Review: Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins

Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins

Sophie Mercer thought she was a witch. That was the whole reason she was sent to Hex Hall, a reform school for delinquent Prodigium (a.k.a. witches, shape-shifters, and faeries). But then she discovered the family secret, and the fact that her hot crush, Archer Cross, is an agent for The Eye, a group bent on wiping Prodigium off the face of the earth.

Turns out, Sophie’s a demon, one of only two in the world-the other being her father. What’s worse, she has powers that threaten the lives of everyone she loves. Which is precisely why Sophie decides she must go to London for the Removal, a dangerous procedure that will either destroy her powers for good-or kill her.

But once Sophie arrives, she makes a shocking discovery. Her new housemates? They’re demons too. Meaning, someone is raising demons in secret, with creepy plans to use their powers, and probably not for good. Meanwhile, The Eye is set on hunting Sophie down, and they’re using Archer to do it. But it’s not like she has feelings for him anymore. Does she?

Demonglass is the second book in the Hex Hall series. I read the first book, Hex Hall, almost three years ago and all I remember about it is that it was a real struggle to get through. (I gave it three stars on Goodreads, so maybe my memory is faulty.) This review may contain spoilers for Hex Hall.

Sophie wants to undergo the Removal, which is exactly what it sounds like: the removal of her demon powers. She agrees to go to England for the summer, to stay with her demon father who she doesn’t know at all. If she still wants the Removal by the end of her visit, her father will allow it. He also allows her to bring her best friend and roommate, a vampire named Jenna. Her father invites Alexander Callahan, better known as Cal, and reveals that Sophie and Cal are betrothed.

When Sophie, Cal, and Jenna arrive at Thorne Abbey, they learn that it’s the temporary Council Headquarters. With three hundred rooms (Thirty-one are kitchens and ninety-eight are bathrooms!), there’s plenty of room for everyone, including the two demons who are already there.

We passed countless closed doors and turned down three different halls before reaching the library. Like the rest of the house, it was gorgeous. And gigantic. I actually froze in the doorway for a second. I wasn’t sure I’d ever seen so many books in my life. Shelf after shelf stretched out before me, and twin spiral staircases curled up to the second level, where there were even more books. Low couches were scattered throughout the room, and Tiffany lamps cast soft pools of light on the hardwood floor. Large windows at the other end of the room looked out over the river and let in the last few rays of the setting sun.

When can I move in?

Those two demons, Nick and Daisy, are problematic because Sophie and her dad are supposed to be the ONLY demons. So where did these two come from? They don’t know either, nor do they remember anything from the time before they became demons.

Sophie splits her summer between learning to control her demon powers with her father, spending time with Nick, Daisy, and Jenna, and mooning over Archer. I barely remember Archer or Cal from the first book, so I went into Demonglass with not strong feelings for either of them. In the end, I think I’m on Team Cal. There’s more conflict with Archer, what with him being a part of The Eye (the group trying to wipe out the supernaturals), but I just like Cal better even though he’s not in the book nearly as much as Archer. Cal’s presence doesn’t even seem necessary, other than to set up (or further) the love triangle.

Looking back on the books, it seems like not a lot happened in Demonglass that furthered the plot of the series, but I might find out when I read the next book that I’m wrong. The most interesting part of the book is the end, when the pace picks up. There’s a lot of action, some interesting twists, and a cliffhanger, which means I’m going to be reading Spellbound soon. I can’t imagine how the whole series is going to be wrapped up in just one more book.

3 1/2 stars
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Comments

  1. To be honest, I don’t have much intention to read HEX HALL — it just doesn’t sound like my kind of book — so I didn’t have to skim through your review. And I’m glad that the sequel turned out to be a little better than the first book, because usually it’s the other way round. I admire you for giving this such a high rating based on your thoughts! I probably wouldn’t have liked it as much as you did.

    Oh my gosh, Thorne Abbey sounds LOVELY. Almost like Hogwarts, only the latter’s better, for sure. 😉 Too bad that it sounds like Rachel Hawkins didn’t do a very good job with the recapping of the previous book, though. A good sequel is one that manages to tell just enough to jolt its readers’ memories, no matter how long ago they read it. And because I’m a severe sufferer of book amnesia, I forget stories extremely easily, so recaps are usually the most important part of the sequel for me. Bad recap = very low opinion of the book.

    Cal’s presence doesn’t even seem necessary, other than to set up (or further) the love triangle.” — Oh no, the dreaded love triangle. I don’t hate them. I just think that they add unnecessary drama, and a character that’s simply there to fuel on the love triangle? No, thanks. He sounds pretty useless, to be honest, so it’s surprising that you ended up liking him more than the other love interest!

    I’m glad that on the whole, DEMONGLASS seemed to meet your expectations. No plot development PROBABLY wouldn’t bother me much, since it sounds like the twists and action-packed pages kind of make up for it, but all the same, I wouldn’t have given it such a high rating (I’m a picky reader), so I commend you for being able to enjoy all the flaws, Jenna! Great review. 🙂
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    • Yes, I was surprised that this book was better than the first one. I wonder, though, if people who liked Hex Hall feel the same way. Like you said, the first book is usually the better one. There was some recap, but because I could barely remember the details, it was like I was starting the series with this book and skipping the first one entirely. I should probably go back and read Hex Hall again and see if I like it better the second time around. I probably won’t do that though. I have too many other books to read!
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  2. Hmmm. I never finished Hex Hall, though I did start it. I may have to reevaluate my first opinion, though; and maybe possibly give it a shot? 😉 Awesome review, girly! Sophie sounds like an interesting character. I’m sorry that the love triangle isn’t exactly working for you, though… the Archer part, I mean. Hopefully you’ll get to see more of Cal in the next book!
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  3. Good review. I haven’t read this series but have recently read the spin-off and liked it. Maybe one day I’ll pick this up, though.
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