Thursday, August 1, 2013

Review: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
(Between # 1)
By: April Genevieve Tucholke
Pub. Date: August 15, 2013
Publisher: Dial
Pages: 368
Source: Netgalley and TLA 2013

I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.

You stop fearing the devil when you’re holding his hand…

Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White’s sleepy, seaside town…until River West comes along. River rents the guesthouse behind Violet’s crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard. Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more? Violet’s grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery...who makes you want to kiss back. Violet’s already so knee-deep in love, she can’t see straight. And that’s just how River likes it.

Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying—a debut to watch.
Part of me debated if I should even review this book. I was not a fan at all. I didn't connect to the characters, I didn't like the writing, and there were too many plot holes to even be able to take this story seriously. I gave it 2.5 stars because I was interested in the mystery of River and what was going to happen, which is the only reason I kept on reading.

Violet and her twin brother Luke live alone in a huge house while there parents are off creating art in Europe. But the house is run down and they need money to pay the bills and buy food. Violet decides to rent out the guest house and the renter turns out to be River. A young guy who lies about everything and has a very shady past. First off-I know that parents not being present in YA happens a lot, but the fact that their parents didn't even care that their children didn't have food!! I couldn't get past that. Then there is River. I know he was supposed to be mysterious and we weren't supposed to know who or what he really was but c'mon! He was just ridiculous. I can't say much because I don't want to give anything away but I will say that he murdered people and Violet kept on going back to him. What the hell!

Violet was someone that I couldn't stand-maybe even more then River. She would tell River to stay away from her since he was a psycho murderer, but then she would get lonely and sleep in his bed. The two of them really pissed me off. Then when his brother comes to town and has to slap someone before he lights a little kid on fire, Violet gives him crap for slapping him. So to recap: It is ok to murder for fun, but not to slap someone before they murder a child. Ok got it. Thanks.

The only character I liked was Freddie, Violet's grandmother who died before the events of the book! She was the only wise and normal character in the entire book!

Right in the middle of the devil/monster storyline, the author decides to create old, family drama and mystery. Huh? Why? How is this relevant to the rest of the plot? While I was interested in it, I didn't understand the need for it.

Then there was the ending. I don't even know what to say. This story just wasn't for me, but I know so many other people who loved it! I think I am the odd ball out with this one.

2.5 stars rounded up to 3.


  1. So sorry you didn't like this one. I loved the writing style. I felt like the descriptions and rhetoric were beautiful. But that happens with books!!! Hope you enjoy your next read more.

    YA Sisterhood

  2. Bummer. I did hear a lot of buzz over this story, but I think this is the first review that I've read. And I can honestly say I won't be picking it up based on your review. The heroine does sound rather annoying for being the heroine. And this River guy, really? Yeah, definitely doesn't sound like my kind of read!

    Nice honest review though. Hope you enjoy your next read better than this one!


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