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The Diabolist by Layton Green

The Diabolist (2013)

by Layton Green

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397292,072 (3.36)1



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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
There is more action and suspense and less yakking this time as the two men fight diabolists who worship, not on the grudge holding fallen angel of Christianity, but Ahriman, the Zoroastrian god of darkness, equal of the god of light. The inevitable exposition centers around the different types of Satanic cults, an interesting topic. A scary, tense read. ( )
  Coach_of_Alva | Nov 23, 2014 |
I’ve enjoyed this series from the very beginning. The combination of religious studies, private detectives, and international intrigue suck me in every time. This latest entry in the series does not fail to deliver, bringing once again the perfect combination of religious philosophy, mystery, and private detective intrigue.

This entry brings us back to the more mystical origins of the series. Rather than biomedicine as in the second book, what’s involved here is ancient occultism and what may or may not be magic tricks. I was happy to see this occult mysticism represented in the developed world this time, pointing out that it’s not just surviving in developing countries in modern times. The actual religion of Satanism is well explained and given room for both good-hearted followers and evil fanatics, just as may be seen in every religion. Green keeps an even hand when writing about religion, even when writing about Satanism, and that’s to be commended. A drop of mysticism is provided, and it’s left up to the reader to decide if it was science or magic ultimately responsible for the mysterious occurrences, which is ideal for this type of book.

The entwining of Viktor’s backstory with the mystery was well-done, and it was certainly time for the reader to learn more about Viktor. Unfortunately, I must say that Viktor’s backstory made me dislike him more than I had previously, but it certainly also helps form him into a more well-rounded character. There’s a delightful femme fatale, enshrouded in both beauty and mystery. Her ending, however, did feel a bit abrupt. Dominic goes very quickly from one opinion of her to another, and not enough known, factual information is provided for the reader to keep up with this. On the other hand, the ending was surprising and also made logical sense, and it also put the main characters in a frightful level of mortal danger. Exactly the kind of ending one looks for in this type of book.

Overall, the third entry in the series continues to deliver the private detective exploration of moral and mystical gray areas. Those who enjoyed the first entry in the series more than the second will be happy to see the return to the mysticism found in the first book. Those who enjoyed the science of the second will be glad to see the science of magic covered extensively in this entry. Recommended to fans of the series to pick it up as soon as possible.

Check out my full review: http://wp.me/pp7vL-19s ( )
  gaialover | Sep 6, 2014 |
This review first appeared on my blog: http://www.knittingandsundries.com/2013/06/6242013-diabolist-by-layton-green-boo...

The Dominic Grey series has been picked up by Amazon's Thomas and Mercer imprint, which goes to show, yet again, that if your book is good enough, even if you start out self-publishing, someone is going to notice!

In this third-in-series novel, the reader travels with Dominic Grey (our tough guy) and Victor Radek (our absinthe-addicted cult phenomenolist) from San Francisco to England to Paris and Italy on the trail of a killer whose victims are leaders of so-called "black cults".

In this intelligent thriller, we come across great thinking points on Satan, Lucifer, and the origin of evil even as we follow our main characters on their journeys (most of the time they are on separate paths as they follow various leads).

We may not feel too sorry for the victims, but whoever is killing them has to be even worse. Intrigue, betrayal, deception, kidnapping, truly evil villains and a mysterious beautiful woman who keeps appearing (and then disappearing) - what more could a thriller offer? Oh! Danger! There's plenty of that in this title as well.

Although this is a series, the author does a great job of filling in background info which means that you don't have to read the previous two titles to appreciate this one (but I DO recommend them!). In my review of the first novel, The Summoner, I stated: "I'm hoping to see a lot more of one of the secondary characters, Victor Radek, who is interesting in his own right." - and in this novel, Victor definitely comes into his own.

One thing that distinguishes this series from many other thrillers that I definitely appreciate is the character development. There's not just swashbuckling, knuckle-clenching action, you learn enough about the protagonists and their backgrounds to make you care about what happens to them.


He didn't know what was more disturbing: being helped by a beautiful girl who kept disappearing into thin air, being chased by a pack of bloodthirsty Satanists who knew his name, or taking a plane to London in pursuite of a mysterious figure who terrified both the bloodthirsty Satanists and the girl.

Writing: 4 out of 5 stars
Plot: 4 out of 5 stars
Characters: 4 out of 5 stars
Reading Immersion: 4 out 5 stars

BOOK RATING: 4 out of 5 stars

Sensitive Reader: One dream sex scene and some brief scenes of violence. ( )
  jewelknits | Jun 26, 2013 |
I’m not at all surprised that Green has been picked up by Amazon’s publishing imprint, Thomas and Mercer. I regarded both The Summoner and The Egyptian as unique and exciting thrillers and I am glad the author has gained recognition for his work.

The Diabolist is the third cleverly crafted novel in the series featuring Dominic Grey and Viktor Radek. In this installment, the investigator and the renowned phenomenologist are convinced that a series of bizarre murders of the worlds religious leaders are the work of a charismatic prophet preaching for a new age. As Dominic attempts to infiltrate the upper echelons of the international cult, Viktor works to unravel the chilling end game planned by the ghost from his past.

Fast paced and action packed The Diabolist is an intelligent psychological thriller. Moving from San Francisco, to the catacombs of Paris, and between the streets of London and a hidden monastery in Sicily, Radek and Grey need to sort fact from fiction, truth from illusion in order to prevent further murders and expose the mastermind of a plot to destabilise organised religion.

A larger question in the novel addresses the nature of faith and how the concept of good and evil is defined within it. The focus on darker occult practices might disturb some readers but it is where faith, science and the inexplicable intersect that interests the author and his protagonists.

Though you could read The Diabolist as a stand alone, familiarity with Radek and Grey strengthen the appeal of this novel. Central to the character development of both men is the way in which their beliefs are challenged by the events that take place.

I liked having the opportunity to learn more about the enigmatic Radek in this installment. Radek’s cool, academic persona is rattled by the confrontation with an old friend, now enemy, triggering a personal and professional crisis. The troubled past of the absinthe-drinking professor reveals his motivation for his study of the world’s belief systems, and his particular interest in unexplained phenomena.

As with the earlier books in the series, this novel is characterised by an original, complex, and meticulously researched plot and intriguingly flawed characters. The Diabolist is a provocative thriller that challenges a simple world view and I am looking forward to the next installment. ( )
  shelleyraec | Jun 16, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Dominic Grey and Viktor Radek aren’t your typical private eyes. They specialize in mysteries involving religious cults. Here, Interpol comes calling with a case: in Paris and San Francisco, leaders of satanic cults have been murdered. Grey and Radek soon zero in on Simon Azar, leader of the Order of New Enlightenment, a new and increasingly influential cult supposedly based in London, but Azar seems to be keeping a lot of details about the cult secret (including the location of its new headquarters), and it’s difficult to nail Azar for the murders—even when Grey’s and Radek’s own lives become seriously in jeopardy. This, the third Grey-Radek novel, is a well-crafted and exciting thriller with a pair of interesting protagonists (Grey, the ex-Marine and juju master; Radek, the expert in cults and religious phenomenology) and a charismatic villain who makes our skin crawl.
added by LaytonGreen | editBooklist (May 13, 2013)
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Satan's successes are the greatest when he appears with the name of God on his lips.

—Mahatma Gandhi
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They called themselves the House of Lucifer.
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