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The White Devil by Justin Evans
Present day England, seventeen year old American Andrew Taylor is a transfer student at Harrow, an elite all-boy boarding school. The schoolcampus consists of several ancient houses in a street and Andrew's house is called The Lot, which is said to be haunted. Their housemaster is Piers Fawkes, a poet who has written this year's school play about Lord Byron, a former Harrow student. It so happens that Andrew looks a lot like Byron and has acting experience, so he is asked to play the lead role. Before the book turns into a regular young adult boarding school story, one of his new friends is found dead and Andrew has seen a ghost committing the murder. He doesn't want to tell the authorities, but after more ghostly encounters finally confides in Piers Fawkes, librarian Dr. Kahn and love interest Persephone Vine. Together they will find out who the ghost is and discover a way to get rid of it.

I was very sceptical when I realized where the story would be going. I also didn't care for all the references to homosexuality. Thankfully, Persephone was written into the story, so Andrew can remain straight. Halfway through the book captured my interest and I became engrossed in the story. I haven't read many ghost stories, but I think this one certainly was exceptionally well done.

I liked the way how Andrew compares England to the USA. The author himself is an American and attended Harrow School for one year, so he knows how Andrew would look upon the English customs and idiom. However, I noticed a tiny error: an Englishman wouldn't have a bottle of Advil in his room.

Though the book isn't meant to be humorous, I had a LOL-moment here:
Quote:Father Peter’s air became more formal. “You are petitioners with me in the blessing of this house,” he explained. “Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God the Father Almighty?”
Fawkes and Dr. Kahn exchanged glances.
“I’m a Jew,” said Dr. Kahn. “So no.”
“I’m an atheist,” Fawkes winced. “I thought you were going to . . .”

My verdict: an 8 out of 10


Messages In This Thread
The White Devil by Justin Evans - by Charybdis - 10-11-2011, 07:07 AM

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