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Book Review: The Devil’s Right Hand by Lilith Saintcrow

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Dante is back in The Devil’s Right Hand, the third book in the Dante Valentine series by Lilith Saintcrow. After everything Dante has faced, the horrors of Rigger Hall, the death and rebirth of Japhrimel, and the very final passing of Jace Monroe, you would think that things couldn’t get any worse. But you would be wrong.

The Devil isn’t done with Dante. He’s been calling her for a long time and he’s tired of waiting for her answer. Dante has spent time recovering from her final battle in Rigger Hall away from Saint City, Japhrimel never very far away. She’s had time to relax and isn’t walking around with her sword in her hand all the time, an amazing thing for her. But when the Devil calls, you can’t ignore him forever.

The Devil contracts Dante as his new Right Hand. She has seven years to hunt down and kill four demons that have escaped from the bowels of hell. In return Japhrimel is given back his full demon powers and the Devil promises protection for Dante for all eternity. But he isn’t called the Father of Lies for nothing.

As Dante gets her first taste of battle since her near defeat by Mirovitch she realizes that she might be in over her head. She has become a pawn in the Devil’s game and he wasn’t kind enough to share the rules first. But it isn’t like Danny Valentine to back away from a fight and at the end of the day it is still one of the things she does best. With a new blade at her side, the first one lying broken at the bottom of the ocean, Dante wonders if she carries a blade that could kill the Devil.

One of the things that I’ve really enjoyed so far about this series is that with each book you get to see Dante and Japhrimel’s relationship evolve. All along Dante has treated Japhrimel like a human, no different from how she treats everyone else in her life. Dante seems to forget that Japhrimel is not a man but a demon and she receives a grim reminder of this fact.

Dante is also haunted by her past. Jace’s voice echoes through her mind, she sees his ghostly figure in a bar that he never visited in life, and once faced with a grown Eve all Dante can think about is her deceased friend and lover Doreen. It is a hard, hurtful past that she can’t put behind her, something that makes her more human despite the fact that she isn’t quite human anymore.

While you could pick this one up and enjoy it out of sequence with the rest of the novels I would recommend you start with Working for the Devil, the first book in the series. At this point there is just too much story, and while you would be able to pick it up along the way, wouldn’t you rather get to know Dante and Japhrimel from the beginning?

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