It Devours! (Night Vale, #2)
From the authors of the New York Times bestselling novel Welcome to Night Vale and the creators of the #1 international podcast of the same name, comes a mystery exploring the intersections of faith and science, the growing relationship between two young people who want desperately to trust each other, and the terrifying, toothy power of the Smiling God.Nilanjana Sikdar is an outsider to the town of Night Vale. Working for Carlos, the town’s top scientist, she relies on fact and logic as her guiding principles. But all of that is put into question when Carlos gives her a special assignment investigating a mysterious rumbling in the desert wasteland outside of town. This investigation leads her to the Joyous Congregation of the Smiling God, and to Darryl, one of its most committed members. Caught between her beliefs in the ultimate power of science and her growing attraction to Darryl, she begins to suspect the Congregation is planning a ritual that could threaten the lives of everyone in town. Nilanjana and Darryl must search for common ground between their very different world views as they are faced with the Congregation’s darkest and most terrible secret.

It Devours! (Night Vale, #2) Details

TitleIt Devours! (Night Vale, #2)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 1st, 1970
Rating
GenreScience Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, Fiction

It Devours! (Night Vale, #2) Review

  • rin (lorenzo)
    January 1, 1970
    tell me it'll feature cecil/carlos and have my money
  • Maki
    January 1, 1970
    March 15, 2017:We have a title and release date! AND a description!January 17, 2017:Yesssssssss....
  • helena aeberli
    January 1, 1970
    it devours? what's it? the smiling god? or me being presented with a copy of this book?
  • Billie
    January 1, 1970
    I vacillated between three and four stars on this one because I really enjoyed it, but it felt like it was trying to say something deep-ish and important-ish about belief and science and, honestly, it just got in the way of the weird. It's not that Night Vale can't get philosophical, it just felt too...obvious in this case.
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  • Garrett
    January 1, 1970
    If anything, I liked this one better than the first one. Once again, the more familiar you are with the show, the better, but I haven't really listened in over a year(?) and I still found very poignant and engaging moments throughout. Like Fink and Cranor tend to do, this is entertaining on many levels, so there's the topmost Night Vale level, and then the stuff that waddles and crawls beneath that, and then there's the weirdly presented science / religion tension that drives the narrative and a If anything, I liked this one better than the first one. Once again, the more familiar you are with the show, the better, but I haven't really listened in over a year(?) and I still found very poignant and engaging moments throughout. Like Fink and Cranor tend to do, this is entertaining on many levels, so there's the topmost Night Vale level, and then the stuff that waddles and crawls beneath that, and then there's the weirdly presented science / religion tension that drives the narrative and also gives us the foundation for many of the relationships in the book. Same as before, plucks a couple of the characters from the town and spotlights them to good effect to tell an interesting and fun story.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    What I love about Welcome to Night Vale is the quality weirdness, and "It Devours!" is no exception. Equal parts intelligent, playful, disturbing, and incisive, this story is a joyride into the surreal subconscious with unexpected glimmering profundity.
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    I laughed, I cried, I was devoured by a smiling god.
  • Loring Wirbel
    January 1, 1970
    My only previous experience with Welcome to Night Vale was hearing a couple podcasts of a very interesting small town, a desert equivalent of Twin Peaks, where conspiracy theories always came true, where W.E.B. DuBois won World War I for the allies, and where strange maladies like throat spiders are commonplace. The two authors, Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, have a special talent for being equally droll to all sides in a cultural dispute. In this novel pitting devoutness against science, it wo My only previous experience with Welcome to Night Vale was hearing a couple podcasts of a very interesting small town, a desert equivalent of Twin Peaks, where conspiracy theories always came true, where W.E.B. DuBois won World War I for the allies, and where strange maladies like throat spiders are commonplace. The two authors, Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, have a special talent for being equally droll to all sides in a cultural dispute. In this novel pitting devoutness against science, it would be easy to simply make a comical parody of the religious evangelists. Fink & Cranor are more subtle, subjecting scientists to spoofs about how they will knock on doors and run away, develop hypotheses such as "Everything is frightening and we should hide," and act in such glamorous fashion, the scientists get written up in gossip magazines.The authors really are quite clever, and this book is one of the few that offers a laugh or two per page, a milestone many books claim but few deliver. The problem with the particular It Devours! in hand is similar to the problem of expecting a well-structured novel from Monty Python or The Firesign Theatre. The Night Vale duo might better have tried to publish an atlas of Night Vale, or a similar comical analysis not requiring plot development. Because as a story, this novel is fairly pedestrian.Oh, sure, you have your alternate universes and secret police helicopters and giant centipedes, surrounded by intriguing one-liner jokes, but the character development seems B-movie. Yes, some stories need to be told that way, but this one doesn't feel exciting in the telling. The authors get brownie points for little details. The ending appears to be on the verge of ending melodramatically, even sappily, happy, until it doesn't. But the effort to get a little serious at the end stumbles in its own efforts to meta-analyze Night Vale from the view of the mountain. Residents of Night Vale don't believe in mountains, the authors even said so.It would be fun to see mock social-scientific studies of Night Vale, or graphic novels of one or two characters. Taking the town at its silly, superficial surface may be the best way to approach the imaginary world created here. The typical printed novel just doesn't live up to the visions that the authors have for the town itself.
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  • Al Morse
    January 1, 1970
    Once again Joseph Fink and Jeffery Cranor have asked a complex question of their audience. Are science and religion reconcilable? Is it possible to have both strongly present in your life and remain true to both? While there is no straight answer in It Devours, the book guides us along Nilanjana and Daryll's attempts to understand each other. Night Vale is an absurd place, surreal beyond belief, and still the message isn't lost. The characters are people you know and love. A stellar read for all Once again Joseph Fink and Jeffery Cranor have asked a complex question of their audience. Are science and religion reconcilable? Is it possible to have both strongly present in your life and remain true to both? While there is no straight answer in It Devours, the book guides us along Nilanjana and Daryll's attempts to understand each other. Night Vale is an absurd place, surreal beyond belief, and still the message isn't lost. The characters are people you know and love. A stellar read for all.
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  • Lucy Ghost
    January 1, 1970
    Oh manShould I read this or shouldn't I?I dunno.If here're Carlos and Cecil, I'm in... I'll just throw this against a wall if they're NOT here!
  • Bryce
    January 1, 1970
    Two years ago, I began listening to the Night Vale podcast as I was falling asleep, and until reading this book (It Devours!? Oh yeah, I’ve read that book), my interaction with the Night Vale mythos was exclusively limited to that. The occasional reference to the friendly desert community did little in terms of sparking my appreciation for any deep narrative lore, since my appreciation of ‘Night Vale’ resided mostly in its aesthetic sensibilities and comedic tone. This book intrigued me though, Two years ago, I began listening to the Night Vale podcast as I was falling asleep, and until reading this book (It Devours!? Oh yeah, I’ve read that book), my interaction with the Night Vale mythos was exclusively limited to that. The occasional reference to the friendly desert community did little in terms of sparking my appreciation for any deep narrative lore, since my appreciation of ‘Night Vale’ resided mostly in its aesthetic sensibilities and comedic tone. This book intrigued me though, as flipping through it, I noticed some periodic illustrations, detailing information on the being known as The Smiling God and its clerical following. I enjoy books exploring faith, science, and (inclusively) philosophy in fictional contexts as much as anyone might and so, having an ARC available to me, I decided to give it a read.Disclaimer: the rest of this review assumes that you’ve read the book, or otherwise are not going to whine about ‘spoilers’. Personally, I don’t think anything in this review would have substantially changed how I felt about IT DEVOURS!, but if you already plan on reading it and care about minor details, then consider yourself warned.A chilling start. The story of Larry Leroy does a great job eliciting real concern for the wellbeing of all the citizens lost to mysterious circumstances throughout the rest of the novel, as Larry’s struggle to extend his legacy is a nearly ubiquitous human concern. It is also true that (if I were a resident in that universe) I would have found real value in the unique stories his ‘legacy’ provided. That chilling tone effectively persists throughout the rest of the novel, since as Nilanjana ‘scientifically’ investigates the mysterious disappearances and disturbances, I couldn’t help but remind myself that a unique legacy disappeared along with each missing person.The first point at which I felt that Fink and Cranor’s signature humor also really struck gold was when Nilanjana examined that first disappearance. After a short time investigating, Nilanjana finds herself reluctantly conversing with the helicopter observing overhead, which then joins us in reading chapter 6 (consisting of a quite aesthetically pleasing pamphlet on The Smiling God). The conversational delivery reminded me of the many times I’ve had someone look over my shoulders before awkwardly asking just what it is that I’m reading/doing, though in this case I was invited to laugh at such circumstances before being graced with the eye-candy that chapter 6 provides.Night Vale’s unique brand of horror-comedy pervades the rest of the book in similar profundity. As a further example, Nilanjana’s acknowledgement of the Angel near Larry Leroy’s house triggers neighborhood alarms, and thus an otherwise heartfelt moment meets in union with an unusual/frightful event. I would give a simple explanation for why these interactions are so entertaining: bravery. The residents of Night Vale are the perfect teachers of bravery, and beneath my amusement at learning that all wheat and wheat by-products once turned into snakes (and have been subsequently banned) lies a lesson in persevering through unfair and unnatural circumstances. Though living under inescapable surveillance, alarms, and threats of death or even worse, the citizens of Night Vale continue to persevere towards whatever individualistic sentiments give them purpose.I’m sure you can see the value in that type of narrative, so I’m going to switch gears and talk about the visuals. This book has a fantastic visual presence, eye catching on any table or bookshelf. The cover reminds me of pink lemonade candies. It looks delicious. The two chapters featuring illustrations are similarly fantastic, though it’s the use of worm and deterioration motifs that make them so memorable. They aren’t essential to the story, but their use of relevant motifs prevents them from feeling out of place, and gives them an apocryphal quality. Important icing on a tasty cake.Yet, despite most of the book’s content and visuals being fantastic, I should state one complaint: the fight with the centipede just doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. I had a hard time imagining how it all worked spatially, and how hearing people shout to one another, over the probably deafening sounds of ground being displaced and consumed, could have been possible. But don’t worry, because that complaint pales in comparison to the book’s successes, especially in its conclusion (which can’t be reasonably discussed in a review seeking to avoid spoilers).I'd last like to acknowledge that this book is very tonally consistent. Surprisingly so. Night Vale’s signature brand of horror/comedy is embedded into every scene in the book, within a narrative that twists its way through a broad spectrum of sometimes very serious inquiries. I’d personally count it as a success that I was always able to pick up the book knowing how I would feel after putting it down again, but not knowing exactly what to expect next from the story.So overall, one of the best reads I expect to come from 2017. Thanks for reading and I hope you also enjoy!
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  • K Bo
    January 1, 1970
    I read Welcome to Night Vale earlier this year, and honestly I think this follow-up is much better. It Devours! embraces the print media more than its predecessor, to its advantage - have you ever wanted to actually read a pamphlet from Night Vale? Now you can! Also, I am personally biased to like scientists and our main POV character, Nilanjara, is a scientist, so that's awesome.This book is plot-driven and spends less time marinating in the atmosphere of Night Vale, so if you haven't read the I read Welcome to Night Vale earlier this year, and honestly I think this follow-up is much better. It Devours! embraces the print media more than its predecessor, to its advantage - have you ever wanted to actually read a pamphlet from Night Vale? Now you can! Also, I am personally biased to like scientists and our main POV character, Nilanjara, is a scientist, so that's awesome.This book is plot-driven and spends less time marinating in the atmosphere of Night Vale, so if you haven't read the first book or are unfamiliar with the podcast, it probably would be a good idea to look those up first to get a handle on the general aura of weirdness. But beyond that, this book will switch from absurdist horror to hauntingly beautiful and back. In Night Vale, everyone is poignantly human - even when they're not actually human, per se.I really enjoyed this book, and fans of Night Vale are going to... eat it up.(sorry not sorry)
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  • Chardon (dis.cat)
    January 1, 1970
    Cranor and Fink have certainly posed an interesting question in this novel: can religion and science coexist in a person? This is the deeper, underlying question that runs all through this book, underneath all the amazing Night Vale absurdity that true fans love. This book also tackles the heavy topics of "otherness," and the kinds of meaningful relationships that exist between people, and what those relationships mean. Cranor and Fink are masters of telling an incredibly unbelievable story, and Cranor and Fink have certainly posed an interesting question in this novel: can religion and science coexist in a person? This is the deeper, underlying question that runs all through this book, underneath all the amazing Night Vale absurdity that true fans love. This book also tackles the heavy topics of "otherness," and the kinds of meaningful relationships that exist between people, and what those relationships mean. Cranor and Fink are masters of telling an incredibly unbelievable story, and making witty commentary on the state of the world at the same time. I loved this book and cannot wait to see what these fellas come up with next!
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  • Rachel Jacobs
    January 1, 1970
    Uhh had mixed feelings through. Good to see Carlos in the spotlight but I didn't like this book too much until the very end. Okay maybe i just liked the Carlos parts. The magic of the town didn't come out in this novel, as it seemed to focus on a couple that had little chemistry and a church with two dimensional villains. Worth a read but not great.
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  • Sharon
    January 1, 1970
    I was lucky enough to be given an ARC of It Devours! Overall, I think I prefer this one to the first Night Vale novel, but I honestly find I enjoy the podcast much more than its novelizations. Not mad at it though!
  • Rosalie
    January 1, 1970
    3.5. I'm VERY behind on the podcast, but I don't think that takes away from the enjoyment of the second Welcome to Night Vale novel. Familiarity helps of course. Strange and entertaining. Recommended for fans of the podcast. I read the ARC. Book available October 2017.
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  • Erin
    January 1, 1970
    As is the case with the first one, the book isn't directly about the main characters from WtNV, but I kind of like it that way. You have to be prepared for the weirdness and just accept it, and you have to be prepared for surprising moments of depth.
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  • Robert
    January 1, 1970
    All the quirk and style of the podcast and first novel, but with a much deeper sense of self. More defined characters, better plot. Fans of Night vale will love it, those who aren't yet fans will become fans.
  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    An ok book in itself, but a disappointment after the first novel.
  • Portia Kapraun
    January 1, 1970
    Even better than the first!
  • Julia
    January 1, 1970
    Longtime residents of Night Vale and newcomers alike will be drawn into the mysteries and conspiracy theories that are par for the course in this desert town. Meet Nilanjana, a scientist working in a town where time doesn't work right, and a house can look like it exists but doesn't. When mysterious, unscheduled earthquakes begin plaguing the town, Nilanjana sets out to find the truth, even with the Sheriff's Secret Police and the vague, yet menacing government agency trying to stop her. All evi Longtime residents of Night Vale and newcomers alike will be drawn into the mysteries and conspiracy theories that are par for the course in this desert town. Meet Nilanjana, a scientist working in a town where time doesn't work right, and a house can look like it exists but doesn't. When mysterious, unscheduled earthquakes begin plaguing the town, Nilanjana sets out to find the truth, even with the Sheriff's Secret Police and the vague, yet menacing government agency trying to stop her. All evidence points towards the newly formed Joyous Congregation of the Smiling God and their toothsome deity, but the truth is hard to find in a town like Night Vale.Listeners of the podcast will find lots of familiar faces and some new insight into the world of Night Vale, but It Devours! is a great introduction for new fans. Night Vale is so familiar and yet so full of weird and wonderful, I enjoy every minute I spend in this town. There's really nothing else quite like it.
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  • Epizeuxis
    January 1, 1970
    Yeeeeeeeeeah!I need to reread the first one...
  • Alex
    January 1, 1970
    Not as good as the first night vale novel but I still ate it up.
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