Making the ultimate deal
In a sort of modern retelling of the Faustian myth that legendary blues guitarist Robert Johnson achieved his success by selling his soul to the devil at the crossroads, Devil and the Bluebird follows the winding and heart-wrenching path of one young girl who’s trying to save her sister’s soul.
Blue Riley is willing to give up anything to find her missing older sister, Cass, who left to chase dreams of musical fame not long after their mother died of cancer. Blue finds the devil down at the nearby crossroads and bargains her soul to try to save her sister’s. She gives up her voice as collateral and gets only six months and a pair of vaguely magical boots in exchange.
Throughout her journey to find Cass, Blue meets all sorts of gifted and seedy characters. And as the devil changes the terms of their deal, she must re-evaluate her understanding of good and evil, all while hoping that a bluebird has a chance in hell of defeating the devil.
Debut author Jennifer Mason-Black’s prose is fittingly lyrical, and her narrative always takes the most devilish of turns.
Justin Barisich is a freelancer, satirist, poet and performer living in Atlanta. More of his writing can be found at littlewritingman.com.
This article was originally published in the June 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.