Devil in Ohio by Daria Polatin

Devil in Ohio

A strange, damaged girl lives with a family after escaping a cult in this debut YA suspense/thriller that was inspired by true events.When fifteen-year-old Jules Mathis comes home from school to find a strange girl, her mother explains that Mae is one of her patients at the hospital and will be staying with their family for a few days. But shortly after, Mae is wearing Jul...

Title:Devil in Ohio
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Edition Language:English

Devil in Ohio Reviews

  • Michelle

    I loved reading this book! Devil in Ohio follows the story of a teenage girl Mae, who escapes from a satanic cult. Mae moves in with her psychiatrist and family, where Jules, our other main character, takes her under her wing at home and school. But Jules starts to get weirded out by strange things that keep happening to her and her family now that Mae's around. And Mae keeps stepping into Jules social world, where it almost seems like she's trying to edge Jules out. The situation forces Jules t

    I loved reading this book! Devil in Ohio follows the story of a teenage girl Mae, who escapes from a satanic cult. Mae moves in with her psychiatrist and family, where Jules, our other main character, takes her under her wing at home and school. But Jules starts to get weirded out by strange things that keep happening to her and her family now that Mae's around. And Mae keeps stepping into Jules social world, where it almost seems like she's trying to edge Jules out. The situation forces Jules to take matters into her own hands... The mystery of Mae and where she came from kept me speeding through the novel. I also really loved the main character Jules, and how honestly she shared her feelings, even if they weren't always flattering. I'd recommend this book for age 13 and up, as the subject matter is a little dark. Overall a fun, sometimes scary, addictive read!

  • Theresa

    I wanted to give this book to my friend's teenage daughter for Halloween, as always I read them before I pass them along, right from the beginning it grabbed my attention & kept me reading. It's a fast paced story, which I enjoyed up until the last chapters, maybe it's the "Mom" in me, but I couldn't imagine putting my teenage daughter in danger the way this Mom did, even if all odds were against me. I also, thought the last few chapters, kinda wrapped-up the loose ends a little too quickly.

    I wanted to give this book to my friend's teenage daughter for Halloween, as always I read them before I pass them along, right from the beginning it grabbed my attention & kept me reading. It's a fast paced story, which I enjoyed up until the last chapters, maybe it's the "Mom" in me, but I couldn't imagine putting my teenage daughter in danger the way this Mom did, even if all odds were against me. I also, thought the last few chapters, kinda wrapped-up the loose ends a little too quickly. This girl, the family "saved" had a whole lot of issues, I hope the author plans a "Part 2", because the way it was ended, left a lot of questions! Overall, though a very good, book!

  • Joe

    I received an ARC from Netgalley for an unbiased review.

    Jules' mother, Suzanne, is a doctor who has become extremely close with her last patient. Mae has a scar of a pentagram on her back and Suzanne as well as the other doctors are baffled about why this happened. meanwhile Jules is starting high school and is trying to get a spot on the school paper as a photographer. When Suzanne tells Jules and her two sisters Dani and Helen that Mae is going to stay with them, things around them start getti

    I received an ARC from Netgalley for an unbiased review.

    Jules' mother, Suzanne, is a doctor who has become extremely close with her last patient. Mae has a scar of a pentagram on her back and Suzanne as well as the other doctors are baffled about why this happened. meanwhile Jules is starting high school and is trying to get a spot on the school paper as a photographer. When Suzanne tells Jules and her two sisters Dani and Helen that Mae is going to stay with them, things around them start getting weird.

    What I really liked about this book are the following:

    great story (the author mentioned it was based on true events)

    well rounded characters (always great to have strong female characters in books)

    no love triangle or instalove ( I could have given this book 5 stars just for that alone)

    What I did not like about the book:

    the only thing I did not like about the book was that the ending was a bit of a let down. The book does not set itself up for a sequel so it has the HFN/HEA feeling

    Everything being said and done I can easily give this book 4.5/5

  • Megan

    I really loved reading this book. It appeals to a wide range of readers, because it is more interesting and has more depth than a lot of young adult novels out there. I really like the characterization of the main character, Jules. There are so many fun details about her love of photography, her hatred of mushrooms, and her perspective on the world. I think the way the teens are written is very smart, as they all have unique voices. They’re not innocent beings who are unaware of the realities of

    I really loved reading this book. It appeals to a wide range of readers, because it is more interesting and has more depth than a lot of young adult novels out there. I really like the characterization of the main character, Jules. There are so many fun details about her love of photography, her hatred of mushrooms, and her perspective on the world. I think the way the teens are written is very smart, as they all have unique voices. They’re not innocent beings who are unaware of the realities of the world. They’re witty and remind me of how my friends and I interacted in high school. The banter between Isaac and Jules is so natural and entertaining.

    The chapters of Devil in Ohio are short, so it flows really well. You can always fit in one more chapter before bed! The mixture of first person narration from Jules, third person with her mom Suzanne, and interviews between Mae and Suzanne keeps you engaged. It’s a page turner because of the mystery at its center, but also because of the writing style. The imagery is so vibrant. The line “Purple and blue swirls of blood circled just under her skin's surface like weather patterns of hurt" was one of my favorites!

    I highly recommend this book because it’s fun, spooky, and teaches a great lesson about appreciating the life you have.

  • Stacee

    This was rather underwhelming.

    I liked Jules and her family well enough. At the beginning they had a great, supportive dynamic. There were several secondary characters, yet no one really stood out.

    Plot wise, it had a lot of promise. It started out intriguing and it was a quick read. Sadly, everything quickly turned to drama drama and more drama and coupled with Jules’s mom’s obsession with Mae’s well being, it got rather boring and felt repetitive. Plus the ending felt rushed and unresolved.

    Over

    This was rather underwhelming.

    I liked Jules and her family well enough. At the beginning they had a great, supportive dynamic. There were several secondary characters, yet no one really stood out.

    Plot wise, it had a lot of promise. It started out intriguing and it was a quick read. Sadly, everything quickly turned to drama drama and more drama and coupled with Jules’s mom’s obsession with Mae’s well being, it got rather boring and felt repetitive. Plus the ending felt rushed and unresolved.

    Overall, there were some creepy things, but the story lacked the tension a subject like this requires.

    **Huge thanks to Feiwel & Friends for providing the arc free of charge**

  • Eric Zuckerman

    This book hooked me from the opening chapter and I flew through it. The hidden world of devil worshippers it exposes is fascinating, but what is even more impressive is how spectacularly it captures adolescence. The lead character, Jules, makes some decisions which made me cringe, but mostly because I know I might have done the same in my youth. Daria Polatin finds a way to keep the reader on Jules' side even while we're yelling at her to stop being so selfish. But it's that youthful selfishness

    This book hooked me from the opening chapter and I flew through it. The hidden world of devil worshippers it exposes is fascinating, but what is even more impressive is how spectacularly it captures adolescence. The lead character, Jules, makes some decisions which made me cringe, but mostly because I know I might have done the same in my youth. Daria Polatin finds a way to keep the reader on Jules' side even while we're yelling at her to stop being so selfish. But it's that youthful selfishness that rings so true. And while this book is very much about female experiences (with three vivid and captivating female characters at the center), it's truths about the choices we make growing up in our quest to be popular are universal. I loved this book and recommend it not only to young women, who are certainly the target audience, but to anyone who has ever struggled with trying to be popular while remaining true to oneself. Which is to say, I recommend it to everyone.

  • Alexander

    Fast-paced, funny, heartfelt and suspenseful! Immediately, I felt for Jules. Her family dynamic was relatable and once Mae comes into her life and starts wearing Jules' clothes and falling for her crush, I was locked in.

    Who is Mae? That was the driving force of the novel and it kept the pages turning. Devil worshipping? Cults? I had to find out! (I ended up staying up past my bedtime to keep reading.)

    The level of detail was incredible (the rituals and cult) and the fact that it was based on a t

    Fast-paced, funny, heartfelt and suspenseful! Immediately, I felt for Jules. Her family dynamic was relatable and once Mae comes into her life and starts wearing Jules' clothes and falling for her crush, I was locked in.

    Who is Mae? That was the driving force of the novel and it kept the pages turning. Devil worshipping? Cults? I had to find out! (I ended up staying up past my bedtime to keep reading.)

    The level of detail was incredible (the rituals and cult) and the fact that it was based on a true story gives me goosebumps writing while I’m writing this!

    Suzanne, Jules’ mother, drives the plot so well. And the more Suzanne reveals about Mae's history, the more danger she puts her own family in...

    A killer debut novel that has gotten me so excited to read the author’s next work!

  • Abdi Nazemian

    DEVIL IN OHIO will grip you with its frightening twists and turns, but it is its tenderness that will stay with you. Daria Polatin brings humor and heart to a story that shines some much-needed light on the darkness of our world. Read this book!

  • Amy's Book Reviews

    3.5 STARS

    Jules is used to flying under the radar in her family and in school. Then her psychiatrist mother Suzanne brings home Mae, a girl who escaped a satanic cult. Soon Jules and Mae popular, but danger lurks around the corner. Has Mae been found by the cult? Or is she not as innocent as she seems.

    Add Suzanne to the list of unintentionally horrible mom’s in YA lit. Psychiatrists aren’t allowed to take patients home. Egad! The longer Mae stays, the deeper Suzanne seems to be pulled into an obs

    3.5 STARS

    Jules is used to flying under the radar in her family and in school. Then her psychiatrist mother Suzanne brings home Mae, a girl who escaped a satanic cult. Soon Jules and Mae popular, but danger lurks around the corner. Has Mae been found by the cult? Or is she not as innocent as she seems.

    Add Suzanne to the list of unintentionally horrible mom’s in YA lit. Psychiatrists aren’t allowed to take patients home. Egad! The longer Mae stays, the deeper Suzanne seems to be pulled into an obsession with the girl, neglecting her marriage, kids and job. Hello, unresolved issues. Suzanne, abused as a child, clearly hasn’t done enough work on herself, nor does she understand the concept of countertransference. The plot lost me when Suzanne insisted Jules drive her to the murderous cult to find Mae, with no regard to her own daughter’s safety. Worst. Mother. Ever.

    The ending seemed to open up more possibilities of danger, so I’m not certain whether there will be a sequel and if not, why such an ending.

    Why the bump up to 4 stars? I truly loved the reading experience of DEVIL IN OHIO. I liked Jules and had a lot of empathy for her struggles. Daria Polatin structured the story that most chapters were in Jules’s voice, with some third person POV chapters about Suzanne and her work with Mae. I wish the chapters had been labeled on in a less random order. One minute I’m reading Jules, the next chapter I’m not sure right away.

    THE DEVIL IN OHIO is more fun than an example of literary prowess, which is okay with me.

  • Mira Gibson

    I am not a "YA" reader, but this particular book was recommended to me since I love and eat up mystery novels. First off, all I can say is I loved "living" in this world and I wish the book hadn't ended, it was that good. As far as I'm concerned it surpassed whatever "Young Adult" as a 'genre' is supposed to mean, because I'm an avid mystery reader and Devil in Ohio quenched that thirst. What I'm about to say might at first blush sound like a criticism (harsh perhaps) but that's not the case...I

    I am not a "YA" reader, but this particular book was recommended to me since I love and eat up mystery novels. First off, all I can say is I loved "living" in this world and I wish the book hadn't ended, it was that good. As far as I'm concerned it surpassed whatever "Young Adult" as a 'genre' is supposed to mean, because I'm an avid mystery reader and Devil in Ohio quenched that thirst. What I'm about to say might at first blush sound like a criticism (harsh perhaps) but that's not the case...I was sucked in--phenomenally sucked in to this story!--and had to keep flipping the pages, because the story was so intriguing that I needed to know what happened to Mae. This YA novel is told from Jules' perspective--a teenaged, self proclaimed "average" girl. I love that about this novel. But Jules isn't the intrigue, Mae is. Mae is a cult survivor who is "taken in" by her psychiatrist, the teenaged daughter of which--Jules--is tasked with "helping her fit in". Devil in Ohio is a success of suspense and intrigue that transcends genre--again, I'm no "YA" fan, I just love a good page turner with mystery!--because the story is told through Jules' teenaged eyes, a story that centers on the enigmatic Mae, a cult survivor, but is shared so thinly, so slightly, because it is a teenaged girl--an average girl--who tells the tale. What I love most about how Polatin tells this--brace yourself, it's a true story!--tale, is that she keeps the narrative grounded in the teenaged girl's perspective. Honestly, as a reader and ***ahem, LOVER of mysteries***I was dying to read a chapter from Mae's perspective. Show me the darkness of the cult, show me the perversions! But Polatin was perhaps braver and smarter than that and refused to "sensationalize" the "cult culture". Instead, she dropped harrowing glimpses of this world that Mae--thank God!--escaped, and let the reader draw their own conclusions. Oh, the conclusions I drew! At the end of the day, this was a book that had an effect on me, the kind of book that left me thinking--stewing in fact--once the final page had been turned. I personally feel that this is the mark of a great book. I loved "living" in this world with the characters and I was sad when it ended. I highly recommend anyone read it, regardless of their preferred genre--hell, I love me a mystery and never thought twice about "YA" but this book blew my preconceived notions out of the water!--It's a fast and fun read. Go for it! Polatin delivers in a way few do!

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