Audie Award Nominee, Best Teens Category, 2013
Something dark and evil has awakened....
Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City - and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It's 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.
Evie worries her uncle will discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.
As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho is hiding a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened....
This audiobook includes an introduction read by Libba Bray.
©2012 Libba Bray (P)2012 Listening Library
I purchased this because I had enjoyed the author's previous works, even though the premise and blurb didn't really sound that enticing. I didn't know much about the '20s, and wasn't that interested in it, but I needed an audiobook for the commute so I took a chance. I'm so glad I did! The author brings the '20s and all its sparkling energy to life in this book, and I really felt immersed in it, in a way that I rarely do with YA novels. The narrator did an excellent job giving each character a unique voice, and capturing the inflection and tone of speech in the '20s. She even sounded great singing some of the songs!
Unlike the other reviewer, I thought the characters were well fleshed out and true to life. I liked reading from all of their perspectives, even though there were a couple of characters that would probably annoy the hell out of me if I knew them in real life.
Best of all, the story moves FAST, which is especially impressive considering how complex and layered the plot is. There's a lot of stuff going on at once, but Ms. Bray manages to keep all the balls up in the air and the pages (figuratively) turning. The scary parts of the book are genuinely scary--another thing I have never seen in a YA novel.
One caveat: the story starts out a bit slow, and the main character, Evie, comes off as a brat when we are first introduced to her. It also takes a while for modern ears to get used to the '20s talk without snorting and thinking of one of those cheesy noir detective movies. Hang in there. It's definitely worth it.
I really wanted to like this book more than I did. It was a fairly enjoyable listen (largely due to the fine narration), but the story leaves quite a bit to be desired.
I believe that a young adult novel at its best will appeal to all audiences. Every adult has survived adolescence and can relate to that tender age - exciting, frightening, heartbreaking. But the characters - young and old alike - are significantly underdeveloped. Their dialogues and backgrounds often feel cliched and contrived and while I don't dislike them, it is difficult to empathize with them.
The story is an interested premise. I loved the backdrop of 1920s New York City. Add a mysterious serial killer with a supernatural twist, and you have the beginnings of what could be a fascinating tale! Unfortunately, the story often gets lost in melodrama and conclusion-jumping. The connections between events fall short for me. And the characters are always surprisingly calm (and sometimes even seem excited) about the horrifying events that are unfolding around them.
The story is a strange juxtaposition between writing that seems to be intended for a younger audience, but with subject matter for an older one. This story had a lot of potential, but despite my best hopes, it was largely unmet. Perhaps the second book will bring more depth to the characters and their stories.
I'm an omnivore when it comes to books - I'll read anything, but I especially like mysteries and historical fiction - and I fall all over myself when the two genres combine! I also love sci-fi, high adventure, romance (sometimes), crime & detection, horror...well, like I said. Omnivore.
The era, the 20s slang, the ominous threat of supernatural doom, the realistic and palpable frustrations of the young heroine, the variety and diversity of the characters! Great stuff.
The main character Evie is great, not too Mary Sue-ish but a bit naive and a little insensitive. I loved the complex and troubled Theta, and her roommate Henry seemed like a sweetheart, too. Uncle Will? Mabel? Jericho? Sam? All wonderful. But my favorite? Naughty John! Otherwise they wouldn't have had anything to do...
The opening scene! A ouija board! A carefree flapper party! And a terrible evil unleashed upon an unsuspecting world!
I wished I could have read it when I was 17.
The author does a good job fleshing out each of the different characters and giving them a unique voice. Evie in particular is good example of how to do a flawed protagonist (she can be quite selfish, short sighted and even annoying at times) who is still heroic. Of all of the point of view characters so far I’ve enjoyed Memphis and Theta the most. Hopefully in the next books Mabel, Henry and Sam (not to mention the Chinese waitress) will get a little more attention.
Be warned that a lot of the mysteries surrounding the characters are not resolved, and are being saved for future books.
Overall the reader is good giving the characters distinct voices.One problem though is that she should really brush up on her pronunciation. There are quite a few words she just doesn’t say correctly (rifling in particular is used often enough in the book to be very annoying).
Libba Bray's trilogy that begins with A Great and Terrible Beauty was wonderful. I've read, and listened, to each book many times. Her next offering, Beauty Queens, was the worst book I've ever listened to on Audible since 2003. And this, The Diviners, is the second.
The main character is unsympathetic, to the point of being unlikable. Most of the other characters are flat. Apparently the author thought so too because in the end, there is no explanation of what happens to them.
Its not frightening. Though there are two scenes that are sickening and unnecessary - a wife being beaten (graphically and at great length) and an animal being sacrificed. Shame on the author for trying for violent titillation in a book that's supposed to be for young people.
The narrator is okay when just narrating but she contributes to the unlike-ability of the heroine, her very high voice with no emotion persuading the listener how shallow the character is. The two main male characters have apparently had lobotomies, they are performed with such tedium.
Do try Ms. Bray's trilogy but give this one a miss.
This is a great listen, kept me on the treadmill just to hear more of the story. This book took me to another place and time, characters were .....well fun. January LaVoy is the best reader I have heard, I could see the different characters just with her tone. Loved the whole enchilada.
This is one of the best audiobooks I have ever listened to.
I loved the characters.
Everything!! From the raspy scary voice, the preaching, and the singing. Well done!
Libba Bray - where does this woman's imagination come from? From mad cows to beauty queens to the occult? The occult-based murders in this story almost made me stop the book, but maybe I am more easily scared by most. What kept me going were two things: 1) main character Evie O'Neill is the ultimate 1920's gal (way fun) and an amateur detective (love mysteries) and 2) narrator January LaVoy pulls you in with a wide array of character voices. The humor also had a little to do with reading this because while Libba Bray will probably tell you she is funny, I admit that she is right. Enjoy this creepy, humorous, historically cool story, but beware, while there is a very satisfying ending, this book is the first of a series/collection.... and now I have to wait.
Lots of bad cliches and slow moving through much of it. The ending is an obvious set up for a sequel.
Heroes x X-Men set in 1920's NYC, without the charm or great back stories.
Entertaining, but I would not recommend it to anyone over 13.
The way it was narrated by January LaVoy and how she did a great job with each characters voice
Not sure its kind of like a mashup of a couple of different books
her voice is very easy to get used to
yes but everyone needs sleep ;D
don't think just buy
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