Satan's Salesman by Matthew Davenport
Many of us are familiar with the story of Faust, who made a deal with the Devil by trading his soul for knowledge and pleasure. While Faust would live a charmed life for the remainder of his days, his soul would burn in Hell for eternity after he died. Faust’s story poses the question if getting want you want is worth the ultimate cost, or if the ends justify the means. In Matthew Davenport’s novella Satan’s Salesman, this story is approached with an interesting twist: what if there is a sales team working for Hell that are trying to close these deals, getting desperate people to trade their souls for their ultimate wish? It gives a literal and comic interpretation to the phrase, “Corporate is Hell.”
Shane is a talented salesman with a loving girlfriend and plenty of ambition. He just misses getting the promotion he deserves through no fault of his own, and soon hears about a company called Perdition Investments that could help him out. They attempt to recruit Shane to work for them, but instead of earning cash, Shane would be able to make his wildest dreams come true insomuch as he follows the rules and met his monthly quota. However, the nature of the business forces Shane to evaluate his intentions in life, his adherence to a moral code, and what kind of life he truly wants.
While I had a few issues with the writing style of Davenport, I did overall enjoy this story. It is simultaneously a satire of sales culture, a philosophical dive into morality, and a meditation on the strengths of ambition and greed. But even though it’s a pretty short book to begin with, I think a good portion of it could also have been edited down. The book’s opening lines were mired in unnecessary detail, and that trend continued for the entirety of the story. I can’t think of an opening paragraph with less of a hook than “As Shane Lowe slid the keys to his Sebring into his pocket, he pressed the lock button. The resulting quick honk of the horn let him know that the car was locked.” There were plenty more instances of needless exposition that had me wanting to sell my own soul if Davenport would just jump to the important scenes. Luckily, those scenes carried enough weight to keep me interested in Shane’s story. There were some nice plot developments and unexpected twists, and though the end was a little rushed, I enjoyed how Davenport decided to end the story.
I’m undecided if I can classify this book as horror. It certainly has elements containing the threat of horror – there’s demons, but they all have management and VP roles. There’s the threat of eternal damnation, but it seems no different than the threats that many religious believers must face every waking day. Unless you consider your own life a horror story, then I think this book works as more of a biting satire into corporate culture. Once I decided upon this tone, I began to enjoy this book much more. So, if you’re interested in a Faustian story with a modern twist and healthy dose of dark comedy, then you might enjoy Satan’s Salesman.
This Satan's Salesman book review was written by Adam Weller
Have you read Satan's Salesman?
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.
Satan's Salesman reader reviews
7.2/10 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
Never Knew Another
Fugitive Rachel Nolander is a newcomer to the city of Dogsland, where the rich throw parties and the poor just do whatever they can to scrape by. Supported by her brother D...
Apocalyptic Montessa and Nuclear Lulu
Mercedes M Yardley
Her mama always said she was special. His daddy called him a demon. But even monsters can fall in love. Montessa Tovar is walking home alone when she is abducted by Lu, a s...
A flash of light and Detective Joe Dante steps through. No longer on the cobblestone streets of 1961 Boston, Joe finds himself in a horrifying new world-Hell itself. Joe wa...
The Dirty Streets of Heaven
Sure, he takes the occasional trip to Heaven, but his job as an advocate - arguing the fate of the recently deceased - keeps him pretty busy on Earth, and he's more tha...
The Hollow City
Michael Shipman is paranoid schizophrenic; he suffers from hallucinations, delusions, and complex fantasies of persecution and horror. That's bad enough. But what can h...
Life sucks and then you die. Or, if you’re James Stark, you spend eleven years in Hell as a hitman before finally escaping, only to land back in the hell-on-earth tha...
Miriam Black knows when you will die. Still in her early twenties, she's foreseen hundreds of car crashes, heart attacks, strokes, suicides, and slow deaths by cancer. ...
Deadbeat - Makes You Stronger
Max and Tom are old, old friends, who used to be actors. Tom now owns a jazz nightclub called Deadbeat which, as well as being their source of income, is also something of ...
The Year of the Ladybird
It is the summer of 1976, the hottest since records began and a young man leaves behind his student days and learns how to grow up. A first job in a holiday camp beckons. B...
Great fantasy books published in 2018
"A bold and subversive retelling of the goddess's story," this #1 New York Times bestseller is "both epic and intimate in its scop...
Age of War
Michael J Sullivan
The alliance of humans and renegade Fhrey is fragile - and about to be tested as never before. Persephone keeps the human clans from turning on one another through her iron...
Legion: Lies of the Beholder
Stephen Leeds, also known as 'Legion', has a unique mental condition. He can become an expert on any subject in hours... and with every new area of expertise a new ...
A Veil of Spears
The Night of Endless Swords nearly saw the destruction of Sharakhai, and since then the Kings have come down hard on the rebelloious Moonless Host. Hundreds have been murde...
The Ember Blade
A land under occupation. A legendary sword. A young man’s journey to find his destiny.Aren has lived by the rules all his life. He’s never questione...
Fire and Blood
George RR Martin
From the masterly imagination behind A Game of Thrones - one of the greatest fantasy epics of all time and an unmissable HBO hit series - comes a definitive history of West...
In Mystic Class Nona Grey begins to learn the secrets of the universe. But so often even the deepest truths just make our choices harder. Before she leaves the Convent of S...
Iron and Magic
Hugh d’Ambray, Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Warlord of the Builder of Towers, served only one man. Now his immortal, nearly omnipotent master has cast him aside. Hugh ...
The Divine Cities Trilogy
Robert Jackson Bennett
A special omnibus edition, collecting all three books of Robert Jackson Bennett’s acclaimed Divine Cities trilogy in a single volume. &nbs...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: