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The Demon's Lexicon

(The Demon's Lexicon #1)

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  10,084 ratings  ·  1,324 reviews
Sixteen-year-old Nick and his brother, Alan, are always ready to run. Their father is dead, and their mother is crazy—she screams if Nick gets near her. She’s no help in protecting any of them from the deadly magicians who use demons to work their magic. The magicians want a charm that Nick’s mother stole—and they want it badly enough to kill. Alan is Nick’s partner in dem ...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published June 2nd 2009 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
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Average rating 3.73  · 
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 ·  10,084 ratings  ·  1,324 reviews

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Kat Kennedy
May 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Have you ever been doing something and had a sudden realization that you might just be evil?

And not the wimpy, I-want-to-be-sexy-and-kind-of-emo-looking-evil.

Like this...

I mean REAL evil like this:

the shining

Or this:

[image error]
No! No! Oh the humanity!!!!!

Well, The Demon's Lexicon made me feel like I possibly had no soul.

Which was suprisingly refeshing.

Now there's some discussion in the thread below regarding this author's crossover from Fanfiction to publishing. Despite appearances, I don't actually hav
Dec 23, 2007 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I like this book, but I think I'm prejudiced. I mostly added it to my books so I could look at it and smile in its direction...

(edited because on reflection I cannot be unbiased.)
Wendy Darling
2.5 stars The first chapter in Demon's Lexicon is extremely misleading. The riveting opening scene starts off with two boys bantering in a kitchen until they're suddenly interrupted by an attack. Someone has sent a magical flock of ravens to destroy their home, and Nick and his brother Alan manage to ward them off in an exciting, action-packed scene. During the aftermath, Mae and Jamie, two kids from school that the boys know slightly, show up asking for help with their own terrible problem--Jam ...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Wants to Read More)
Wow. This book really snuck up on me. I wasn't sure at first, because the writing seemed as though a lot had been cut out initially. I didn't think I was getting the whole picture. I honestly think that this book was not written for the YA market, but it ended up as one because of the younger aged characters. I felt as though the author might have been asked to edit some parts out to make it more 'suitable' for younger readers, and I felt that initially. As CS Lewis has expressed, I think that a ...more
Margaret Stohl
Jun 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I did not set out to love this book; the bar was too high. The word Demon itself, to me, is owned by Jonathan Stroud and Cassandra Clare. Even the main character, Nick, was about as grouchy about starring in the story as I was reading it. (I had half a mind to suggest to him that we both go our separate ways except for the inclination that he would probably have said it to me first…) And then we found each other, Nick and I, and though we were both cross, there was the matter of good-natured Ala ...more
Feb 23, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fan fiction fans
Recommended to Annalisa by: Brett
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
I'm not sure I liked Brennan's world of magicians so obsessed with power they barter the lives of innocent victims with demons in exchange for magical powers. Demons as is the biblical sense of rabid creatures who will do anything to enter our world but are so out of control they quickly destroy the bodies they possess. And it isn't regular people turning to satanic ritual but people born this way, as evil magicians willing to sacrifice human life. Plus once a person has been marked by a demon f ...more
Jun 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pretty-good
Although I spent most of the time cursing the male lead Nick for being a fxxking jerkass while I read this book, still the awesome ending is enough to make up for it. Plus the older brother Alan, he really rocks!

But still, ******PLOT SPOILER WARNING******

(view spoiler)

**********END OF SPOILER******

I can see it coming fro
Mar 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
I waited for this book to come out for at least a year, and when I finally got it (tonight!) I started reading it and didn't stop until it was done. It is insanely enthralling.

This is the first paragraph: "The pipe under the sink was leaking again. It wouldn't have been so bad, except that Nick kept his favorite sword under the sink." This is our introduction to Nick Ryves, a sixteen year old who has been on the run from magicians his entire life. He and his older brother Alan (with a crippled
Jul 14, 2009 rated it it was ok
Oh this book. I wanted to like it a lot more than I did. First, the writing was so godawfully bad in parts it made the whole thing a struggle to get through. The main characters were fine, but all other secondary and tertiary characters were so badly drawn as to be characitures of themselves, place holders for the final product the author clearly meant them to be.

The surprise ending was indeed that, a surprise, but even managing to fool me with her plot twist doesn't make the book itself any be
Feb 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Alert: This is a 'read-till-3AM' book. There's the love of brothers and dysfunctional families, crazy fights with swords and knives and guns, and hilarious dialogue that pops up and surprises you. ...more
Jun 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommended to Ash by: Cara
I usually don’t trust books with pouty lipped guys on the cover (No offense guy on the cover. For any other reason I’m sure you'd seem attractive, but right now you’re on a cover and I don’t trust you). My theory has yet to be debunked. It was really hard to finish reading this. I debated just stopping, but I had some guilty conscious issues. Luckily I did eventually get to the end, which was definitely the best part of the book.

Quick Overview: Nick and his brother Alan with their half crazy mo
This book probably isn't going to end up on my all-time favourites shelf, but I did enjoy reading it a lot and am definitely interested in the sequels. It isn’t the strongest in terms of world building, but it definitely is full of suspense, surprising twists and engaging characters. Every one of them actually had a certain something that made him or her stand out. And boy, what an ending. Never ever did I expect something like that. It totally took me by surprise. And that happens rarely. Actua ...more
Nov 14, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Demon’s Lexicon tells the story of 16-year-old half-orphan Nick who is on the run from a circle of evil magicians. He lives with his older brother Alan, who practically had to raise him all by himself due to the fact that 1) their father has been killed by said evil magicians and 2) their mother’s deep dislike of Nick. She resents him and makes it perfectly clear that she has absolutely no love for him. She doesn’t want to see him or talk to him and so she hides out in her room basically 24/ ...more
Oct 02, 2009 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: I would not recommend this book. Interesting premise, terrible execution.
Recommended to E. by: E. S.
I am plodding through this book because I spent money on it. The scenario facing the main characters is at first very, very similar to some others I know and love (namely Sam and Dean Winchester from Supernatural), only this book is set in England and there are occasionally swords.

I figured, hey, cool, let's see how she does with making her book stand apart.

First, let me say that there are some interesting aspects to the book. The dialogue is primarily good and I enjoy the interactions between t
2.5 stars

I was a tad disappointed in this book. I looked at my status updates and I had seriously wanted to put the book in the “time out” corner for a while. Luckily for the book (hard cover copy), my ereader decided to malfunction, so I was stuck finishing The Demon’s Lexicon instead.

The Demon’s Lexicon is the story of two brothers who are constantly moving to get away from the magicians who seem to want something from the brothers or their mother. Herein lies my problem with this book. I was
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star
so I'm not sure exactly what I was expecting but... wow I loved this it was amazing? I liked it way better than unspoken tbh, my faith in srb is affirmed

I've seen people complain about nick's character but it was one of the best things about the book for me -- if I didn't say that I'm even a little tired of excessively kind and noble and morally righteous heroes whose every action is fueled by the Greater Good I'd be a lying liar who lies. I thought srb did an excellent job at balancing his char
Aug 20, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020
For a good two thirds of this book, I was frustrated with it. The world building was almost nonexistent and the main characters seemed to be whining teenagers (ok it’s YA, I should expect that). There were some interesting moments, the goblin market for instance but mostly it was just running from one situation to another. Then it all seemed to end with a rush and a lot of the explanations were really interesting. Perhaps the back story would’ve made a better novel!
Morgan F
Nick Ryves and his crippled older brother, Alan, have been running from magicians their whole lives. Magicians are humans who can control limited amounts power. They get this power from sacrificing innocent people as hosts for demons, who have unimaginable abilities. Alan and Nick's mother used to be an evil magician, and she still owns charm which others would kill to possess. When a brother and sister, Jamie and Mare, come to the Ryves brothers for help, Alan is dead set on taking them in, des ...more
Zoë Marriott
Aug 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sarah Rees Brennan I love you.

When friends of mine raved about your book, I didn't really pay that much attention. I was hip-deep in revisions at the time, and had sworn off new books (being a naturally lazy procrastinator, if I'm faced with a choice between curling up with a book or getting some hard work done, the curling and reading wins every time). Once those revisions were finished, I have to admit that I forgot about the recommendations I'd heard heaped on THE DEMON'S LEXICON. I am sorry.
Sep 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
"Dear Diary,
So today I found out my brother is THIS close to becoming a demon's meat puppet so I tracked down these brothers who I hope will help. One keeps a sword under the sink and the other could shoot a bullseye through the O of an alphabetti spaghetti. I think I want to see them naked. ~Mae" (not actual dialogue)

Sarah Rees Brennan is an author that really knows her way around her characters. The best parts of this book series are in the dialogue scenes. The banter is what makes this serie
Mar 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I lived in utter terror that this wouldn't be as awesome as I wanted it to be, because I am paranoid that way. But it is awesome and it's deep and it's dark and it's moving and it's funny (though not quite as funny as I expected, but it makes up for that by being way more intriguing than the first few chapters might imply).

So, what's it about? I can't tell you, I am sworn to secrecy. Well not really, only about info that hasn't been released yet. Cause the book doesn't come out till the 1st of J
Jul 11, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-books
I didn’t expect to love this book. I thought it would be just okay and perhaps not my type of thing. (I thought the cover was a bit silly) Instead I found myself dropping everything else in order to finish it.

The narrator/protagonist is Nick. He’s not a terribly likeable person. His only interest in life if sword practice. He kills people (evil people who are trying to kill him – but still). He tortures enemies when necessary. He has very little regard for human life and empathy for no one excep
Young adult urban fantasy with teenaged brothers running from evil magicians and demons.

All right, this impressed me. I classified it in the first chapter as 'YA urban fantasy with demons: species generic,' but then the protagonist just kept happening. He's fifteen and a sociopath, not to put too fine a point on it, who would see the whole world burn without a qualm as long as his brother is safe. The close POV on him in all his disfunction, and the emotional nuances he does and doesn't get, is
So, I originally only had a brief, badly written review for this book, because I read it right as I came to GoodReads, and I was still adjusting to everything. That was fine at first, but I'm so far in the minority, and I'm having so much trouble understanding the positive reviews that I think I'm going to have to write that one-star review, just to get my thoughts together.

I think my biggest problem with the book was the focus on the plot twist. There's nothing wrong with a big surprise - it's
Jun 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Shannon, Kathryn
I might as well come out and say it up front: I’m not going to be the least objective about this book or this author. You see, Sarah Rees Brennan AKA Maya is the one who got me hooked on HP fanfiction, slash and more particularly H/D. I’ve enjoyed everything she has ever put up on her lj which I’ve been reading for years now! She’s a gifted storyteller who does brilliantly amazing things as far as characterization is concerned. That’ll do for context.
Her debut novel is marketed as YA and I’m not
Rachel Hartman
Jan 22, 2012 rated it liked it
That's a hard-earned three stars, there. That is to say, the book came back from a deficit. There were several times when I was pretty sure this was going to be a DNF for me. I figured out the twist about halfway through. By the end, though, the brothers' relationship won me over. I'm a sucker for siblings, I guess.

I'll be interested to see whether I like the second book better, now that the big "secret" is out in the open. And I wonder (but of course, we'll never know) whether this book wouldn'
Aug 26, 2009 rated it did not like it
Am I the only one who thinks that all the hype about Sarah Rees Brennan as a real novelist is just that - hype?

Brennan got famous because she is VERY GOOD at parodying things that other writers actually created. Which is awesome and totally entertaining. But where Cassandra Clare proved that her fan fiction was hinting at immense skill, Brennan...Demon's Lexicon was just boring. Her characters are flat. Her stories are predictable. And...honestly, I just found myself wishing that I enjoyed her
Feb 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well.. It took me forever to finish this book but I liked it a lot! But I never had this much trouble to keep reading something that's interesting.

Nick is all kinds of awesome, his brother Alan is a little bit too emo for my taste, but I guess it's normal how protective he feels of Nick.

I can't wait to see what happens between Nick and Mae ^^

It's too damn hot today to come up with a decent review, so this will have to do.
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
these books just make me increasingly insane the more i read them!!!!!
Initial reaction: Review to come when I can find words to describe how much this book swallowed me into the journey, characters and respective conflict. I really enjoyed this and it rather surprised me.

Full review:

And I'm yet again impressed reading another book from Sarah Rees Brennan. I figured since I enjoyed "Unspoken" so much and since it will be some time before the sequel releases, I'd check into her "Demon's Lexicon" series. Reactions of this book were mixed on my friends list on Goodrea
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Elie's Book Club: The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan 1 10 Mar 27, 2014 10:01PM  
Spoilers! (who saw THAT coming?!) 11 175 May 22, 2013 11:11AM  
The Lemon's Lexicon 1 28 Dec 14, 2011 07:56PM  
The Lemon's Lexicon 1 16 Dec 14, 2011 07:54PM  

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Sarah Rees Brennan is Irish and currently lives in Dublin. She's been writing YA books for more than ten years, which is terrifying to contemplate! She hopes you (yes you!) find at least one of them to be the kind of book you remember. ...more

Other books in the series

The Demon's Lexicon (3 books)
  • The Demon's Covenant
  • The Demon's Surrender

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  Mary Roach is a science author who specializes in the bizarre and offbeat. With a body of work ranging from deep-dives on the history of...
11 likes · 3 comments
“Fear's useless. Either something bad happens or it doesn't: If it doesn't, you've wasted time being afraid, and if it does, you've wasted time that you could have spent sharpening your weapons.” 441 likes
“Some magicians are rich, some are famous, some are stupidly good-looking.'

Jamie gave Nick a rather complicated look.

Nick raised an eyebrow. 'Some of us manage to be stupidly good-looking on our own.”
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