Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date: 7 July 2015
Format: Paperback, 432 pgs
Magician-turned-FBI-agent Jessica Blackwood returns in this sequel to Angel Killer; in which the last investigation case requires her intelligence and her expertise in the art of illusions, something which she'd done in the past and tried to bury after she'd left home to live on her own. Her father and grandfather had worked together in countless performances on stage, and Jessica was taught to perform little acts since she was a girl. However, one incident had nearly caused her death, and she'd tried to shun away from performing since then. Her relationship with her grandfather remains lukewarm, but she respect him and would still approach him for some magic advice, just like the case she's looking into in this installment.
An explosion took away four lives in a church and a local sheriff is the suspect until he was found dead eventually. The FBI has gathered evidence that these people had known each other and that their death are connected to an event happened years ago. But what they aren't sure of is is the sheriff's erratic behaviour is psychological or pharmacological. Did someone lead him to doing something under a confused mind?
As Jessica digs further, she realises there's something more than meets the eye and someone wants her dead, as well. With no evidence of her suspicion and no support from her superiors, Jessica knew she has to rely on her own to unravel all the truth and she is fortunate she has one or two reliable agents who trusted her and Damian Knight, an ex-boyfriend who seems to have many connections but whose real identity remains a mystery to many, including Jessica.
From state cities to rural Tixato in Mexico, Jessica learnt that whoever is responsible for the church explosion is someone who has intelligence, resources and power to rid of any links pointing at him or her and the ultimate purpose of all is to seek revenge of what happened on one fateful night involving the sheriff and victims of the church explosion.
If there's magic and mayhem in the first installment, Angel Killer, then there's actions and more actions in this sequel as there are implications ranging from diabolical forces to drug cartels to the Vatican that have our determined heroine running around. While I found the actions entertaining, what I also enjoyed reading about this book is Jessica's relationship with her grandfather as I felt it is more in depth here. Raised from a family of illusionists, Jessica is fully aware of the danger they are always in and perhaps because of this mindset, she isn't afraid of taking chances and relying on her instincts. I also liked reading about the complicated relationship she'd had with Damian. I still wasn't sure about him, but after saving Jessica for countless times (despite his obsessive attention on her) I think he wouldn't be that bad of a character, right?
Reading this book has also set me thinking that some things may not always seem what we think them to be. Right and wrong, good and bad... there's always a fine line between them and sometimes it's hard to judge them, viewing from different perspectives. While Name of the Devil is a sequel, it could be read as a standalone but I'd recommend reading it in order for the characters development.