Playing Devil’s Advocate written by Andrea Dean Van Scoyoc is 254 pages in length including author bio and warnings to the reader.
Andrea Dean Van Scoyoc or The Mistress Of Macabre as she is well known on Myspace and Facebook, has her work described as “creepy, macabre and sadistic” fiction. Her works delve deeply into the world of the supernatural with worlds inhabited by shapshifters, vampires and zombies and focused on homosexual gothic and coming of age themes. While Andrea has published many novels and eBooks she has also accredited to her name a book of poetry, and two collections of short stories. She publishes two magazines Twisted Dreams and Worlds Within – Worlds Beyond, and is the editor-in-chief of The Odd Mind Magazine. In 2005, her novel A Man Of Two Worlds was named Preditors and Editors Best Horror Novel. In 2006 she came in second while in 2007 she came in third.
When Blayre returns home from school with a skip in his step and his report card in hand little does he expect to find the mutilated corpses of his parents awaiting him, nor does he expect to find the killers still on the premises. From this moment on Blayre’s life will change but how? And why?
It’s easy to blame God and the Devil for our outcome in life when we feel we’ve been dealt the wrong cards or even events seem to mimic one another and for Blayre who grows up to be just like those killers there is no God to turn to for Satan has moulded him into his own tool. But every cloud has a silver lining and even in Hell a little hope can still exist for nothing is stronger than the power of love not even the Devil himself.
Playing Devil’s Advocate is a tragic story of loss, of how so easily one’s life can be changed until they become a tormented soul, twisted, unable to trust and love, giving up all hope and turning ones back on God. While there is a feeling of abandonment for the character of Blayre, there is hope and as a reader you find yourself in a similar situation as another character, disliking who Blayre has become over the years and yet wanting him to finally defeat Satan. The power of love, hope, trust and belief play strongly in this novel with emphasis on hope and belief. It is the age old story of good versus evil where good has been twisted into another form of evil.
Andrea Dean Van Scoyoc is a talented writer who is more than capable of taking her readers straight into her stories and making her readers both love and hate the main character at the same time. While some would say the foul language and graphic acts of murder and torture are too much and should remain in darkness, I think we as readers should remember this IS fiction, THIS is what we came to read and should expect no less of any author.
Playing Devil’s Advocate is a wonderful trek to Hell and back with plenty of death and laughter along the way keeping a balance. I would recommend this book to anyone over the age of 18 years due to the strong language and scenes presented. I give the PDA 4.5 out of 5 stars.
By R.N. Hadley