The Devil Rides Out
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The Devil Rides Out (Black Magic #1)

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  591 ratings  ·  54 reviews
29 Apr 1935 - 4 May 1935
Black Magic is still practised in all the great cities of the world. This novel tells with macabre detail of a beautiful woman caught in a web of Satanists, of a young man brought to the verge of madness through his dabbling with the powers of evil.

As in Dennis Wheatley's The Forbidden Territory we meet the Duke de Richleau, Simon Aron, the Princess...more
Mass Market Paperback
Published by Arrow Books (first published 1934)
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David
I picked up a set of Dennis Wheatley paperbacks recently a car boot sale for a few pounds. They were sixties editions, bashed about a bit, pages yellowing, with faded covers depicting pistol-toting Tom Jones-type men and scantily-clad women clutching bed-sheets to their bosoms, wrapped in a thick elastic band (the books, not the bosoms). A sudden wave of pure pleasure swept over me as the floodgates of memory opened, drowning present cares with images of happy school holidays spent in the compan...more
Mel
I bought this book because I am very fond of the Hammer film, and wondered how the book compared. I have to say I enjoyed it tremendously. It was a very fast read, it was written quite simply, but there were very effective passages of action as well as lots of interesting discussion between the characters on the nature of magic and good and evil. . I was amused by the introduction which mentioned how in order to do research he met with both Crowley and Montague Summers, and that it was Montague...more
Sandy
When I first saw the 1968 horror film "The Devil Rides Out" several years back at one of NYC's numerous revival theatres, I thought it was one of the best Hammer films that I'd ever seen, and made a mental note to check out Dennis Wheatley's 1934 source novel one day. That resolve was further strengthened when I read a very laudatory article by Stephen Volk on the book in Newman & Jones' excellent overview volume "Horror: Another 100 Best Books." Now that I have finally read what is generall...more
Dfordoom
Dennis Wheatley is one of those authors who has gone from topping bestseller lists to complete oblivion in the space of less than 30 years. As recently as the 1970s he was one of the most widely read authors in the world, with total sales exceeding 50 million copies. He has a reputation for jingoism, racism, sexism and insanely reactionary political views, and for his unswerving belief that Satanism is a major force in the modern world and that we should have nothing to do with it because it’s r...more
Bill  Kerwin

An absorbing tale of upper class Satanists up to their usual mischief, marred by Wheatley's casual English public school snobbery and xenophobia. Sure, it's old fashioned, but Wheatley really knows how to tell a story. (Check out the movie version too--sometimes called "The Devil's Bride" in the USA--with Christopher Lee as the Duke de Richleau.)
Craigb
Erm...I read this because my Dad said Dennis Wheatley was one of the masters of horror. Yes Dad....maybe before the 1970s. But I decided to placate him and read at least one of Wheatley's novels. Well this book will NOT scare you. Maybe because we've become familiar to more psychological horrors since the Exorcist. That said this book is extremley well written and Wheatley does have a gift for narrative prose. It will not scare though and read at your peril.....!!!!
Simon
An action packed thriller focusing on the practice of black magic. Good fun but some infuriatingly dense characters.
Jean-marcel
While Dennis Wheatley may have been quite a sensation in his day, I certainly hadn't heard of him until I came across the Hammer Productions film based on this novel. I've owned the film for years now and frankly love it, and because it's indellibly imprinted on my psyche, I'm going to talk about the movie more than I normally would in a book review. Normally, I feel that the two artistic media are of equal merit and should generally be kept apart and considered as separate entities even when th...more
Wilson
Occult, Qabalah, Devil-worshipping, Astronomy, Astrology, Christianity, Black Magic, Yoga, Mysticism among many other areas of thought get mixed together in this famous adeventure thriller from Dennis Wheatley. All of the various modes of thoughts are given equal validity within the narrative and Wheatley basically seems to treat them all as existing within his created world. This gives the novel a dichotomous appearance, on one hand it is a stiff upper lip English adventure yarn, but between th...more
Brian Steed
Wheatley is turning into a guilty pleasure. Hokey, occult-based action, with liberal helpings of Wheatley’s infamous jingoism scattered throughout. Wheatley’s obvious belief in the superiority of the British people in particular (and the Caucasian race generally) is an interesting archival record of the time in which he wrote, and it’s hard to be offended by a dead writer whose viewpoints are so obviously dated. Just sit back and laugh at the throw-away paranoid racist lines!
Ser
There is always much insanity in our bookgroup meetings, but this month’s hilarity went through the roof top. It was my turn to choose and I chose ‘The Devil Rides Out’. Why? Because I love the movie and saw a couple of good reviews of the book, so I decided to give it a go. I also thought most of my fellow bookgroupers would enjoy it.

I am happy to say I was right. From the beginning everything is exciting and manic. The language is just something else: “I’d rather be dead than see you monkeying...more
Harriet-lisa
This was a fab book, mentally disturbing and quite scary in the middle :)
Neil Davies
Still the best Black Magic story I've read! Excellent.
Jonathon Dabell
Let me start with a grumble - there are a couple of things that rather spoilt my enjoyment of this famous occultism story. Firstly, I couldn't believe for a second in the main character, the Duke De Richlieu. This guy is such an expert on so many things, and is always ready with a solution or escape plan, or some titbit of knowledge which saves the hero's lives, that he lacks real credibility as a character. Secondly, the ending feels like a cheat... you know when you're a kid, and you're writin...more
Matti Karjalainen
Ranskalaisemigrantti De Richleau käy ystävineen pelastamaan pulaan joutunutta toveriaan, joka on joutunut keinoja kaihtamattoman Mocatan johtaman saatananpalvojien joukon pauloihin. Hyvän ja pahan välisessä taistelussa panokset ovat kovat ja aseina toimivat niin musta kuin valkoinenkin magia. Oma roolinsa keitoksessa on myös kauniilla Tanith-neidolla ja mystisellä Sethin amuletilla.

Englantilainen jännityskirjailija Dennis Wheatley lienee suurelle yleisölle tunnetuin kauhuromaanistaan "The Devil...more
Alex Stargazer

A well-written and well-plotted novel, but...


I don’t usually do this, but I think this book needs an introduction.


The Devil Rides Out is a 1930s horror novel written by Dennis Wheatley—an author known for his dabblings in the occult, among other things. It was unusual at the time, and in its heyday, sold millions of copies.


Now lets get down to my usual business: writing, plot, and characters.


Writing-wise, its good but not fantastic. There is a fine variety of punctuation, although it can feel e

...more
Fiza Pathan
Book : The Devil Rides Out
Author: Dennis Wheatley

This was the first time I came across a book by Dennis Wheatley & I am glad to say i was not disappointed.
The novel is intense & the plot is intriguing as well as a revelation. The book is a classic where it comes to the Thriller/Horror genre. The author has done full justice to the main theme of the novel which is, 'Black magic' or as a more informed person would put it, the dangers of the 'Left Hand'. The novel narrates in a very educat...more
Alan Smith
So, just who is the best writer about supernatural horror ever? H P Lovecraft, Edgar Allen Poe, Ambrose Bierce, Stephen King, Bram Stoker or Guy De Maupassant all might stake a claim as being the most capable of chilling the blood and bringing on instant nightmares, but add another criteria. How many writers can/could mix up a genuinely scary tale of occult horror with an absolute edge-of-the-seat adventure thriller in such a way that you find your heart palpiating while you wonder just what is...more
Seth Skorkowsky
Very enjoyable read. The mix of mythology and occult elements were delightful. Unlike Lovecraft, Dennis Wheatley’s writing was extremely easy to follow and sucked me in.

The second half of the novel began to lose me. Many of the characters were just a little too dense as they were continually shown the supernatural, but didn’t heed warnings or remained frustratingly skeptical. Still, that didn’t ruin my overall enjoyment, but it was annoying.

I will pick up more of Wheatley’s stories.
Stephen
Oh my! What on Earth were people thinking when Dennis Wheatley was so massively popular? The story rattles along like an express train thanks to ridiculous plot twists (such as shall we use your private jet to get to France whilst leaving a dead body in our lounge?. It's racist too, in a very bizarre way. People are judged by their race, such as "He's a bad black" and "You know their temperament".
What a strange thing to read.
Fungii
Modern day (well, 1930's) Satanists in London, England manage to draw a young man into their fold and it is up to his friends, Rex and the Duke, to save him from their wily clutches. Had Dennis Wheatly stuck to this basic premise, he probably would have had a cracking good story. Unfortunately, he had to throw in some astrology, numerology, hypnotism, astral projection, vampires, Egyptian mythology, Catholic dogma and who knows what else into the mix and it doesn't quite come together. Some of i...more
Gisela
Apesar da prosa competente e de ter começado bem, com um mistério/aventura prometedor, o constante dumping de conteúdos ocultistas, esboçados apenas de forma superficial, torna o livro um pouco derivativo.
É a luta clássica entre o Bem (representado pelas pessoas comuns, pertencentes à Luz) e o Mal (representado por Mocata e o seu séquito, um satanista capaz de tudo para obter o poder contido no Talismã de Set).
Sendo que Wheatley é um clássico da literatura ocultista (não só por ter escrito algum...more
David Eastaugh
Rattling good yarn and Dennis Wheatleys most popular book - just re-read it after forty years. A classic thriller of the occult.
Bari
I always remember this book sitting on my Mothers bookshelf in our old house. Sometimes I would pick it up but the cover would freak me out.

I read it recently and thought it was amazing. Creepy and so atmospheric.
Michael Madden
Dennis Wheatley wrote a book called "The Devil And All His Works" and it is the research behind that that makes The Devil Rides Out so believable. It is again Wheatley's attention to detail that shines through, and his knowledge of the occult brings to life things that I do not really understand, which inevitably adds to the fear. The characters appear in several other Wheatley novels, and by the end of this one you feel that you really know them. An author from a bygone age, but well worth read...more
Martyn
A rip roaring yarn of good against evil or moreover a group of European gentry pitted against occultism. Set between the wars this novel is great fun if you don't take it too seriously and definitely to be taken with a pinch of salt (and perhaps a dash of holy water). I do remember seeing seeing a Hammer Horror version of this as a lad, which was actually pretty scary. I didn't realise that this was one of a series...number 6 i believe. Would I read another? ... yes probably, when I'm next in th...more
Pat
I read this as a teenager in the 60's and really enjoyed it, though I think I might find it a little dated now.. hard to say. My Dad was a major Dennis Wheatley fan and owned every single book, bought as soon as they were released. I tried to read some of the historical novels but they were way beyond me as a 14/15yr old, but I did read all the Black Magic books one after the other and scared myself silly!

Hazel
Reread this recently after seeing a bit of the Hammer film, with Christopher Lee. I read several Wheatley novels as a child, but had completely forgotten how rife this one is with racism, sexism, anti-Semitism and middle-class English xenophobia. I imagine Wheatley knew his target audience, but this seems pretty strong stuff to me.

The basic adventure story is mildly diverting, no more.
Simon
Love the "prim and proper" interaction of the characters owing to the age of the book. It moves at a pace and is difficult to put down - the action is pretty believable (to frail hearted like me anyway) in spite of the screen affects we see today. Looking forward to getting into the next book - I'm more informed on the necessary tools of the trade for beating back those demon-types now.
Susan Sloan
Like Crowley narrated by Jeeves, in the best possible way.
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Dennis Yates Wheatley (8 January 1897 – 10 November 1977) [Born: Dennis Yeats Wheatley] was an English author. His prolific output of stylish thrillers and occult novels made him one of the world's best-selling authors in the 1950s and 1960s.

His first book, Three Inquisitive People, was not immediately published; but his first published novel, The Forbidden Territory, was an immediate success when...more
More about Dennis Wheatley...
To the Devil a Daughter (Molly Fountain, #1) (Black Magic, #4) The Haunting of Toby Jugg (Black Magic, #3) The Satanist (Molly Fountain, #2; Black Magic, #6) The Ka of Gifford Hillary (Black Magic, #5) Strange Conflict (Duke de Richleau, #9) (Black Magic, #2)

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“...age-old evil, tireless and vigilant, cloaked from the masses by modern skepticism, yet still a potent force stalking the dark ways of the night.” 4 likes
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