The Devil (Jack Taylor, #8)
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The Devil (Jack Taylor #8)

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  496 ratings  ·  67 reviews
America—the land of opportunity, a place where economic prosperity beckons: but not for PI Jack Taylor, who’s just been refused entry. Disappointed and bitter, he thinks that an encounter with an overly friendly stranger in an airport bar is the least of his problems. Except that this stranger seems to knowmuch more than he should about Jack. Jack thinks no more of their m...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published August 31st 2010 by Minotaur Books
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(showing 1-30 of 793)
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Anthony Vacca
For all intents and purposes, this book probably should have sucked pretty hard. A fairly straight-faced PI series suddenly introduces 8 books-in a supernatural element? And by “supernatural element” I mean our barely-functioning PI Jack Taylor goes head-to-head in the streets of Galway with the Infernal One himself. No, the title is anything but metaphorical.

Actually, this book turned out to be a pleasant puff of fresh Gaelic air after the last three ho-hum entries in the never-ending struggle...more
Josh
'I look to you like a guy who does happy?' If a line could sum up Ken Bruen's masterful creation more accurately, I'd like to see it. Jack is back and not much has changed in his vice dependent life. Adding to his ever growing list of failures, rejections, beat downs and misrepresentations is a refused ticket to America. His fresh start thwart before it even begun. Naturally it's smooth sailing down hill with the breeze at his back straight to hell courtesy of the devil himself. While not necess...more
Tony
Bruen, Ken. THE DEVIL. (2010). ***. Wait...There’s almost a novel here. Bruen is the current top-selling author of noir crime fiction from Ireland. He manages to get on the best-seller lists with each succeeding book. This one will probably make it, too, if only for the momentum of his work. His readers will buy it because they think they know what to expect. They will be wrong. This novel features Jack Taylor, an ex Garda, ex-alcoholic, ex-PI. It starts with him trying to board a flight to Amer...more
LJ
First Sentence: I should be in America.

Jack Taylor’s second attempt to leave Ireland ends with Irish customs; his attempt at sobriety ends at the airport bar. The journey he does take is one of a mysterious stranger who seems to know a lot about him, and the death of those who come into Jack’s life. Has the Devil come to Jack in this life rather than waiting for him in the next?

From the first page, and first chapter heading, I remember how much I love Bruen’s voice. You hear and see Ireland in e...more
Ian Mapp
I've missed Bruen... why have I waited so long for the next installment?

The books are easy reading and the story is secondary to the great lines that he writes and the references to literary and musicians that you should check out. I recommend keeping a pad next to you to take down the references... they are almost always worth checking out.

Noone writes about drinking like Bruen. After the first description of Jack Taylor hitting the bar for a pint of black and a double jay, it makes you want to...more
Kathy Davie
The Chronology of the Series
Eighth in the Jack Taylor suspense-mystery series set in Galway, Ireland involving an ex-Garda turned private investigator.

The Story
The economy is so far down the tubes in Ireland with unemployment and anger over the non-nationals snagging all the aid and free medical for which the locals don't qualify skyrocketing and who should show up to ensure it all goes to the dogs…at least, those that manage to keep their heads. The Devil. Mr. K. Seems he's pissed off at Jack f...more
Sam Sattler
Ken Bruen is one of the true masters of noir. The man’s writing style, some kind of cross between outright poetry and weirdly formatted prose, is a nice visual representation of the genre – and private detective Jack Taylor is the perfect noir character. It just does not get any darker than Jack Taylor.

As this eighth novel of the series begins, Jack is disappointed (but not surprised) to learn that he has been denied passage to the States because of his past run-ins with the law. Always moody, t...more
K.A. Laity
That’s the thing with Bruen novels, you can’t just read one. An unholy trinity I offer this week, ending with perhaps the oddest of the three. From the brutal realism yer man from Galway dips a toe into the dark swirling waters of magical brutal realism.

I really can’t get enough of Jack Taylor; Bruen keeps chipping off bits of him — knocking his teeth out, breaking his bones with a hurley stick, and of course wasting his flesh with a variety of drugs, whiskey and the good old black gold, Guinnes...more
Andrea
I love everything by Ken Bruen. He strikes a deep chord with me, I love the style, the dark humour, the stubborn, Jameson-infused and literate characters, and I loved the entrance of the devil himself. So some of his books work better than others, but I love all of them, making me the worst possible commentator, I apologise for my own sappiness.

But one last thing...I also loved that list of writers he drops, I love writers that honour other writers, and I'm glad to see Gary Phillips make the li...more
Jmrathbone
Jack Taylor meets the Devil. The Devil appears with long golden hair, or he is bald, and there are horrific murders with mutilation of the victims and also of dogs. Jack Taylor pursues the Devil and after each stop he makes in his investigation something very evil happens. Somehow this just doesn’t work for me. The whole plot line seemed pointless. As another reviewer said “at least it is brief”.
Minty McBunny
This book is much better than it has a right to be. I figured it was going to be another disappointing entry into the series like the previous book, I was highly skeptical that a supernatural element could be introduced with anything but eye rolling implausibility.

Was I wrong?

Was I *#€^.

My only complaint us that Bruen seems to no longer feel the need to wax poetic about Jack's drinking. Previous books were heartbreaking poetry of addiction/drunkenness/hangovers and now it's just kind of glosse...more
A. Mary Murphy
Jack Taylor's world is the underbelly, no doubt, moving among the detritus of society, including Taylor himself. Bruen explores a lot of darkness in this series, but in this one, he casts the Devil himself, and the treatment gets too literal for me. A metaphorical figure of the arch demon would have suited better, for me at least, a figure we're left thinking could be Satan. Here, the guy shows up, does a lot of stuff to people just because he wants to and he can, and then he moves along, surfac...more
David Peters
Typically I try to avoid reading a book from a series out of order, especially if the series is new to me. I made an exception in this case because Ken Bruen is an exceptional author rarely seen in my library. The reason I will read Ken Bruen every chance I get is simple; he is simply one of the best dialogue writers I have ever read. The conversational tome of his books are phenomenal, the pages just fly by. I feel pretentious praising his writing style, but the whole plot is driven completely...more
Nick
What did I just read? I love Ken Bruen and the way he writes the Jack Taylor books. The cadence of the storytelling, the anguish, the pain, the drinking, the occasional glimmers of hope and redemption. And in The Devil all of these things are there, however, what's new is the introduction of the supernatural, the devil himself.

If there's one thing that keeps me coming back to crime novels it's the reality of the stories that are told. So looking back on this book I'm not sure if what I read is...more
Sebastian
"So, the Devil is hanging out in airports, looking for poor bastards who get refused entry to America?"

When I started reading this book and realized that Bruen had decided to introduce the character of the Devil into the story I tried not to like it. The main reason for this was that it was taking the plot to a completely different place, incorporating fantastic elements in it. I swear I was ready not to like it, ready to take the smallest defects I could find and harp in them. But then it happe...more
Jennifer
This was the Jack Taylor novel on the library shelf when I went looking. I might have done better to leave it there. To jump ahead to this departure without journeying through all the preceding instalments after The Guards (which I very much enjoyed) didn't really work. It may never have done, but I'm comparing with my experience of reading Christopher Brookmyre's own foray into the demonic Pandemonium. That passed muster... but not only had I read a lot more of Brookmyre's preceding novels but...more
S.D.
Jack Taylor is a sad sack one can’t help but love. He is a former member of the Irish Guard who refuses to give up the Guard coat, a recovering alcoholic who seems to only be able to stay clean for six months, and a sometime P.I. whose acerbic rhetoric is cutting but funny as hell. Speaking of hell, Taylor’s latest nemesis appears to be the devil himself. When Jack is refused entrance to the U.S. because of a prior arrest, he seeks solace at the airport bar. A man known only as Curt/Kurt tries t...more
Tim Niland
When Jack Taylor is refused entry onto an airplane bound for America he drowns his sorrows with alcohol and Xanax at the airport bar. There he meets the most peculiar gentleman, one who seems to know an awful lot about him and gives him the creeps. Returning to Galway with his tail between his legs, Jack reluctantly returns to his gig as a half-assed private investigator, only this time, there's a catch: everyone he talks to is turning up dead, and the man from the airport seems to be everywhere...more
Jeff
Ken Bruen is an amazing writer. This one I don't know was going on. There is no mystery, really, which is fine. Then the Devil shows up and gets angry about a bunch of Jack Taylor's old cases. Then the devil starts killing anyone Jack talks to. Then Jack kills the devil. Then the devil shows up somewhere else quoting Rolling Stones lyrics. Add in some heavy drinking, Xanax, and a return to smoking, diatribes about non-nationals and repeat. I truly love Ken bruen's writing, and will read anything...more
Robert Intriago
Taylor is full of contradictions and that is why he is so likeable even when he is dopped up. Bruen's character hates priest but loves the church, loves fairness but is not afraid to use violence to achieve it and loves Ireland but wants to leave it for America. I think this is one of Bruen's best and I love his comments about the recession in Ireland, politician and foreigners.

I agree that the story is far fetched in spots but I love the reality in between. I think we all fight our demons and...more
Monica
Once you start reading the first Jack Taylor book...you just simply can't stop! I have absolutely loved this series by Ken Bruen. Bruen has pulled Jack down in almost every way possible...drinking, drugs, a limp, a hearing aid, and the uncanny ability to make some really bad life choices...but still Jack keeps on getting right back up and moving forward. This eighth book in the series is a bit different from the previous seven. You still have Jack being Jack in all his glory...cynical, crass, ho...more
James Newman

Cilpped sentences... Verb is king.

Fuck descriptions, no fat on the meat.

Don't want to be told how character is feeling,

all the time

Show me.

Show me with as few words as possible. I have no time for metaphor. No time for long descriptions. I want crime noir and I want it now.

'The Devil' might or might not be real. Real life crime flirts with the supernatural. In Bruen's novel we aren't quite sure. Where are we going here?

We are going to hell,

or maybe not.

All we we are sure of is a writer at the t...more
Wendy
What can I say? The story had me on the edge of my seat. And, as if that wasn't enough, the writing style was incredibly entertaining. Sometimes I felt as if I was reading poetry. But really cool and inspired poetry, not the dry, find me a rope so I can hang myself if I have to read one more line, kind. Bruen is not an author I have read before. But based on this gem, I'd give his other books a try. Love all the main characters and the minor ones too. Love the Irish detective lingo. Plus, I foun...more
Maddy
PROTAGONIST: Jack Taylor, PI
SETTING: Galway, Ireland
SERIES: #8 of 8
RATING: 2.75
WHY: Jack Taylor is off to America, but turned back by immigration at the airport in Ireland. He goes to the bar, where he meets "Kurt". As it turns out, Kurt is actually the devil in human form, who messes up his life and kills off some of the people he associates with. I guess I am just too literal – the premise did not work for me. I know it’s supposed to be an allegory, but I couldn’t buy into it. Meanwhile, it i...more
Paul Greenberg
A clean gun is like prayer- it might not do the job, but you're en route.
John Bartlett
This was the first Jack Taylor novel I've read and I was immediately captivated by his character.
He's very believable as a wounded hero and I like his sardonic wit.
However, when the story moved into the supernatural it lost me.
I don't think the supernatural 'devil' was believable.
There's enough real evil in crime and crime novels and I thought it was a cop-out to resort to a religious, mystic sort of devil.
But nevertheless I do look forward to reading more Ken Bruen for his style and hope the st...more
Mohammed
Great writing,fine prose style,authentic portrayal of Galway and the people in it as i have come to expect from Bruen in this series. The pitch black humour is also strong point that makes you endure the story of the haunted Jack Taylor, without the black humour that makes you laugh at times it would be too depressing, too real.

I dont know what to think about the end, the story, the villain of The Devil though, weird choice of story.
Denis Collins
As always Ken Bruen's Jack Taylor is great to read, two reading sessions at most and you fly through them. I enjoyed reading this one a lot but scored it at four stars because the story solution was not particularly inventive, Jack just shoots th bad guy,. No there is a little more to it than that but not much more. So delighted to have another to read not as satisfied as I was with some of the previous books in the series.
BJ
This is the latest of Bruen's Jack Taylor series, and it is my least favorite. The Devil himself is after Jack, and this supernatural element is not a good fit for a previously gritty and realistic mystery/thriller series. I was really looking forward to this book, but now I'm not so sure about the next one--if there is a next one. I can't imagine another antagonist for Jack after he has faced Satan.
Jason
Love Ken Bruen. Bruen's prose is magical, and his humor second to none. Jack is the hopeless romantic ground down to a nub, and every single book Bruen presses him harder into the grindstone. The Jack Taylor books are like a candy bar with a razor blade. You love Jack and want to hate Bruen for the terrible things he does to him, but the writing is just too sweet. Mystery fiction at it's best.
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Ken Bruen, born in Galway in 1951, is the author of The Guards (2001), the highly acclaimed first Jack Taylor novel. He spent twenty-five years as an English teacher in Africa, Japan, S.E. Asia and South America. His novel Her Last Call to Louis Mac Niece (1997) is in production for Pilgrim Pictures, his "White Trilogy" has been bought by Channel 4, and The Guards is to be filmed in Ireland by De...more
More about Ken Bruen...
The Guards (Jack Taylor, #1) The Killing Of The Tinkers (Jack Taylor, #2) The Magdalen Martyrs (Jack Taylor, #3) The Dramatist (Jack Taylor, #4) Priest (Jack Taylor, #5)

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