Breaking the Devil’s Heart by HA Goodman
When Stewart and Layla recruit a demon to spy on the Devil, their decision takes them on whirlwind ride through the afterlife.
Breaking the Devil's Heart is part of the Logic of Demons series but can also be read as a stand-alone book. It will linger long in your thoughts and force you to look at life (and the afterlife) from a different perspective.
The plus-points of Breaking the Devil's Heart. First off I must say the book is unique and something I have not read before. Portraying the afterlife in such a way was for me both funny and engaging - I had never thought about how it must be and during the reading I was wondering, "Hmm... what if?". Just for a fast reference I think the closest book that has come to this afterlife/hell concept would be Tom Holt’s The Portable Door, where an office firm is run by goblins and the like. But in Breaking the Devils Heart Goodman goes even further in portraying that Hell, yes Hell, is run as a bureaucratic agency with sales, a marketing and telemarketing department and even its own stock market. When I first read that these would be some features in Breaking the Devils Heart, I couldn't quite imagine in how Goodman would work in these ideas however it was quickly evident that Goodman put a lot of time and effort into these places to really make them stand-out and incorporate then into the story. Well done!
Secondly, the plot line. Although some might say that the plot introduced was too ambitious and too grand I am of the opinion that, in a story where both Heaven and Hell make an appearances, such a plot line was just spot on. Goodman tells Breaking the Devil Heart through the eyes of Stewart. Stewart and his girlfriend Layla have an ambition to stop all the evilness in the world by just one thing. Destroying the formula. It was refreshing that Goodman used this aspect as being the driving motivation behind all the havoc and cause of violence on Earth. In exemplifying the violence that has occurred in the past Goodman takes no sides in which histories he uses, from Hiroshima to the Armenian genocide, which I think was quite daring since it was bold and may put off some readers.
In the beginning chapters of the book I found the pace too slow as Goodman directly throws you into the storyline and doesn't give you any armbands so it took me a while to fully understand what Goodman’s intentions were with Breaking the Devil's Heart. The first half of the book followed a linear flow as Stewart and Layla went from setting to setting with no sudden plot twists thrown in. I think that Goodman could have used the departments of Hell better, throwing in a curveball here and there. In the last few chapters Goodman shows what he CAN do. There was already a build to an certain climax but what Goodman did with the ending was original and something which I did not expect. What I thought was brilliantly done was the elaboration on the plot line through the eyes of Stewart, in the final chapter Goodman explains though Stewart eyes how he came to see everything, and now thinking about it everything that Goodman introduced makes even more sense (and just because of this I plan to re-read it again soon!).
In books where both Heaven and Hell play a role there are always angels, demon and often mortals. Breaking the Devil's Heart plays out in the afterlife so you cross out the mortals... Instead Goodman uses a third class called observers. It took me some back reading to find out what role an observer actually played as they are neither angel nor demon and in this story only at the end does this fully make sense.
I'm a big fan of world building in books because with a good surrounding authors can get more out of their books. Although the departments of Hell were lively described I found that the whole afterlife scene did lack in explanations. For me it felt that Stewart and Layla just jumped from location to location (even through time, from 1960 to 1915 and back to 1943 which was cool) and I would have liked to have seen a more coming together of everything. I also found that the character dialogues were a bit rough, although they did improve on The Quest for Nadine’s Souls they still did not feel quite natural to me. But this could be in relation to the boldness of Goodman’s story.
All in all I found that Breaking the Devil's Heart was a very unique book. And I'm glad that I had the opportunity to read and review it. The whole concept was well thought through and the scenes in Hell were vividly told. Goodman really sets himself apart with the unique story and throwing most of the religious and political views out of the door, I somehow feel that this won't be the last that we heard of Goodman. And finally... Hell as a corporate bureaucratic institution... brilliant.
This Breaking the Devil’s Heart book review was written by Jasper de Joode
All reviews for: Login of Demons
Logic of Demons
Login of Demons: Book 1
What would you do if the love of your life was murdered by a deranged killer? Would you become a vigilante and seek retribution? And would this revenge affect those you car...
Breaking the Devil’s Heart
Login of Demons: Book 2
When Stewart and Layla recruit a demon to spy on the Devil, their decision takes them on whirlwind ride through the afterlife....
Have you read Breaking the Devil’s Heart?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Breaking the Devil’s Heart reader reviews
8.2/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
On a remote jungle island, genetic engineers have created a dinosaur game park. An astonishing technique for recovering and cloning dinosaur DNA has been discovered. Now on...
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
Harry August is on his deathbed. Again. No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the kno...
For Kivrin Engle, preparing an on-site study of one of the deadliest eras in humanity's history was as simple as receiving inoculations against the diseases of the four...
The Sixth World of Men
Walter E Mark
On the surface, the sixth world of men is a glorious world. It is a world of great technological advancement. It is a world that has been at peace for a hundred years. Whil...
The Lathe of Heaven
Ursula Le Guin
George Orr is a mild and unremarkable man who finds the world a less than pleasant place to live: seven billion people jostle for living space and food. But George dreams d...
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage
Tsukuru Tazaki had four best friends at school. By chance all of their names contained a colour. The two boys were called Akamatsu, meaning ‘red pine’, and Oumi...
The Chronicles of Fate and Choice
This is where it all began. Everything. Love, hate, good, evil, us and them. Before the Gods by KS Turner successfully breaks the genre rules to produce something unique, c...
A combination of previously unseen stories, favourites from Interzone and contributions to numerous anthologies, IMAGINED SLIGHTS showcases one of the most versatile and el...
A Scanner Darkly
Philip K Dick
Substance D is not known as Death for nothing. It is the most toxic drug ever to find its way on to the streets of LA. It destroys the links between the brain's two hem...
Beauty and Sadness
The successful writer Oki has reached middle age and is filled with regrets. He returns to Kyoto to find Otoko, a young woman with whom he had a terrible affair many years ...
Kikuji has been invited to a tea ceremony by a mistress of his dead father. He is shocked to find there the mistress's rival and successor, Mrs. Ota, and that the cerem...
Leila Fenech is dead. And so is her brother Dieter. But what's really pissing her off is how he sold his afterlife as part of an insurance scam and left her to pick up ...
The Shadow Year
In New York's Long Island, in the unpredictable decade of the 1960s, a young boy laments the approaching close of summer and the advent of sixth grade. Growing up in a ...
Dead Men Naked
After the sudden death of his best friend Neil, involving a 6-foot giant crow and quite some Tequila, Lou’s life takes an unexpected turn towards the impossible. As L...
This is an awesome concept with awesome characters and that familiar Sanderson style of writing. I feel like with all this awesomeness around the place, the plot never gets...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
Best of 2016
Whitney H Murphy
As survivors in a ruined city, there are some realities we can’t escape. Or forget. Like the truth that our bodies don’t work anymore. We all know it—with ev...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Paris was supposed to save Hallie. Now... well, let’s just say Paris has other ideas. There’s a strange woman called The Chronometrist who will not leave her alone. Garbled warnings from bizarre creatures keep her up at night. And there’s a time portal in the keg room of the bar where she works. Soon, Hallie is tumbling through...
A corrupted city. A dark dream of power. Luke is a prisoner, condemned for a murder he didn’t commit. Abi is a fugitive, desperate to free him before magic breaks his...
The Fifth Empire of Man
Rob J Hayes
The Pirate Isles are united under Drake Morrass’ flag, but the war has only just begun. There’s still a long way to go before he’s able to call himself Ki...
Ian C Esslemont
After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To ...
Age of Swords
Michael J Sullivan
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the co...
A Time of Dread
The Ben-Elim, a race of warrior angels, once vanquished a mighty demon horde. Now they rule the Banished lands. But their dominion is brutally enforced and their ancient en...
The Last Dog on Earth
Adrian J Walker
Every dog has its day... And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can...