Fifteen-year-old Reggie loves all things scary. When she finds a mysterious journal about wicked creatures that inhabit the bodies of children on Sorry Night, the eve of the winter solstice, she just considers it fun bedtime reading. The journal says that once inside a human, these creatures, the Vours, assume the victim's personality, banishing their soul to a dark netherworld called a "fearscape." Wonderfully frightening, but Reggie assumes they are just the musings of an anonymous lunatic....until one extraordinary night, when she learns that Vours are indeed real, and that she must fight them to save the people she loves.
With help from her mentor Eben, a bookstore owner, and her best friend Aaron, Reggie traces the owner of the journal to an abandoned house, where she comes face-to-face with a Vour and learns to devour her fear before it devours her.
With suspense, surprises, and its share of gore, The Devouring will please both thriller and horror fans.
Comparable to books by R. L. Stine and Stephen King, The Devouring will keep readers on the edge of their seats. Reggie is a horror fanatic. When she finds a journal in a box of used books at the bookstore where she works, she "borrows" it. It tells of the Vours, black smokelike beings that possess humans who can't conquer their fear on Sorry Night (the eve of the winter solstice). Reggie and her friend Aaron attempt to make the Vours materialize but instead they possess her little brother. In a fight to the death, Reggie joins the battle of humanity against the Vours. This story contains classic elements of the genre: a horrific monster, fusion (where two different entities are fused into one), and the process of discovery. The book has some graphic content, blood, and gore, which only add to the chills. A must-have for horror fans.
—School Library Journal
"When the dark creeps in and eats the light, / Bury your fears on Sorry Night," begins this creepy tale that reads like A Nightmare on Elm Street with a dollop of demonic possession. Reggie Halloway, a mousy girl and avid horror fan, discovers a strange journal while working at an occult bookstore. Upon investigation, she learns about the Vours, horrific demons who feed on fear and take over the body, morphing its host into a cold, cruel creature. When, as a prank, Reggie and her friend Aaron attempt to summon a Vour, things go horribly awry and a Vour takes over the body of her little brother, Henry. Reggie then must battle the Vours to try to get her brother's soul back into his body. In this introductory volume, cinematic in its scope, Holt borrows conventions from many horror films, including a Stygian carnival complete with killer clowns and dreams in which injuries can manifest themselves in the real world. A scary yarn spun at breakneck speed, perfect for those chilly winter nights.
Simon Holt's writing career began with a horror fanzine in high school, the publishing of which overheated the school's photocopier. Undaunted by detention, he's continued to pursue writing ever since. Holt supported himself as a hotel night clerk and a handbag salesman before becoming a full-time novelist. A comic book collector and amateur musician, he makes his home in Chicago.