The Demon Catchers of Milan by Kat Beyer
Mia's ordinary life is disrupted in the most horrifying way possible when she is possessed by a hungry and powerful demon--and only saved by the arrival of relatives from Italy, the country her grandfather fled many decades ago. Now her cousins Emilio and Giuliano say the only way to keep her safe is for her to come back with them to Milan, to live, to learn Italian, to fall in and out of love, and to master the family trade: fighting all demons with the lore of bell, book, and candle. Milan is not what Mia expected, but it will change her forever, in this stunningly well-written novel about an American girl who, fleeing an ancient evil, finds her only salvation in her ancestral home.
I had not heard much about this book before I requested it on Netgalley, but the cover was beautiful and the summary sounded promising and different, so I wanted to give it a shot. While this wasn't exactly what I was expecting, it was still an entertaining and unique read.
The Demon Catchers of Milan sounded like a novel that would be full of action and plot-twists, but this wasn't the case. It started off with a bang, but soon slowed down. I was expecting something a little different in regards to the actual "demon catching", as well as more action, but even though it wasn't extremely fast-paced, The Demon Catchers of Milan still held my attention and I enjoyed the characters and setting.
I don't really know how to put this, but I enjoyed the book, even though I didn't feel like I had finished it, so to speak. I still felt there was a big plot-twist or revelation that was going to happen and the ending was a little bit of a let-down. Mia was kept in the dark about most things and, thus, so was the reader, which was at times frustrating. I did like Mia, though, and the fact that the majority of the book took place in Italy was a definite plus. Mia did have a great personality and I liked how she wasn't afraid to ask questions, even though she rarely got answers.
The other characters were a tad hard to keep track of, but a few really stood out to me. The Demon Catchers of Milan focused a lot more on family, rather than on romance, which was refreshing and it proved that not every book needs romance to work.
This was a book I feel a bit torn about because it had all the makings of a book I would love, but there was just something missing. I am still eager to see what is next for Kat Beyer because this debut had a lot of potential. I have to say this book was very original and unique mainly because the dark world of demons imagined by Kat Beyer was so fresh and different. All in all, this book left me with more questions than answers, but I enjoyed the character of Mia, the dark and mysterious setting, and the creative take on demons.
Overall: 3 out of 5 stars
August 28, 2012/Egmont USA/288 Pages/Young Adult