grace with this kind of material is Pollock's obvious talent and smart, sharp, sparse style that is unapologetically raw. He entwines his novel with God, guilt, poverty, and violence, into a tight plot that ramps up the intensity as it propels this motley crew toward a climactic showdown. What is it that compels us to strain our necks to gawk at a pile-up? I couldn't look away, and couldn't put this down. In small doses, (maybe with some Disney in-between) I intend on devouring everything Pollock writes. I highly recommend BUT only to the truly iron-gutted veterans of dark fiction--you have to have the stomach for this kind of book. Between you and me, I'm a little disgusted with myself for liking it so much. [Disgust Level Comparisons: American Psycho, Dark Places, The Wasp Factory, Haunted.]

    20 of 24 people found this review helpful
  •  
    daniel Hamlin, WV, United States 09-11-13
    daniel Hamlin, WV, United States 09-11-13 Member Since 2010

    I am a D-Bag.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    31
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    103
    39
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "dark, gritty, awesome"

    This is the kind of book that never gets written because people want sunshine and happy endings. What ever happened to these kind of books. I recommend this all the way to people who want to listen to the raw dark under belly of America.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael WASHINGTON, DC, United States 04-18-12
    Michael WASHINGTON, DC, United States 04-18-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    19
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "New favorite book!"

    What an excellent story! The book is so well written, and the story so greatly performed, that the listener is thrust right into the depressing world the author created. The characters are so well fleshed out that I found myself rooting for most of them despite how awful they are. It was really hard to put the headphones down, and I'm sure to give this book another listen rather sooner than later.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanie Clearlake, CA, United States 02-07-12
    Stephanie Clearlake, CA, United States 02-07-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    39
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    35
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    5
    12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Looking for Something Different?"

    I am always looking for something offbeat and different and my wish was granted with this book! This is a dark story with unexpected twists and turns. I truly enjoyed the narration as well, and found myself listening to the story long after my commute was over.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Overland, KS, United States 12-19-11
    Richard Overland, KS, United States 12-19-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    110
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good But Rough"
    What made the experience of listening to The Devil All the Time the most enjoyable?

    It’s a captivating story, hard to put down, but it’s also extremely rough. The dreadful & immoral element of man is pervasive in nearly every character, I felt dirty like I needed to clean my mind of the filth, however it’s very well written, and intriguing.


    Have you listened to any of Mark Bramhall’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julia Venice, CA, United States 09-16-11
    Julia Venice, CA, United States 09-16-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    87
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    50
    23
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "You're a sick man, Mr Pollock,"

    ...AND I LOVE IT. This story is brutal and grisly, gritty and realistic, shocking, nihilistic, sarcastic and constantly amazing. Read by an obvious master...Mark Bramhall propels the listener deep in to this expertly woven world. Please-oh-please write more D. R. Pollock.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    anne grand rapids, mi, United States 11-12-12
    anne grand rapids, mi, United States 11-12-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dark, Dark, Dark."
    If you could sum up The Devil All the Time in three words, what would they be?

    All the characters in this book are not only flawed humans, they are very damaged. It was difficult to find someone to cheer for. It took me a month to complete this book. Very sad, very violent, incredibly sadistic individuals.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Devil All the Time?

    Prayer log scenes. The desperation of husband to save his beautiful wife.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Favorite? Hmmm... I enjoyed the antics of Theodore & Jesse.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Not suitable for for depressed persons. Should not be viewed during cold grey rainy season. THIS FILM IS NOT INTENDED FOR THE MENTALLY OFF BALANCED.


    Any additional comments?

    Not a good bed time read. I found this book interesting, the characters were well developed... But damn its dark.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Northfield, NJ, United States 09-10-12
    Matthew Northfield, NJ, United States 09-10-12

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sick and twisted and smart characters"

    Donald Ray Pollack is a master of the Southern-grotesque. His characters are cleverly engineered backwoods brilliance, not the dumb hicks you may come to expect from some ahem, other, authors. The story focuses on Arvin, the son of Willard Russell, whose childhood is consumed with sacrificial blood spilling on a "prayer log." No animal is safe from Willard sacrificial log, and Arvin soon learns no human life is safe either. As the story progresses we are introduced to more characters, each sick in their own way, and the story unfolds as each encounters the son of Willard Russell... The performance can be a bit flat at times, but overall a very entertaining read. If you like Danny Woodrell, or James Lee Burke, you will probably enjoy Pollack as well.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Mechanicsburg, PA, United States 04-09-12
    Robert Mechanicsburg, PA, United States 04-09-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    36
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    169
    32
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Could NOT Turn it Off! The Devil took me in!"
    Where does The Devil All the Time rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is among the most captivating audiobooks I've listened to since joining audible. The narration by Mark Bramhall is outstanding.


    What other book might you compare The Devil All the Time to and why?

    I can compare this to


    What about Mark Bramhall’s performance did you like?

    Mark Bramhall's narration was pitch perfect. He carried the accents and tone throughout that added to the written form. I never wanted to turn off the audio. The narration and stories were so captivating.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I loved the title as is.


    Any additional comments?

    I hope to see more from this author very soon....I'm hooked!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 21 results PREVIOUS123NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.