Derby Cain Casey has always been in charge. She was groomed to be the heir to the Casey family empire, an empire of less than legal businesses for the most part. She is one of the major crime bosses in New Orleans. She outsmarts just about everyone in the room and is a formidable opponent to the FBI who have been trying to catch her for years.
Casey has a weakness though, a woman named Emma. Emma is her wife and the mother to her child and when Emma left she broke a part of Casey and took it with her. Now, some time later Emma returns and Casey struggles to reconcile the feelings she still has for this farm girl.
It is a novel about two women with a complicated history. Add in a little bit of the FBI trying to catch the mobster and other mobsters fighting a territory war and you have a multi layer story with a lovable heroic villain (Cain Casey), her wife (Emma) and their son (Hayden).
The three main characters are written with a sensitivity that is rare. While Cain is angry, she also still holds a candle for Emma.
It would be easy to vilify Emma, yet Vali writes her as a strong woman who has made bad decisions.
Even Hayden was written with an understanding that comes from knowing what a young man is like when he feels betrayed.
The Writing Style
I found the first chapter to be a little bit of a slog. The writing was overly complex and I am not sure the chapter was needed. Nonetheless once you get past chapter one you will discover a well paced, unique and well written book.
This was a good book. I enjoyed how unique the story was and I love the anti hero trope. The idea of Casey always getting one over on the FBI tickled me.
The intro wasn’t fantastic.
The book is well worth it. Be prepared, though, to spend money on the rest of the series as you want to know what happens to the characters. And there are threads left dangling so you will have questions.
Excerpt From The Devil Inside by Ali Vali
“I don’t think about you enough to hate you, so get off your soapbox. It isn’t going to gain you any sympathy. What do you want?” Cain watched a blue Jay out on the patio fly away with a forgotten straw and pretended Emma being there wasn’t affecting her. Next to her sat the woman who had managed to do what none of her enemies has accomplished. She has cut deep and left a wound that still festered.
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN: 978-1933110301
- Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
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