Review: The Devourers – Indra Das

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Professor Alok encounters a stranger who claims to be half-werewolf. Soon enough, he’s entwined in the stranger’s stories, agreeing to transcribe the man’s papers that tell more tantalizing stories.


Why this book?: Heard an amazing review on this, and it was still up on NetGalley. That being said…

I would like to thank the people at Del Rey for allowing me to have an ARC of this book via NetGalley.

What needs to be said: Do not read this book if you are sensitive to rape or gore.

The Devourers, written by Indra Das, was a really interesting read. Throughout my reading of this novel, that was all I could think. “This book is really interesting.” And it did, it just kept getting more and more interesting! The setting, while minimally described, was set in front of you in amazing detail. All I could picture was the scenery and settings that were described, as well as the people and concepts.

Not much had to be said of the world, considering this is more of a low fantasy. But I was still quite confused with what ‘the devourers’ were meant to be. Mr. Das kept everything vague when it came to the actual creatures/werewolves/supernatural beings. Some things contradicted themselves, and I never understood the character’s reasoning.

Beautiful setting and writing…but not for long

But I was so entranced with this book that I really didn’t notice how much was withheld, until I got into the thick of it.

Reading past . . . say, 45% of the book, things catch up to you. By then, it’s not repetitive–just boring. I was waiting for something to happen, for Fenrir to come out of nowhere, for another tribe to show up. But nothing happened. The characters, Cyrah and Gevaudan continued to argue about things, or talk about the person they were pursuing. Sure, some of the things that happened were interesting, but they seemed unnecessary to the plot.

But that was the one plot that was going on.

The second plot, the one you are introduced to in the beginning, is fairly interesting in the beginning as well. But, same as Cyrah’s and Gevaudan’s story, it gets boring near the end as well.

Strange obsessions are just strange

Alok is a history professor, who meets a stranger during some kind of festival. The stranger tells him stories–and then hires him to transcribe some documents that he is in possession of, which just so happen to be Cyrah’s and Gevaudan’s story-line. So, you’re technically reading that story-line along with Alok.

Except Alok’s perceived relationship with the stranger is just so weird, and it’s like Alok is obsessed with this stranger and this world he supposedly comes from.

Final Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall?

The idea behind this book was beautiful and amazing. The setting, the culture, and folklore is just so interesting I’m thinking about researching Indian culture on my own, just to know more about the little that was told in this story. But the way the story is told, and how it’s lengthened out, bothers me. I just couldn’t get into it past the 50% mark, and had trouble finishing it at all.

Would I Recommend?

The story was beautiful, as well as the writing and setting. But the characters and plot were dragged out so much, I got bored. You can try it if you are interested; While I am thankful I got to read this book, maybe it just wasn’t my thing.


The DevourersAdditional Information:

Published: July 12th, 2016

Publisher: Del Rey

Page Count: 306

Genre: Fantasy/Horror/Indian Culture

Synopsis: via Goodreads

On a cool evening in Kolkata, India, beneath a full moon, as the whirling rhythms of traveling musicians fill the night, college professor Alok encounters a mysterious stranger with a bizarre confession and an extraordinary story. Tantalized by the man’s unfinished tale, Alok will do anything to hear its completion. So Alok agrees, at the stranger’s behest, to transcribe a collection of battered notebooks, weathered parchments, and once-living skins.

From these documents spills the chronicle of a race of people at once more than human yet kin to beasts, ruled by instincts and desires blood-deep and ages-old. The tale features a rough wanderer in seventeenth-century Mughal India who finds himself irrevocably drawn to a defiant woman—and destined to be torn asunder by two clashing worlds. With every passing chapter of beauty and brutality, Alok’s interest in the stranger grows and evolves into something darker and more urgent.

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