I was given an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
Going into it I was really excited but did think I was getting another Head Full of Ghosts; there would seem to be something supernatural going on (or not?) and then everything would turn out to be explainable. Even halfway through Devil’s Rock I was still expecting that structure and started to feel disappointed. Well in the end Tremblay does not disappoint. I was so punched in the gut towards the end that I stopped at 80% and left it for a day before I could go on and then I received several more punches. I think I was literally winded by it at some point. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone.
That said, a perfect book is a rare thing. This could have been a five star book but I found two problems with it. Firstly, I felt like the cops and adults weren’t acting like cops and adults. The cops were weirdly absent and the adults were weirdly distant from them as well. I felt police should have been posted at the house the whole time and the mother could have asked them for help with some things that she took on alone. This didn’t make sense to me and brought me out of the story at times.
Secondly, the beginning was slow for the first fourth or even third of the book. Each chapter would bore and bore and then stun at the very end only to return to the next chapter being a bore and then stunning again and so forth. I’m a big believer in the author’s obligation to hook the reader immediately and keep on hooking.