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Known Devil (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation, #3)
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Known Devil (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation #3)

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3.85  ·  Rating Details ·  531 Ratings  ·  65 Reviews
“My name’s Markowski. I carry a badge. Also, a crucifix, some wooden stakes, a big vial of holy water, and a 9mm Beretta loaded with silver bullets.

“A new supernatural gang is intent on invading Scranton and it looks like I’m going to have to work with the current mob to prevent a demonic gang war.

“If there’s one thing I hate more than living with supernatural scumbags, it
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Paperback, 375 pages
Published January 28th 2014 by Angry Robot (first published August 1st 2013)
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Joseph Don't know about #4, I hope there is one too, but regarding other great reads of Guistainis's, I recommend checking out his Quincy Morris series,…moreDon't know about #4, I hope there is one too, but regarding other great reads of Guistainis's, I recommend checking out his Quincy Morris series, first book is "Black Magic Woman."(less)

Community Reviews

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Mr. Matt
Jul 05, 2014 Mr. Matt rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy-urban, 2014
Known Devil is the third book in the Occult Crimes series. It follows Stan Markowski, a jaded detective as he and his partner, Karl, solve crimes involving the supernatural community. I like this little series for a couple of reasons:

First, unlike many Urban Fantasy books (see: Dresden, Harry and O'Sullivan, Atticus), the fate of the world/universe/reality are never at risk. Nope. Stan and his partner are simply trying to keep the streets safe for ordinary humans and supes (vampires, werewolves,
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Carol.
Jul 22, 2014 Carol. rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: fans of pulp noir and urban fantasy
With Hard Dark, I had the impression Gustainis was having fun. Enjoying the hell out of himself, in fact, and the enthusiasm translated to an entertaining read. This time, the writing feels forced, rote instead of fun. World-building, characterization and writing all left me left me wishing I had picked up my academic reading instead.

The third installment in the Occult Crimes Unit series begins in a local diner where Detective Sergeant Stan Markowski and his partner, Karl Renfer, are having a co
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Ami
3.5 stars

I loved and enjoyed it almost throughout UNTIL the resolution/ending. Let me explained that one later. In the meantime, I though the whole addictive substance for supernatural beings, the vampire gang wars, terrorist bombing, and the whole Patriot Party with their bigot agenda, and someone keep saving Stan's life.

It was really interesting and I enjoyed every single twists that were thrown my way. A couple of them even made my eyes wide in shock ((view spoiler)
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Kdawg91
Dec 09, 2013 Kdawg91 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have never read this series, but I requested it on netgalley and then like a goof realized I hadn't read the first parts of the series. HOWEVER, this book rocked, I loved every page, I loved that the fantasy in the world was so interwoven that it seemed almost commonplace, making the book more of a standard crime novel than anything else.


It kicked all kinds of ass in my opinion and I promptly bought the other books of the series. Go read it, you will dig it.

Elisa
Sep 23, 2016 Elisa rated it really liked it
Loving these books, dark, ridiculous, crazy, stretching ethics to get the job done, wild women...
Super fun stuff if you don't mind folks getting blown up and stuff.
William
*3.5 Stars*

*Note – I was given a copy of this novel for the purpose of reviewing it.

Normally, I don't give a synopsis of a novel in a review. Publishers and authors do well enough telling what a story's about (or at least what they wish it was about). In this case, a description is warranted because what is provided, while unique in it's brevity and format, isn't enough to sustain a review.

So, a quick breakdown: Paranormal beings (vampires, werewolves, ghouls) have been a known commodity in
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Charles
Jan 17, 2014 Charles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Known Devil is by far one of the best occult fantasy stories that I have read to date. I enjoy Dresden with his deadpan snarky attitude, and his approach to fighting and dealing with being a wizard and a detective. Markowski trumps that with Known Devil.
Reading this is like a new millennium version of the old Noir films. Told in the first person point of view of the Detective Sergeant from the Occult Division of the Scranton Police Department, this novel has all the hallmarks of the classic dete
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Tammy
3.5/5 stars. With every book in this series the stakes rise. Not in the old joke about D&D way where suddenly everyone in your group is a god, no, because Stan Markowski is still just Stan, a human cop in a supernatural world. But in the way where the stakes have to do with Stan and his beliefs and actions.

With help from his vampire partner Karl, official department witch Rachel, and with the support of his daughter and department, Stan uncovers a conspiracy that cause him to make a very di
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Meggie
The third book in Occult Crimes Unit was well developed and written, I admit I was hooked from the beginning till the end, but some holes stayed unanswered. For example the new drug problem in their city. Did the white witches succeed or not, we didn't get an answer to that at the end. But in overall it was an enjoyable, well written storyline full of humor and sarcasm. Good work by this author!
Mieneke
Feb 01, 2014 Mieneke rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, crime, 2014
In 2012 I developed a taste for supernatural police procedurals, when I read Scott Sigler's Nocturnal and Ben Aaronovitch's Rivers of London and Justin Gustainis' Evil Dark was the one that confirmed that these sorts of books were really my thing. After finishing Evil Dark I was really looking forward to reading the next instalment in the Haunted Scranton series and, after two years, this weekend I finally got to return to Scranton and Detective Sergeant Markowski and friends. Known Devil ...more
Stephanie
Feb 24, 2014 Stephanie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
ORIGINAL POST: http://fangswandsandfairydust.com/201...

If you enjoy this review please come by the blog to see this reveiw and many others!

KNOWN DEVIL: Truth, Humor and Politics

E-Galley provided by publisher via Net Galley for review. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as needed.


You know when you wonder about what’s happening with someone and then suddenly you hear from them a couple of days later? That’s how I learned about Justin’s new book in h
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Scott T.
Mar 27, 2014 Scott T. rated it really liked it
Full disclosure: I read this from an advanced copy.

Once I got past the elves in the first paragraph (elves as bad guys, really?) I enjoyed Known Devil immensely. And don’t worry, the elves segue into far more fearsome creatures.

The hero is a hard boiled, human cop-detective (say that three times fast.) Stan Markowski works for the Scranton, Pennsylvania police department. His partner is Karl Renfer, a vampire. The book opens with the detectives having a coffee break inside Jerry’s Diner when two
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Mayra
Feb 01, 2014 Mayra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Known Devil is the third instalment in Gustainis’ Occult Crime Unit urban fantasy series. Though I had not read the first two books, this one was completely stand-alone and didn’t make me feel I was missing anything. I have, however, read other books from Gustainis in the past (Evil Ways, Black Magic Woman and Sympathy for the Devil), and thoroughly enjoyed them. He is a fabulous writer.

In this exciting new series, Detective Sergeant Stanley Markowski of the Scranton PD’s Occult Crimes Unit, and
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Jeff Dick
Jan 16, 2014 Jeff Dick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: angryrobot
A Fresh Take on a Favourite Genre


I have to admit that I was a little hesitant to read this. I typically don’t jump in part way through a series. More importantly, I have read a lot of supernatural crime in the past year and didn’t want something that would feel stale. I was, however, jonesing for something fresh in the genre.

Achievement unlocked.

Known Devil brings something new to a genre that I have come to love. Justin Gustainis has taken well-worn supernatural tropes (vampires, werewolves, wi
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Van (Short & Sweet Reviews)
4 1/2 Stars

*Disclosure: I received a review copy from the publisher/author in exchange for a honest review.

I haven’t read the first two Occult Crime Unit Investigation novels, but these books don’t need to be read in order as Known Devil can be read as a standalone. This is a great Urban Fantasy and has one of my favorite aspects…police procedural with a touch of supernatural/paranormal and magic.
Known Devil opens up with Detective Markowski and Renfer at a diner on break when two elves come in
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Alisha
May 17, 2014 Alisha rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
I highly recommend this novel.

Known Devil sent Sergeant Markowski and his undead partner Karl Renfer on a hell of a ride, pun intended. Markowski’s ultimate goal is to keep the town of Scranton safe from a variety of supernatural creatures ranging from vampires and werewolves, to pixies and ogres, witches and demons, and a butt load more nasty creatures.

Book three of his Occult Crimes Unit Investigations series, Gustainis’ protagonist focuses on three main groups: vampires, elves, and the Patrio
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Alisha
Mar 03, 2014 Alisha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I highly recommend this novel.

Known Devil sent Sergeant Markowski and his undead partner Karl Renfer on a hell of a ride, pun intended. Markowski’s ultimate goal is to keep the town of Scranton safe from a variety of supernatural creatures ranging from vampires and werewolves, to pixies and ogres, witches and demons, and a butt load more nasty creatures.

Book three of his Occult Crimes Unit Investigations series, Gustainis’ protagonist focuses on three main groups: vampires, elves, and the Patrio
...more
Lelia Taylor
Feb 06, 2014 Lelia Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: full-reviews
Mix some elves, vampires, goblins and werewolves; add turf wars among the vampire fangsters, sleazy politics and drug-addicted supes (supernaturals); toss with a human police detective and his vamp partner and what do you get? Why, impending chaos in the streets of Scranton, of course!

Stan Markowski and his partner, Karl Renfer, have been my favorite pair of crossgenre detectives since I read Hard Spell, first in the Occult Crimes Unit series, in 2011. My enjoyment continued with the second book
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Diane
Mar 01, 2014 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the third book in the Occult Crimes Unit Series, and it is definitely my favorite so far. Once again Scranton is up to its eyeballs in supernatural crime and intrigue. Up until now, the only supernatural creatures who were affected by drugs were goblins, who can get hooked on meth. Now there is a new drug in Stan Markowski's beloved town, and it seems to affect all supes. Typical to these books, there are a few other problems in Scranton -- namely an apparent war between vampire mafia fa ...more
Melissa
Jun 04, 2013 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Full Disclosure: I got a review copy from the author. That said, I asked for the review copy when they were offered because I had been waiting for this book for MONTHS - ever since I read the first one. Then the second. Also, having read the ebook copy, I'm definitely getting a hard copy to go on my shelf, too.

I really love the world building that Gustainis has done here - the little details make it all come alive. The names of the cars - Stephen King as Occult True Crime writer... Nixon as (po
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Star
Jan 07, 2014 Star rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
KNOWN DEVIL is the third book in the Occult Crimes Unit Investigation series featuring Detectives Stan Markowski and Karl Renfer. Set in a world similar, but very different, from our own Markowski has to deal with a new threat to Scranton and the supes who live there. There is a new drug, Hemoglobin Plus (aka Slide), hitting the streets which creates addicts across species lines. This is something which has been unheard of before and is evidentiary of a bigger issue for the residents of Scranton ...more
Kelly
Jan 20, 2014 Kelly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I'm going to apply the phrase "a rollicking good time" to this series. It's just... fun. Dark and bloody, yeah. But fun.

I'm not going to lie, some of the things that Markowski initiates this time around worry me a bit. How far can you bend the rules before it begins to affect you? While I understand why he did some of the things he did (and how his dealings with the supernaturals sometimes lead to things that are better left covered up), once you cross a line, it can be easy to cross it
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Sheila
In Scranton, USA, fangsters are killing each other, Stephen King is a “true-crime writer,” and not selling blood in a bar doesn’t mean you're prejudiced against “supes”; it might just be “some kind of religious thing.” Still, the undead daughter will warm her cup in the microwave while Dad eats breakfast before joining the night shift at the precinct.

You could start this series anywhere and still get hooked. Backstory is minimal and informative, told in the laconic, self-deprecating voice of a w
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Jane Mercer
Feb 28, 2014 Jane Mercer rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-books
This was a Goodreads Giveaway and my first positive one I loved this book it's an urban fantasy cop story. The lead character Stan Makowski (and I thought Warshawski was bad) is a cop with a vampire partner and a vampire daughter, in a modern world were supernatural beings came to the notice of humans half way through the last century.
It's number 3 in the series which means I got to get the first 2 as he is responsible for both his daughter and his partner being turned and I'm sure there's more
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Jeff
Nov 27, 2013 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
This is the third book in the series that I consider to be one of the better designed urban fantasy worlds. I say this for the simple reason that if you took the fantasy out of the book, it could easily be a script for a fairly exciting police procedural TV show. The blurbs comparing it to Dragnet are right on the money.

The Good

The protagonist reminds me of my favourite L&O police officer, Lenny Briscoe (as portrayed by the late Jerry Orbach)- a tough no-nonsense police detective who is lo
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Maxine
Feb 07, 2014 Maxine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Detective Sergeant Stanley Markowski of Scranton PD is having a nice quiet lunch with his partner and first vampire cop, Karl Renfer, when two elves attempt to rob the joint. They’re both high on some drug and need money to buy more. Thing is, though, everyone knows supes, as Supernatural creature are known colloquially, aren’t affected by drugs…until now. As if this isn’t bad enough, at the same time this new drug has hit the streets, a war is beginning between competing crime syndicates and a ...more
PopcornReads
What better combination than hard-boiled, old-school police detectives confronted with paranormal creatures of the criminal persuasion? That’s what I thought when I discovered Justin Gustainis’ Occult Crimes Unit Investigation series. I knew it would either be a complete disaster or one hell of a good read. Thankfully I quickly discovered it was one hell of a good read! That first book was Hard Spell, followed by Evil Dark. I devoured both of them and could hardly wait for more! Known Devil, Boo ...more
Willa
Dec 09, 2013 Willa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2013, reviewed
Stan Markowski is a Scranton cop who carries a gun loaded with silver bullets, has a vampire partner, and a vampire daughter, who was turned by said partner. The police station has a resident witch, the local rock band is fronted by a siren, and the elves are high on drugs. Just another typical police procedural . . .

There's a turf war in Scranton between two warring factions. The local vampfather (yes, the Mafia is run by vampires now) is trying to keep hold of the situation, but vampires from
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Ken
Jul 15, 2014 Ken rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Known Devil" is the third book in Gustainis' Occult Crimes Unit Investigation series.

Amid a war between crime families and the questionable motives of an upstart political party, a new, highly addictive drug is hitting the streets and the ramifications of its addictive nature are frightening. Detective Stan Markowski and his partner Karl Renfer have to resort to means they never before considered in order to prevent things from spiraling beyond law enforcement control.

While I did enjoy this bo
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Henry Lazarus
Justin Gustainis has a third police procedural set in a version of our world world where all the mythical creatures exist. Stan Markowski is a cop in the Occult Crimes Unit. His partner. Karl Renfer and his daughter are both vampires as are many of the gang bosses. Known Devil (ebook from Angry Robot) starts when two drug addicted elves try to rob the diner where Markowski and Renfer are eating. Except there are no drugs that effect the supernatural creatures. It seems a new gang is moving in to ...more
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Justin Gustainis was born in Northeast Pennsylvania in 1951. He attended college at the University of Scranton, a Jesuit university that figures prominently in several of his writings.

After earning both Bachelor's and Master's degrees, he was commissioned a Lieutenant in the U. S. Army.

Mr. Gustainis currently lives in Plattsburgh, New York. He is a Professor of Communication at Plattsburgh State U
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More about Justin Gustainis...

Other Books in the Series

Occult Crimes Unit Investigation (3 books)
  • Hard Spell (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation #1)
  • Evil Dark (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation, #2)

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