Devil in Ohio

Devil in Ohio

A strange, damaged girl lives with a family after escaping a cult in this debut YA suspense/thriller that was inspired by true events.When fifteen-year-old Jules Mathis comes home from school to find a strange girl, her mother explains that Mae is one of her patients at the hospital and will be staying with their family for a few days. But shortly after, Mae is wearing Jul...

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Title:Devil in Ohio
Author:Daria Polatin
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Devil in Ohio Reviews

  • Michelle

    I loved reading this book! Devil in Ohio follows the story of a teenage girl Mae, who escapes from a satanic cult. Mae moves in with her psychiatrist and family, where Jules, our other main character, takes her under her wing at home and school. But Jules starts to get weirded out by strange things that keep happening to her and her family now that Mae's around. And Mae keeps stepping into Jules social world, where it almost seems like she's trying to edge Jules out. The situation forces Jules t

    I loved reading this book! Devil in Ohio follows the story of a teenage girl Mae, who escapes from a satanic cult. Mae moves in with her psychiatrist and family, where Jules, our other main character, takes her under her wing at home and school. But Jules starts to get weirded out by strange things that keep happening to her and her family now that Mae's around. And Mae keeps stepping into Jules social world, where it almost seems like she's trying to edge Jules out. The situation forces Jules to take matters into her own hands... The mystery of Mae and where she came from kept me speeding through the novel. I also really loved the main character Jules, and how honestly she shared her feelings, even if they weren't always flattering. I'd recommend this book for age 13 and up, as the subject matter is a little dark. Overall a fun, sometimes scary, addictive read!

  • Megan

    I really loved reading this book. It appeals to a wide range of readers, because it is more interesting and has more depth than a lot of young adult novels out there. I really like the characterization of the main character, Jules. There are so many fun details about her love of photography, her hatred of mushrooms, and her perspective on the world. I think the way the teens are written is very smart, as they all have unique voices. They’re not innocent beings who are unaware of the realities of

    I really loved reading this book. It appeals to a wide range of readers, because it is more interesting and has more depth than a lot of young adult novels out there. I really like the characterization of the main character, Jules. There are so many fun details about her love of photography, her hatred of mushrooms, and her perspective on the world. I think the way the teens are written is very smart, as they all have unique voices. They’re not innocent beings who are unaware of the realities of the world. They’re witty and remind me of how my friends and I interacted in high school. The banter between Isaac and Jules is so natural and entertaining.

    The chapters of Devil in Ohio are short, so it flows really well. You can always fit in one more chapter before bed! The mixture of first person narration from Jules, third person with her mom Suzanne, and interviews between Mae and Suzanne keeps you engaged. It’s a page turner because of the mystery at its center, but also because of the writing style. The imagery is so vibrant. The line “Purple and blue swirls of blood circled just under her skin's surface like weather patterns of hurt" was one of my favorites!

    I highly recommend this book because it’s fun, spooky, and teaches a great lesson about appreciating the life you have.

  • Eric Zuckerman

    This book hooked me from the opening chapter and I flew through it. The hidden world of devil worshippers it exposes is fascinating, but what is even more impressive is how spectacularly it captures adolescence. The lead character, Jules, makes some decisions which made me cringe, but mostly because I know I might have done the same in my youth. Daria Polatin finds a way to keep the reader on Jules' side even while we're yelling at her to stop being so selfish. But it's that youthful selfishness

    This book hooked me from the opening chapter and I flew through it. The hidden world of devil worshippers it exposes is fascinating, but what is even more impressive is how spectacularly it captures adolescence. The lead character, Jules, makes some decisions which made me cringe, but mostly because I know I might have done the same in my youth. Daria Polatin finds a way to keep the reader on Jules' side even while we're yelling at her to stop being so selfish. But it's that youthful selfishness that rings so true. And while this book is very much about female experiences (with three vivid and captivating female characters at the center), it's truths about the choices we make growing up in our quest to be popular are universal. I loved this book and recommend it not only to young women, who are certainly the target audience, but to anyone who has ever struggled with trying to be popular while remaining true to oneself. Which is to say, I recommend it to everyone.

  • Alexander

    Fast-paced, funny, heartfelt and suspenseful! Immediately, I felt for Jules. Her family dynamic was relatable and once Mae comes into her life and starts wearing Jules' clothes and falling for her crush, I was locked in.

    Who is Mae? That was the driving force of the novel and it kept the pages turning. Devil worshipping? Cults? I had to find out! (I ended up staying up past my bedtime to keep reading.)

    The level of detail was incredible (the rituals and cult) and the fact that it was based on a t

    Fast-paced, funny, heartfelt and suspenseful! Immediately, I felt for Jules. Her family dynamic was relatable and once Mae comes into her life and starts wearing Jules' clothes and falling for her crush, I was locked in.

    Who is Mae? That was the driving force of the novel and it kept the pages turning. Devil worshipping? Cults? I had to find out! (I ended up staying up past my bedtime to keep reading.)

    The level of detail was incredible (the rituals and cult) and the fact that it was based on a true story gives me goosebumps writing while I’m writing this!

    Suzanne, Jules’ mother, drives the plot so well. And the more Suzanne reveals about Mae's history, the more danger she puts her own family in...

    A killer debut novel that has gotten me so excited to read the author’s next work!

  • Abdi Nazemian

    DEVIL IN OHIO will grip you with its frightening twists and turns, but it is its tenderness that will stay with you. Daria Polatin brings humor and heart to a story that shines some much-needed light on the darkness of our world. Read this book!

  • Mira Gibson

    I am not a "YA" reader, but this particular book was recommended to me since I love and eat up mystery novels. First off, all I can say is I loved "living" in this world and I wish the book hadn't ended, it was that good. As far as I'm concerned it surpassed whatever "Young Adult" as a 'genre' is supposed to mean, because I'm an avid mystery reader and Devil in Ohio quenched that thirst. What I'm about to say might at first blush sound like a criticism (harsh perhaps) but that's not the case...I

    I am not a "YA" reader, but this particular book was recommended to me since I love and eat up mystery novels. First off, all I can say is I loved "living" in this world and I wish the book hadn't ended, it was that good. As far as I'm concerned it surpassed whatever "Young Adult" as a 'genre' is supposed to mean, because I'm an avid mystery reader and Devil in Ohio quenched that thirst. What I'm about to say might at first blush sound like a criticism (harsh perhaps) but that's not the case...I was sucked in--phenomenally sucked in to this story!--and had to keep flipping the pages, because the story was so intriguing that I needed to know what happened to Mae. This YA novel is told from Jules' perspective--a teenaged, self proclaimed "average" girl. I love that about this novel. But Jules isn't the intrigue, Mae is. Mae is a cult survivor who is "taken in" by her psychiatrist, the teenaged daughter of which--Jules--is tasked with "helping her fit in". Devil in Ohio is a success of suspense and intrigue that transcends genre--again, I'm no "YA" fan, I just love a good page turner with mystery!--because the story is told through Jules' teenaged eyes, a story that centers on the enigmatic Mae, a cult survivor, but is shared so thinly, so slightly, because it is a teenaged girl--an average girl--who tells the tale. What I love most about how Polatin tells this--brace yourself, it's a true story!--tale, is that she keeps the narrative grounded in the teenaged girl's perspective. Honestly, as a reader and ***ahem, LOVER of mysteries***I was dying to read a chapter from Mae's perspective. Show me the darkness of the cult, show me the perversions! But Polatin was perhaps braver and smarter than that and refused to "sensationalize" the "cult culture". Instead, she dropped harrowing glimpses of this world that Mae--thank God!--escaped, and let the reader draw their own conclusions. Oh, the conclusions I drew! At the end of the day, this was a book that had an effect on me, the kind of book that left me thinking--stewing in fact--once the final page had been turned. I personally feel that this is the mark of a great book. I loved "living" in this world with the characters and I was sad when it ended. I highly recommend anyone read it, regardless of their preferred genre--hell, I love me a mystery and never thought twice about "YA" but this book blew my preconceived notions out of the water!--It's a fast and fun read. Go for it! Polatin delivers in a way few do!

  • Amy's Book Reviews

    3.5 STARS

    Jules is used to flying under the radar in her family and in school. Then her psychiatrist mother Suzanne brings home Mae, a girl who escaped a satanic cult. Soon Jules and Mae popular, but danger lurks around the corner. Has Mae been found by the cult? Or is she not as innocent as she seems.

    Add Suzanne to the list of unintentionally horrible mom’s in YA lit. Psychiatrists aren’t allowed to take patients home. Egad! The longer Mae stays, the deeper Suzanne seems to be pulled into an obs

    3.5 STARS

    Jules is used to flying under the radar in her family and in school. Then her psychiatrist mother Suzanne brings home Mae, a girl who escaped a satanic cult. Soon Jules and Mae popular, but danger lurks around the corner. Has Mae been found by the cult? Or is she not as innocent as she seems.

    Add Suzanne to the list of unintentionally horrible mom’s in YA lit. Psychiatrists aren’t allowed to take patients home. Egad! The longer Mae stays, the deeper Suzanne seems to be pulled into an obsession with the girl, neglecting her marriage, kids and job. Hello, unresolved issues. Suzanne, abused as a child, clearly hasn’t done enough work on herself, nor does she understand the concept of countertransference. The plot lost me when Suzanne insisted Jules drive her to the murderous cult to find Mae, with no regard to her own daughter’s safety. Worst. Mother. Ever.

    The ending seemed to open up more possibilities of danger, so I’m not certain whether there will be a sequel and if not, why such an ending.

    Why the bump up to 4 stars? I truly loved the reading experience of DEVIL IN OHIO. I liked Jules and had a lot of empathy for her struggles. Daria Polatin structured the story that most chapters were in Jules’s voice, with some third person POV chapters about Suzanne and her work with Mae. I wish the chapters had been labeled on in a less random order. One minute I’m reading Jules, the next chapter I’m not sure right away.

    THE DEVIL IN OHIO is more fun than an example of literary prowess, which is okay with me.

  • Stacee

    This was rather underwhelming.

    I liked Jules and her family well enough. At the beginning they had a great, supportive dynamic. There were several secondary characters, yet no one really stood out.

    Plot wise, it had a lot of promise. It started out intriguing and it was a quick read. Sadly, everything quickly turned to drama drama and more drama and coupled with Jules’s mom’s obsession with Mae’s well being, it got rather boring and felt repetitive. Plus the ending felt rushed and unresolved.

    Over

    This was rather underwhelming.

    I liked Jules and her family well enough. At the beginning they had a great, supportive dynamic. There were several secondary characters, yet no one really stood out.

    Plot wise, it had a lot of promise. It started out intriguing and it was a quick read. Sadly, everything quickly turned to drama drama and more drama and coupled with Jules’s mom’s obsession with Mae’s well being, it got rather boring and felt repetitive. Plus the ending felt rushed and unresolved.

    Overall, there were some creepy things, but the story lacked the tension a subject like this requires.

    **Huge thanks to Feiwel & Friends for providing the arc free of charge**

  • Georgia Meagher

    Two stars is being generous. I think this book had a lot of potential, and I chose to write a report on it for school because it perfectly fits with what we are learning (I’m taking a Satan in pop culture and literature course) and I chose to do a close analysis on this book, because of the content. I’m going to get a lot of use out of this for my paper, even if I’m going to bash this book.

    I guess I’ll start with the things I did like-which mostly was the concept. I wish the author would have f

    Two stars is being generous. I think this book had a lot of potential, and I chose to write a report on it for school because it perfectly fits with what we are learning (I’m taking a Satan in pop culture and literature course) and I chose to do a close analysis on this book, because of the content. I’m going to get a lot of use out of this for my paper, even if I’m going to bash this book.

    I guess I’ll start with the things I did like-which mostly was the concept. I wish the author would have focused more on the cultish stuff and not the main character complaining about how dull her average life is on every page. When a new girl comes in she shakes things up by “taking over” the main characters life. I wanted more creepiness, more action, anything to drown out the main characters whining. I also read this in about a day. It’s really easy to get through if you’re just going for page count. I also gave it two stars instead of just one because it got more interesting near the end when she has to go get Mae from the cult because the main character (Julia) basically sent her back there in the first place.

    Julia is my main problem with this book. Besides Bella Sean, I think she is probably the most unbearable character I have ever read. (Sorry to all the Twilight fans, I just can’t stand whiny characters). She complains consistently-about her social ranking, about her only having one best friend (who is too good for her anyways), her complaining about her crush not responding to her awkwardness (was it supposed to be cute? I get that people are awkward but in this case it just made her seem like she had no conversation skills). I also really wanted to like the family aspect but nobody was around for me to ever care about them.

    Jules also just wasn’t very smart in general. And her snarky moments were really lacking. I haven’t had this much to say about a book in awhile, but I mostly am just annoyed that I chose to write a report on this. I think maybe this could work for people who are a tad younger than me, because the writing was also a bit juvenile for my taste.

    I sound harsh but at least it was easy for me to read through quickly. I can always appreciate a book that I can read in one sitting. Also it helped me reach my goodreads goal for the year, so that is something I suppose. 😂

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