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Summary

‘When the rains came they found the girl's face. Just her face. At least that was how it appeared...’.

Sheriff John Gaines is called down to the riverside when the body of a teenage girl is found. It is that of Nancy Denton - a girl missing for over two decades. Now she's been found her mother can finally put her memory to rest, but Nancy's body bears horrific mutilations that suggest she was subjected to a terrifying voodoo ritual. As Gaines digs ever deeper into the dark secrets of the town he is forced to confront his own demons…

©2013 Roger Jon Ellory (P)2013 W F Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"Classic noir… Ellory is beginning to sound like the master [James Ellroy]. I can think of no higher praise." ( Daily Mail on A Dark and Broken Heart)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Becky
  • United Kingdom
  • 08-04-16

Worth the time invested.

A very slow start.
I almost gave up several times as I had not expected this novel to dwell on the Vietnamese war so much.
However I was rewarded in the end!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Took a while, but then the magic happened

It took time to ‘get into’ this book, but all of a sudden I was hooked and enthralled. The only slight criticism I would have is the somewhat lengthy discourse on the Vietnam War, which was unexpected. As a child of the 60s I lived through the era wit my peers, and appreciate the sentiment, but nevertheless I still thought it went on a bit...

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Entertaining and dark

This was a 2 for 1 offer book and I thought I would take the plunge. The narration is absolutely fantastic. The characters and accents. It's a little long winded in places and I found myself wanting it to move quicker. But it's a very enjoyable thriller with some nice twists. Worth a download.

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great read

Beautifully written,well paced all you could wish for from a book by R J Ellory.

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  • s
  • LONDON, United Kingdom
  • 17-08-13

I'm affraid I gave up half the way.

Just really couldn't make heads or tails of this story. Kept on waiting for the story to evolve but nothing. Myabe I'm a bit impatient so gave up and bought another book instead.

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If you like R.J Ellory... you'll still hate this!

Synopsis...

Small town cop tries to "solve" crime by thinking about his time in Vietnam instead of asking questions and gathering evidence.

At least one glaring plot inconsistency and dozens of examples of the authorities jumping through hoops to avoid doing the obvious tasks which would probably have wrapped the case up within a few chapters.

Good narration though.

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The Stress of War

Although the main story centred around the discovery of a corpse and trying to find out who killed her; there was also a focus on how war damages soldiers. The sheriff was suffering terribly from Vietnam and a suspect was traumatised in WWII. As with most of R J Ellory's books, there is a lot of descriptive prose and as such you have to concentrate when listening and not multi-task, like I tend to do! I did find I had to go back a few chapters now and then as I had missed salient points; but it's worth it as it really enriches the story.

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  • Annie
  • Montignac sur Charente, France
  • 02-04-16

One of Ellory's best

What did you like most about The Devil and the River?

I loved the character of John Gaines; a complicated and very moral person haunted by his experiences in Vietnam

Who was your favorite character and why?

John Gaines. He came across as a kind, determined and intelligent sheriff, with great affection for his elderly mother and the people around him

What does Eric Meyers and Laurence Bouvard bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Eric Meyers read beautifully and I loved the different voices he used. I also liked the use of a woman's voice for the story of Nancy and her friends.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me smile at times and it made me think.

Any additional comments?

An excellent story, well read.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Janie
  • 21-12-13

One of the best writers ever.........!!

Would you listen to The Devil and the River again? Why?

I never thought I would say this, but, yes! Emphatically, yes! It took a while to get me 'hooked' this time. I'm an Aussie and the southern USA slow speech, and slow thinking got in my way to start but Ellory soon hooked me with his superb prose and I continued listening just to take pleasure alone in this; soon I was engrossed in this unusual murder mystery which was really a saga about a small town and a wealthy southern family with a secret that they never wanted to be known. The story meandered like the great Missisippi itself backwards and forwards allover the place and every time revealing another piece of the puzzle our protagonist was attempting to unveil. He had a story too, and as the mystery unfolded so did Deputy Sherrif Gaines story too. The book has many layers, the murder plot, and the intricacies of the lives this murder touched. I devoured this reading quickly and will read again just to savour once more the excellent prose of the author, RJ Ellory, who is fast becoming my favourite.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The protagonist, Sherrif Gaines. A complex character in his own right; looking for direction and meaning in his life and finding it, as the book unfolds.

What about Eric Meyers and Laurence Bouvard ’s performance did you like?

I must admit, that I was not aware there were two performers. For me it was seamless and the voices excellent, for the most part.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I did have an extreme reaction to this book in as much as I was unsure at first whether I was going to enjoy it mainly because of the USA deep south subject matter and just as I was contemplating switching it off, it started to hook me and boy did it ever; I was completely drawn into the story and did not want to put the book down - which I only did once, to sleep.

Any additional comments?

If you love really good writing, get it!