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Publisher's Summary

John Wayne Cleaver hunts demons. They've killed his neighbors, his family, and the girl he loves, but in the end he's always won. Now he works for a secret government kill team, using his gift to hunt and kill as many monsters as he can...but the monsters have noticed, and the quiet game of cat and mouse is about to erupt into a full-scale supernatural war.

John doesn't want the life he's stuck with. He doesn't want the FBI bossing him around, he doesn't want his only friend imprisoned in a mental ward, and he doesn't want to face the terrifying cannibal who calls himself the Hunter. John doesn't want to kill people. But as the song says, you can't always get what you want. John has learned that the hard way; his clothes have the stains to prove it.

When John again faces evil, he'll know what he has to do.

©2015 Dan Wells (P)2015 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Top-notch writing and well-structured suspense elements keep the story moving briskly." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic Book!

Dan Wells does a fantastic job of capturing the human condition, through the eyes of a sociopath, demons, and humans. All the joys and sorrows. All of this buried in a psychological mystery and thriller. Awesome!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great start to a second trilogy

What did you love best about The Devil's Only Friend?

John is one of my favorite fictional characters of all time. His inner thoughts both terrify and entertain me.

What other book might you compare The Devil's Only Friend to and why?

Dexter for the serial killer with a conscious aspect. The Steelheart series by Brandon Sanderson for the team aspect of taking down supernatural forces.

What about Kirby Heyborne’s performance did you like?

His reading of John is so spot on. The first books narrator is awful. The second I heard Kirby's voice I knew they had nailed it.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

For sure! It is entertaining throughout and the mystery will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Any additional comments?

I hope the producers of the audiobooks make a decision to go back and re-record the first book with Kirby as the narrator. That first book can be a chore to listen to because of how awful the narration was done.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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great

I love the series. When I'm on the go I plug in the AUX in my car and go ahead and listen. The narrator does such a great job at making you feel like you're right there with the characters. 10/10

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fantastic continuation of a great series

In a nutshell, this series is Dexter with an element of the supernatural. John Wayne Cleaver is a killer of nasties in the night, a dangerous psychopath with a valid moral prerogative and something of a hero complex.

He is NOT a sociopath, whatever he says. He's extremely high functioning on the Autism Spectrum Disorder, is highly obsessive compulsive, and has cripplingly low self-esteem. The fact that he calls himself a sociopath is a testament to how round his character is: he WANTS to be a sociopath, because its easier than caring. Instead, he cares deeply about people, can't seem to connect with them, feels crippling anxiety that only releases when he hurts something or sets something on fire, then tells himself he's a sociopath so he doesnt have to feel guilty about wanting to hurt people.

If you're sick of boring heroes, you might want to check it out. He's a real nut job, but surprisingly relatable.

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Crazed narrator for a psycho protagonist

Currently going through those episodes of Writing Excuses Season 10 which I missed, and I decided to read this book before diving into the Project in Depth episode focused on The Devil's Only Friend. I was happy to find a pitch perfect supernatural thriller that really tears into its characters. Plenty of tense scenes paired with fragile morality and broken lives. Now I'll be reading the first three books to get the lowdown on all that damage haunting the protagonist. Narrator for the audio was great - screamed and shouted and whimpered when the dialogue called for it!

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Well done, Mr Wells!

If I had to say something bad about this book, it would be the fact that John had little to live for making the dramatic moments less climactic. having said that, the story was rich with new characters, new challenges, and new Demons! Not to mention a complex plot with 'clever' ways to figure out puzzles! One heck of a book!

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Flat Narrator

The main character is a psychopath, but did the narrator have to sound so monotone? He had range, as evidence by the shouty bits at the end.

I'm not sure if it was the narrator AND the storyline, but I struggled to finish this one.

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John Cleaver finds his voice

The previous John Cleaver books were great, and we'll worth reading. This Join Cleaver book was phenomenal: something an order of magnitude beyond the earlier stories. If this is evidence of Dan Wells growth as an author, I can only say that the next is yet to come.

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Wow Great fourth book in wonderful series of book

Any additional comments?

If you have not read the three books in the series before,Do So Now!No point of going any farther if you have not.It is with profound and ever lasting thankfulness that this fourth book was written.This book is about a Anti hero serial killer.but to tell anymore just would give it all away.It may sound Dexterish.But it has alot more going for it than that.Thank you Dan Wells for at least one more romp in your demented world.

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It didn't go where I thought it would

One of the biggest compliments you can give a author is that they didn't do the expected. there were several places in this book where I thought, "Ah, I'm on to him. I'll bet..." Then, boom, it didn't happen. I wish I could talk freely about all of that, but I can't without spoiling it. I'll have to wait for someone else to read it. That's actually my only problem with books over movies: there is no post book debrief outside of the theater.

Overall, this is a painful and challenging story. It has tension from the first chapter, a lot of mystery and some intriguing suspense. Although this want my favorite of the series—second one was—it did suck me in and I finished it way earlier than I had expected. the reason that it wasn't my favorite was because I liked John's earlier arc slightly better; but that is probably a matter of personal taste for a heroe's rising journey. That admitted, I still loved where Dan Wells took John's story and how he broadened his depth.

Kirby Heyborne really stepped up the performance on this one. his characterizations are top-notch. he allows the story to unfold easily without distracting the listener by over doing it. I wish the first book could be reread by Kirby, I'd probably listen to it again—and I'd have an easier time recommending the first to newcomers. I still recommend it, just with the caveat that they will enjoy the second better for several reasons, one being Kirby's performance.

Great read. looking forward to the next. I have no clue where this could possibly go, which is exactly how I like it.