About The Devil You Know
Eighteen-year-old Arcadia wants adventure. Living in a tiny Florida town with her dad and four-year-old brother, Cadie spends most of her time working, going to school, and taking care of her family. So when she meets two handsome cousins at a campfire party, she finally has a chance for fun. They invite her and friend to join them on a road trip, and it’s just the risk she’s been craving-the opportunity to escape. But what starts out as a fun, sexy journey quickly becomes dangerous when she discovers that one of them is not at all who he claims to be. One of them has deadly intentions.
After meeting Trish Doller at ApollyCon in March, I knew I had to read this book. I loved the idea that it’s set in Florida, but not at the beach, and while it’s a summer story, it’s a whole different kind of tale than the usual Florida vacation! As with Where the Stars Still Shine, the Florida setting is super vivid. As a Florida girl myself, I often nodded along with the descriptions and laughed with Cadie at some of the things the out-of-town boys asked about life in the Sunshine State.
I think my favorite part of the book was the vivid details about Cadie’s memories with her mom, her relationship with her brother and even Noah’s memories. All those little things gave the story so much depth and really made the characters seem real.
There’s definitely a position on the romance angle of the story. Cadie thinks a lot about conversations she’s had with her mom about sex and her own feelings that she shouldn’t feel guilty, that it’s right to do it when she feels read, and that it doesn’t need to be special or limited to one experience.
As far as the rest of the emotional experience of the story—I found myself totally wrapped up in the suspense. I sat down to read for five minutes and didn’t even realize how much time had passed before I’d read five chapters, was late for everything, and had to make myself stop!
If you’re a super sharp cookie, you’ll probably figure out some of the plot before it’s revealed, but even if that’s the case, don’t let that ruin it for you. I was pretty sure from early on about who the good guys and bad guys were, but it didn’t lessen my enjoyment of the read at all. There were enough other reveals and intriguing moments keeping me turning page after page all the way until the end. If I hadn’t needed to stop reading that first session, I probably would have read straight through the entire book right then. As it was, I finished reading the same night.
Major characters are Caucasian.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used with moderate frequency.
Cadie worries that her ex-boyfriend may have shared intimate details about their relationship with his crude twin brother, who makes lewd comments to Cadie about oral sex.
Teens gather at a camp site for a party, where they drink alcohol and go skinny dipping. Cadie takes off her dress, and boys make some crude comments.
Cadie pretty quickly falls for a new boy. They share intense kisses and undress together. Later, she has sex with a boy. At one point, she tries to distract a boy by making him think she wants to have sex with him even though she doesn’t. It’s a desperate move and unclear how far she’s going to make herself go until she can’t do it.
She thinks a lot about sex and resents possible judgment about her choices. She believes she should be able to have sex when she wants without it being a big deal, and recalls her mom’s counsel advising her of this, too.
Brief mention of desperate prayer to God or anyone in the Heavens listening.
One boy appears to be the victim of a bullying incident. Cadie finds him naked and tied to a tree in the morning after a party.
References to a drunk fight between a man and his son which caused serious injury to both parties.
Twice people die of gunshot wounds, off-scene. It happens once in-scene. A boy attacks a girl and accuses her of making him hurt her. It’s clear he means her serious harm.
A crocodile grabs a boy.
Teens drink alcohol while camping and at a party. Reference to a couple Cadie thinks might be smoking pot.