The Good Demon

320p. Abrams/Amulet. Sept. 2018. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781419731273.
Gr 9 Up—Clare has been possessed since she was eight years old. The "demon" is her comfort blanket, her binky, and her home. Clare's mom is under her stepdad's control, and he hates her. And no one in her small town of freaky people pays her any attention. That is, until She takes over her body. But the preacher and his boy, Roy, come and take Her away. Through a loneliness she has never known to a complicated relationship she never thought was possible for her with Roy, Clare searches for a way to get Her back. But the teen may be wishing for more than she's ever dreamed of and more than she is willing to sacrifice. Cajoleas weaves a narrative of dreams, demons, and wishes. Every kid wonders what it would be like to have an imaginary friend, but what if you had a friend that lived inside of you that wasn't so imaginary? Cajoleas poses the question, "Can there be good demons?" Witnessing Clare's relationship with Her, readers will be conflicted in their answer. Even though She fell in love with Clare, the demon manipulates her and lies to her, making her do "evil" things to people she loves and cares about. Clare's development might come a little too late for some, but this quirky tale is thought-provoking.
VERDICT Purchase where horror is popular.

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