Release Date: September 5th 2017
Series: The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding #1
Genres: Action & Adventure, Family, Fantasy & Magic, General, Multigenerational, Young Adult
"I would say it's a pleasure to meet thee, Prosperity Oceanus Redding, but truly, I only anticipate the delights of destroying thy happiness."
Prosper is the only unexceptional Redding in his old and storied family history — that is, until he discovers the demon living inside him. Turns out Prosper's great-great-great-great-great-something grandfather made — and then broke — a contract with a malefactor, a demon who exchanges fortune for eternal servitude. And, weirdly enough, four-thousand-year-old Alastor isn't exactly the forgiving type.
The fiend has reawakened with one purpose — to destroy the family whose success he ensured and who then betrayed him. With only days to break the curse and banish Alastor back to the demon realm, Prosper is playing unwilling host to the fiend, who delights in tormenting him with nasty insults and constant attempts trick him into a contract. Yeah, Prosper will take his future without a side of eternal servitude, thanks.
Little does Prosper know, the malefactor's control over his body grows stronger with each passing night, and there's a lot Alastor isn't telling his dim-witted (but admittedly strong-willed) human host.
From #1 New York Times best-selling author Alexandra Bracken comes a tale of betrayal and revenge, of old hurts passed down from generation to generation. Can you ever fully right a wrong, ever truly escape your history? Or will Prosper and Alastor be doomed to repeat it?
Alexandra Bracken can’t really write anything poorly, so I was looking forward to see how she tackled writing a middle-grade novel. The results? I enjoyed THE DESPERATE TALE OF PROSPER REDDING, but it wasn’t quite what I expected.
First off, I feel like I have to warn people of the HUGE cliffhanger this book leaves off on. Knowing that this wasn’t going to be a standalone might have changed my reading experience a little. Also, I’m biased because I have a really poor memory and usually wait until there are two books out in a series to start one. But I digress.
Like the blurb says, this novel is about a boy named Prosper who happened to get stuck with the brunt of his family’s bad luck in the form of a demon named Alastor, who possesses him.
I expected Alastor, being a demon and all, would have been a lot more evil but he pretty much is all bark and no bite. I was fine with that, especially when you consider the interesting dynamic he has with Prosper, which was actually quite humorous. They bicker back and forth and most of their exchanges are pretty funny. I wish they had interacted more.
In terms of writing, Bracken delivers yet again. I do have to say that the pacing felt off though, it was slow at times, particularly when visiting the school the characters are attending. Also I think the book took place over a few days(?) which was somewhat odd. The last hundred pages were great though, I was definitely hooked on seeing what was going to happen, and there was heck of a twist.
I would recommend this book to any Alexandra Bracken or MG fans.