The Good Demon by Jimmy Cajoleas | Review

I took the long way on my bike, just to remind myself how much I hated where I lived. I know most teenagers probably say that about where they grew up, especially if it’s a small town like this one. And they probably mean that their hometown is slow and boring and that nothing ever happens there…So, yeah, my town is boring, but that’s not what I’m talking about.

Clare – in The Good Demon

After Clare’s dad dies of a drug overdose, she meets a mysterious demon in the woods who she invites to take up residence in her for comfort and protection. Years later, Clare is forced to part from her demon by a local preacher and his teenage son. Known only as Her, Clare’s demon prepared for this day, laying out clues and a plan for how Clare could get Her back. Along her journey to get Her back, we see Clare’s small town. Readers from small towns will likely recognize the divisions between faiths and class and power.

Through Clare’s nail-biting journey, readers are asked to reckon with issues related to loss; drug addiction; the wealthy powerful and power-hungry; loneliness and isolation; and both good and bad things about being from a small town.

This Whippoorwill Award winner is a fast-paced thriller of a novel that will hook readers as well as offer them ample opportunity to consider their own relationships to the (small and/or rural) places they claim.

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