Do you ever remember feeling like pressures of life were just too much? Have you ever had to sacrifice weeks, months, or years of your life because of circumstances that were completely out of your control? All you ever wanted to do was get away from everything and freely be yourself for just one day. This is the what life is like for 18-year-old Cadie, the main character and narrator of this dark and sexy road-trip drama.
After Cadie’s mother died, she has been forced into a role no high schooler would ever ask for: being a babysitter/substitute mother for her 3-year-old brother, and acting as housekeeper, cook, and homemaker for her family while her father struggles to cope.
To put it simply, homegirl needs a break.
Fortunately, Matt and Noah, two exceptionally hot cousins who are road-tripping through Florida, meet Cadie at a campground party. When they invite her and a friend to hang out with them for a few days, Cadie jumps at the chance for a little teenage rebellion. Giving herself a day or two to break free won’t be so bad… right? Remember kids: running off on an adventure with two guys you don’t know is very rarely a good idea.
How was it?
The Devil You Know combines a lot of great elements. There’s a little romance, a little mystery, a dash of coming-of-age, and an underlying current of something… off. Cousins Noah and Matt may seem great at first glance. But with back stories that include troubled families and violent pasts, it’s no surprise when this supposed liberating adventure turns into something much darker.
Despite my previous advice, I’d totes want to run off with two guys like Noah and Matt too. The romance angle in this novel is dark, sexy, and made me wish I’d be fortunate enough to meet two ruggedly handsome guys to sneak off with (BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN WE SHOULD ALL GO GALLIVANTING AROUND WITH HOT, MYSTERIOUS BOYS).
The story is told from Cadie’s point of view, and the poor girl just wants to be adventurous. You can feel her ache to be a normal teenager, even just for a little while. We watch her go through the normal paces anyone in her position would go through. She justifies her actions with the “I deserve this for myself!” mentality, but rationally thinks, “What am I doing… this isn’t me!” Despite the fact that few people would probably do what Cadie did, readers can certainly sympathize with her understandable emotional roller coaster throughout the trip.
The Devil You Know is an engrossing read that sucks you in right from the start. This is the first book I’ve read by Trish Doller, and I really liked her writing. The Devil You Know is quickly and evenly paced, and Doller keeps the momentum flowing throughout. The language is not terribly complex so it’s easy to read without sacrificing a good story, which makes it a great option for reluctant readers.