Review * The Diviners by Libba Bray

June 6, 2013 Reviews 10 ★★★★

Review * The Diviners by Libba BrayThe Diviners by Libba Bray
Narrated by January LaVoy
Series: The Diviners #1
Published by Little Brown BYR on September 18, 2012
Genres: Historical Fiction, Horror, Paranormal
Time: 18 Hours 14 Minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Add to: Goodreads
Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City--and she is pos-i-toot-ly thrilled. New York is the city of speakeasies, shopping, and movie palaces! Soon enough, Evie is running with glamorous Ziegfield girls and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is Evie has to live with her Uncle Will, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult--also known as "The Museum of the Creepy Crawlies."

When a rash of occult-based murders comes to light, Evie and her uncle are right in the thick of the investigation. And through it all, Evie has a secret: a mysterious power that could help catch the killer--if he doesn't catch her first.

What I Thought…

  • I’ve had The Diviners sitting on my shelf for a VERY long time. It intrigued me and I wanted to read it, but the fact that it is ginormous made me push it aside again and again. That was a mistake, I definitely should have read this sooner!
  • I listened to the audiobook, rather than read it, which was fantastic! The narrator, January LaVoy was absolutely fantastic. I will definitely be listening to more from her in the future. Her voices were so good. Hearing her sing the Naught John song seriously creeped me out!
  • I knew there would be a lot of mystery in The Diviners but I wasn’t quite prepared for the level of scariness. Maybe it was because I was listening to the audio but there were some parts that were so intense and creepy and put bad thoughts in my head before bed.
  • The Diviners is a wonderful blend of historical fiction, mystery and the supernatural.
  • I really enjoyed Bray’s description of life in the 1920’s. Similar to Beauty Queens, I could picture myself there, right along side the characters, living it up in 1920’s NYC.
  • I liked Evie, but her ditzyness got in the way sometimes. There were some moments where she was so smart and then she would turn around and act all ditzy again. Part of me feels like the ditzyness was just an act, I’m sure that girls in the 1920’s were feeling the pressure to “just look pretty” and not actually think for themselves.
  • I loved the secondary characters the most. Evie’s best friend Mabel is a lot more down to earth and does her best to keep Evie in check, which is quite difficult. Evie and Mabel meet Theta, a Ziegfeld Chorus girl, who also becomes involved in the mystery of Naughty John.
  • Evie lives with her Uncle Will in New York, who has graciously let her come visit after an incident back at home. Evie has him wrapped around her finger fairly well and can pretty much get her way whenever it suits her. Jericho works for Uncle Will and also becomes quite involved in the mystery. We get some of his back story, but I wish I had gotten more.
  • Memphis was a fascinating character. Several chapters are told from his point of view, about things that are seemingly non related. His family and upbringing are quite different from the others and I really enjoyed seeing how they all came together.
  • Sam becomes involved in everything after he pickpockets Evie upon her arrival in New York. He was my least favorite character, and one that I wouldn’t miss if his part became smaller as the series continues on.
  • There was almost no romance in The Diviners. There was a little bit in the middle with a couple of secondary characters, but nothing for the main character until almost the end. Despite my need for their to be romance in books, it really didn’t bother me that there was so little romance.
  • The Diviners jumps around a lot (different narrators), which can be mildly annoying, but the narrator does a good job making the different parts clear. All the different parts come together at the end and the jumping around is totally worth it.

Notable Quotes

“There is a hideous invention called the Dewey Decimal System. And you have to look up your topic in books and newspapers. Pages upon pages upon pages…”
Uncle Will frowned. “Didn’t they teach you how to go about research in that school of yours?”
“No. But I can recite ‘The Battle Hymn of the Republic’ while making martinis.”
“I weep for the future.”
“There’s where the martinis come in.”

“I thought research would be more glamorous, somehow. I’d give the librarian a secret code word and he’d give me the one book I needed and whisper the necessary page numbers. Like a speakeasy. With books.”



10 Responses to “Review * The Diviners by Libba Bray”

  1. Petty Witter

    Not prepared for the level of scariness, jumps around a lot even if it is worth it in the end …… So many good points but I’m afraid these two do put me off a little bit.
    Petty Witter recently posted…SILENT NOON.My Profile

  2. Courtney

    Seriously! That book is like forever long and now you are telling me that there is barely in romance in it!!! What the hell Kim!

    I hate to say this, but I think you just pushed the book a little further down on my tbr list. I mean long books are already intimidating so I wasn’t really looking at reading it any time soon…but now…
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