Some towns get caramel apples. Others get a special chocolate treat as their claim to fame. We get fried pumpkin leaves.
About This Book
Series: Prosper Redding [Book #1]
Length: 367 pages
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Supernatural
Release Date: September 5, 2017
Prosper Redding is the only unexceptional member of his very successful family, that is, until he discovers a demon living inside him. Turns out, Prosper’s great-great-great-great-great-something grandfather made, and then broke – a contract with a malefactor, a demon who exchanges fortune for eternal servitude. Now Alastor, the malefactor, has reawakened and is intent on destroying the Redding fortune, unless they can kill him in the body he inhabits, which, oh, wait, that’s Prosper, and why is his grandmother coming at him with a silver blade.
In danger from both the demon trying to take over his soul and the family that would rather protect their fortune than their own kin, Prosper narrowly escapes with the help of his long lost Uncle Barnabas and Barnabas’s daughter, Nell, a witch in training. According to Barnabas and Nell, they have only days to break the family curse and find a way to banish Alastor back to the demon realm. Until then, Prosper has to deal with Alastor’s vengeful mutterings inside his head (not to mention his nasty habit of snacking on spiders). And, every night, Alastor’s control over his body grows stronger...
As the deadline to the curse draws nearer, Prosper and Nell realize there’s more at stake than just the Redding family fortune… that there might be something else out there, something worse than Alastor, that could destroy the balance between the human and demon realms and change the world as they know it forever.
Star Rating: ★★★★★ • 5 / 5 stars
Uncle Barnabas glanced up at the ceiling, scratching his head. “We are, uh, entertaining a few options for solving your predicament at the moment.”
“You don’t have a clue, do you?” I asked flatly.
This book was a ton of fun. I really enjoyed it. Which is why I gave it the semi-rare, five star rating.
I honestly liked just about everything about it. The characters were great, the setting was somewhat richly described, the plot was awesome, and the protagonist’s narrative voice was the bomb. It would be most appropriate as a pre-Halloween, October read, but it honestly kinda works anytime. Though, I did still read it during the fall, so that may be part of the reason I was still in the mood.
I had no idea who Louis XIV was, but someone seriously needed to have a talk with him about his sick obsession with gold naked-baby-angel statues.
To start off this review proper, let’s talk about the characters first. I loved Prosper Redding, and just how much sarcasm he had inside of him. Because it’s not just a demon in the trying to get out (more on that in a bit), oh no. Prosper is one of those characters that is unable to keep the sass on the down-low, and he speaks his mind, regardless of the consequences. Kind of like a diet-Harry Dresden, or Percy Jackson (though he’s actually a little more sassy than the latter, in my opinion). And don’t worry, Prosper has character growth as well.
Alastor, Fiend Prince With a Really Long Title, was a lot of fun too. I thoroughly enjoyed his arrogance and unbearable-ness, and I loved his interactions with Prosper. These two have the best dialogue together in the entire book. I also liked how active both Al and Prosper were with their differing agendas, and how neither one was just a static, reactive character. Because Alastor also has some character development going on.
“Chill,” she said. “Of all base passions, fear is the most accursed.”
I rolled my eyes. “Sorry I don’t speak Fortune Cookie.”
I also really enjoyed Nell Bishop, and her dynamic with Prosper. The two played off one another really well, with Nell being a somewhat more serious “straight-man” type of character, but she always brought her own sass to the table when she needed to.
Uncle Barnabas was… interesting. I can’t really say too much without giving away a little of the plot, but he played his role well. And, last but not least, I also liked Prosper’s twin sister Prue, though she didn’t appear in the novel as many times as I would have liked. I also would have liked her and Prosper to have had more interactions as well, to show more of their bond, but it wasn’t too much of a gripe for me or anything.
And yeah, this is kind of slightly mean, but I loved how much Prosper dunked on his grandmother. Nevermind, she was a total a-hole, so she completely deserved it, actually. Just… the descriptions and general stuff he said about her was hilarious.
It wasn’t that Prue and I hated our grandmother. It was just that we thought she might be the Devil in a dress suit.
That was it. I whirled around with only one goal: to run back up that hill, through the creepy forest, and straight out of Redhood. If she was giving us sweets and talking in that strange, drippy voice, it could only be for one reason. She was going to poison me.
Prosper’s thoughts on the rest of his horrible family are also very amusing.
Charlotte, the oldest of us, the one responsible for throwing me off a second-floor balcony to see if I could fly, only smiled and wrapped an arm around my shoulder.
as well as
Oh crap, I thought, trying to take a step back. My family really is a cult. That guy with the website had been right.
The pacing in the story was perfect too. For me at least. Fast-paced is the best! I like it when the plot and stuff don’t really slow down. And it wasn’t too fast; the characters still had time to “breathe” and react properly to stuff, so that was also great.
I also really liked the atmosphere of the novel. The vivid, beautiful descriptions of October environments was perfect. I almost wanted to try some Silence Cakes (the fried leaves, covered in syrup and sugar) myself. Almost.
Loved the villains of the book, as well. The climax in particular was very exciting, and it made me want to start the sequel immediately. And I did. So, expect a review for The Last Life of Prince Alastor, in the next week.
Have you read The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding? What did you think of it? Thanks for reading, and return next time for more bookish things!