“A nun commits suicide in front of thousands in Spain. In Australia, Siobhan Russo recognises that nun as her mother, Denise Russo, who disappeared six years ago.
In search of answers, Siobhan travels to the isolated convent where her mother once lived. Here she discovers Denise’s final confession, a book that details a heinous betrayal that left her crippled and mute, and Denise’s subsequent deal with the Devil to take revenge. In the desperate bargain Denise made with the Prince of Darkness, she wagered Siobhan’s soul.
As Siobhan discovers the fate of her soul, she learns that hidden within the pages of her mother’s confession is part of The Devil’s Prayer, an ancient text with the power to unleash apocalyptic horrors.
And now her mother’s enemies know Siobhan has it.
Can Siobhan escape an order of extremist monks determined to get the Prayer back? Can she save the world from its own destruction?”
After reading this book, I can safely proclaim that I am officially out of my reading slump! I couldn’t have asked for a better book to kick-start the scorching Chennai summer. When I first received an email from the author Luke Gracias, I was thrilled for two reasons; one, because I had been recommended to him by Rishi Vohra and two, the blurb of “The Devil’s Prayer” seemed to be on the lines of one of my favorite genres – historical fiction and the promise of a good treasure hunt. But I was pleasantly surprised when the plot that set the entire book going was actually a revenge saga, the wheels of which are set off due to acts of greed and the violence that follows such acts.
The book started off like a Dan Brown novel. A nun is chased by a bunch of monks for reasons unknown to the readers, only to jump to her death! What follows is a page turning cat and mouse game between a young girl, Siobhan in search of her mother’s past filled with secrets she took to her grave and a brotherhood of monks who will stop at nothing to make sure she fails.
As the pages unfold, the pace of the book sets your pulse racing. The reader is drawn into the perfect world of news room anchor Denise Russo, a world that is shattered due acts caused by greed and betrayal. One can’t help but sympathize with the protagonist when she makes a deal with the Devil in order to the save the life of her daughter Siobhan. Her world that seems to get normal after the birth of her second daughter Jess is shattered yet again when she discovers that she has been short-handed by the devil into giving birth to his progeny.
The transformation of Denise Russo from a gullible and trusting Denise, a loving mother and daughter to that of a cold and calculating murderess who will stop at nothing to protect her daughter followed by that of a nun who takes a vow of silence while quietly working against the devil has been beautifully drafted by the author.
The other character that stood out in my mind even after I had finished the book was Siobhan. Truly her mother’s daughter, she comes across as strong young woman ready to take on her mother fight and the anguish that could follow.
While this book is all about the coming of age of Siobhan, one is left wondering as to what happens when Siobhan understands the meaning of her mothers quest? Will she complete her mother mission? My guess is that the author has left this for a sequel!
I was engrossed in the book the moment I started reading it. In fact, the day that I started reading the book, I continued to read it until 1:30 AM in the morning simply because I could not put it down! The efforts that have been put in to research the various pieces of history that is truly impressive. Even more impressive was the fact that each of these little historical facts and events that took place across the globe have been tied beautifully to the plot. There was a time when all the information was getting a bit too much for me, but I believe that this was due to the fact that I was taking in too much at once. Had I relaxed my pace of reading I am pretty sure I would not have felt this way. Well, I am saving relaxed reading for another day 🙂 Also some of the content in the book is a bit explicit but it becomes a part of the plot and does not seem to have been written for the sake of thrills as is the case with many books that have such content.
I will finish my thoughts on this page turner by saying that there is a new promising author on the horizon!. Read “The Devil’s Prayer” if you are a fan of this genre or the occult or plan ole fiction! Read it in the silence of the night or at the crack of dawn (if possible) for a more fulfilling reading experience!!
About the Author:
Gracias is an environmental specialist who has worked as a consultant in the resources industry since 1994. He is also the CEO of Instinct India which has been involved with bringing Bollywood film and TV projects such as “Singh is Kinng” to be shot in Australia. The film went on to become the highest grossing Bollywood film of 2008. Based on the tourism generated over the film, Instinct India was nominated for the Premier’s Export awards in that year.
An avid photographer, Gracias travelled through Europe during the development of the film script for The Devil’s Prayer in 2014 and 2015, documenting a 13th century conspiracy between the Mongols and the Papal Inquisition on which this story is based. Photographs of the amazing locations of The Devil’s Prayer can be seen at www.devilsprayer.com..
The e-book of “The Devil’s Prayer” was received from the author Luke Gracias, in exchange for an honest review.