Review of Vicious Circle by Mike Carey
I recommend reading The Devil You Know first. There’s lots of background information, and the story continues from there, so it’ll help you understand what’s going on with Felix Castor. I’ll admit the first one is good, but long winded. It’s worth a read though, and a hearty introduction to our main protagonist.
Be advised, the summary below contains spoilers.
Castor has reluctantly returned to exorcism after the case of the Bonnington Archive ghost convinced him that he really can do some good with his abilities (‘good’, of course, being a relative term when dealing with the undead). But his friend, Rafi, is still possessed; the succubus, Ajulutsikael (Juliet to her friends), still technically has a contract on him; and he’s still–let’s not beat around the bush–dirt poor. Doing some consulting for the local constabulary helps pay the bills, but Castor needs a big, private job to really fill the hole in his overdraft. That’s what he needs. What he gets, good fortune and Castor not being on speaking terms, is a seemingly insignificant ‘missing ghost’ case that inexorably drags himself and his loved ones into the middle of a horrific plot to raise one of Hell’s fiercest demons. When Satanists, sacrifice farms, stolen spirits and possessed churches all appear on the same police report, the name of Felix Castor can’t be too far behind. (From Amazon).
I found this book to be much better than the first one. There was twice as much action, and Felix has developed a much more likable personality. His wit is sharper and although I found his retorts and comebacks funny, they were twice as fun to read in this book.
The storyline was much better, and more exciting. More twists and turns were added to make the plot more interesting. I liked how the main plot branched out into several mini story arcs, but they all came to an end and were all tied up nicely. It wasn’t confusing and it was clearly written for the reader to understand without any problems.
Juliet happened to be the big surprise for me in this book, and I couldn’t help but like her despite the contract she has to adhere to. She turned out to be the secondary character that really grew on me. I liked her. She has an interesting relationship with Felix. They need to help each other yet she has to keep to her contract. There’s conflict but it seems more likely that Juliet will be Felix’ sidekick – at least I hope so because they do seem to make a great pair when working together. (Even though it looks like Juliet does the easy work and Felix does the dirty harmful parts).
The action was most of the main focus in this book. Plenty of fighting, explosions, Felix running from the law and fighting numerous adversaries, it’s all a lot of good fun reading. It annoyed me immensely when the police thought Felix was behind a crime and was hindering his investigation. You could feel his frustration and anger, but you cheered when he managed to get out of the situation in time.
I am definitely going to continue reading this series. I’m hoping it all goes well with Felix Castor, as bad luck always seems to follow him wherever he goes! Those who are new to the series, I know the first one isn’t as good, but stick with it, because this one makes it well worth the read. All the action starts here in this book and the ending will make you want to go and find out what happens next.
I give it a 9 out of 10.