Title: Bedeviled: Daddy's Little Angel
Author: Shani Petroff
Published: Grosset & Dunlap, August 25, 2009
Cover Score: A
Overall Grade: A-
Angel Garrett's eighth-grade year is not going too well. Shunned by the popular crowd and banned from going to the hottest concert of the year by her aura-reading mother, Angel might as well be the class's biggest social reject. But it's about to get worse, especially when she discovers that her dad isn't dead on her thirteenth birthday. Not only that, he's the devil-- literally. As in, horns, pitchfork, evil. All he wants is to be part of her life, and in exchange he can give Angel anything: instant popularity, a date with her longtime crush, Cole Daniels, the cutest new clothes. But Angel refuses to accept him until he stops being, well, so evil. And if her dad's the devil, then does that mean that Angel is evil, too?
My thoughts: Wow! This book was an impressive, funny, and quick debut. From page one, I was hooked. I loved how creative the author was in creating the plot. I mean, a devil dad? It was so much fun to read.
The characters were awesome, especially Lou Cipher (get it?), Angel's dad/devil. He was so well developed, and I couldn't help but sympathize for him. Courtney, the resident mean girl, was just so awful and therefore so much fun to hate. Of course, Angel herself was an awesome character, even though she could be a bit whiny sometimes. I loved the first-person narration, it gave me a great idea of Angel's voice and I felt like she was a real person. So good job there, Shani!
The plot was simple and easy to follow, and smoothly constructed so that it was a quick, light read. I loved all of the twists and turns in the storyline, and it felt like Ms. Petroff really new what she was talking about, like she was writing about her own eighth-grade experience!
It was hard to tell where the climax was, and it felt like, to me, that there was a lot of leadup but not a lot of explanation in the end, which I wish there had been more of. It almost felt a bit abrupt at the very end.
Overall, I would definitely recommend this to middle-grade girls. A clever, fun, and enthralling read, Bedeviled was a great start to a very cool series, plus it had a very cute, appealing cover! I can't wait to read the second book!
Must-Read! Check it Out! Don't Bother
Interview with Shani Petroff
Bookworm: Welcome, Shani! To start off, could you tell us how you got the inspiration for Bedeviled?
Shani: When I was younger I read a lot of Christopher Pike and Lois Duncan. They made me fall in love with supernatural books, and it was always in the back of my mind that I wanted to write in that genre. Before I started working on Bedeviled, I was writing something else (that wasn’t paranormal). But the idea for Bedeviled kept creeping into my thoughts. I mentioned it to a friend. And she was like—that’s the book. You have to write it. The rest is history.
Bookworm: How did the cover of Bedeviled come to be?
Shani: Penguin hired a fabulous illustrator, J. David McKenney, to work on it. I love it. I think he’s spot on with Angel. And you’ll see, on this book cover, Angel is covering her ears. The next one she covers her eyes. See no evil, hear no evil….
(Me: That is so, so clever! I never really noticed that...LOL)
Bookworm: Are you planning to write more books about Angel and her devilish adventures?
Shani: There will be at least four books in the Bedeviled series. Book 2: Bedeviled: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly Dress is due out in January. And I’m working on Book 3 right now!
Bookworm: If you were the devil's daughter, what would you demand of your dad?
Shani: First I’d try for the big stuff—world peace and all that—but seeing as it’s the devil, I don’t think I’d get very far. So, I’d probably have to stick with the more selfish things: awesome apartments in a bunch of different cities, gobs of money, my very own TV show, book deals galore, and fun things like that!
Bookworm: What book have you recently read and loved?
Shani: I thought Models Don’t Eat Chocolate Cookies by Erin Dionne was a great read. The voice was fresh, funny and the book made you think about how we view ourselves and how to be comfortable in our own skin. (And there were moments where I actually found myself laughing out loud.)
(Me: I loved that one, too!)
Bookworm: What is currently playing on your iPod right now?
Shani: I have a wide variety of things on my iPod—but a few songs playing in the background during this interview: Taylor Swift’s You Belong With Me, Pink’s Stupid Girls, and Black Eyed Peas’ I Gotta Feeling.
Bookworm: What else do you want your readers to know about you?
Shani: Well, that my dad wasn’t the devil! I know it seems like a strange thing to point out, but you’d be surprised how many people ask if this was based on reality or if I had issues with my father. I didn’t. My father was an amazing man (the book is dedicated to him.) He passed away nine years ago, but I feel very lucky to have had him in my life. And I think he would have found if very amusing that people are actually asking me if he was the devil. I can totally picture him showing up at my signings wearing devil horns and having fun with the part.
Thank you so much, Shani, for the great interview and congratulations on the release of your book!
Shani also has an awesomely amazing interactive website. Sorry for my extreme gushing, but it is the coolest. thing. ever! Check it out here