About the Author
Kenneth B. Andersen (1976) is an award-winning Danish writer. He has published more than forty books for children and young adults, including both fantasy, horror, and science fiction.
His books have been translated into more than 15 languages and his hit-series about the superhero Antboy has been
turned into three movies. A musical adaptation of The Devil’s Apprentice, the first book in The Great Devil War series, opened in the fall 2018 and film rights for the series have been optioned.Kenneth lives in Copenhagen with his wife, two boys, a dog named Milo, and spiders in the basement
About the Book
Philip is a good boy, a really good boy, who accidentally gets sent to Hell to become the Devil’s heir. The Devil, Lucifer, is dying and desperately in need of a successor, but there’s been a mistake and Philip is the wrong boy. Philip is terrible at being bad, but Lucifer has no other choice than to begin the difficult task of training him in the ways of evil. Philip gets both friends and enemies in this odd, gloomy underworld—but who can he trust, when he discovers an evil-minded plot against the dark throne?
The Devil’s Apprentice is volume 1 in The Great Devil War-series.
Find it on Amazon here!
Phillip Engel is an Angel. Well not literally, but he is pretty much marked for sainthood. He never lies, always helps old ladies across the street, hands his homework in on time and never, never bullys anyone. So what happens when his arch-nemesis, the schools biggest bully Sam catches him on his way home from school one day and pushes him in front of an oncoming car. Well, naturally Phillip dies, what the real twist is though instead of heading upstairs to Heaven he gets dragged down to the deepest darkest pits of hell. You see there seems to have been a bit of a mix up, the car was meant to kill Sam not Philip and now this practical angel, this ultimate do-gooder has one hell of a task in front of him (pardon the pun). Why you ask? Because Lucifer is dying and needs a successor and poor Phillip has just been put forward for the job.
This was one of those books that I had pretty much no expectations about before reading. Was it going to be scary ( I hoped not… wimp remember!) Were the characters going to be likeable? Would it be a dark read? Luckily for me it was none of those things, surprisingly witty with some laugh out loud moments that manage to catch you out of the blue I thoroughly enjoyed following Philip on his journey to become the Devil.
Phillip is the main character and the book is told from his perspective. All he wants in life is to get through school so he can get away from Sam, the schools menacing bully. What he doesn’t expect, and I mean who would? Is that he would die and be transported to Hell, and as if that isn’t bad enough he has to train to become evil. This isn’t something that comes easy to Phillip at all, and once Lucifer realises there has been a mixup it’s too late, Death promised him one boy and just in the Devil’s luck it’s practically an Angel. Seeing Phillips progression from do-gooder to Devil was amusing to say the least, he fails nearly every task the Devil sets him and it takes some tricery from Lucifax, the devil’s cat and Lucifer himself before Phillip starts earning his horns.
The authors descriptions of Hell were rich and immersive. We see all different types of criminals suffering all different types of punishments. From the man who drowned his wife stuck in a perpetual state of drowning for all eternity, to the people who has commited suicide having to dig their own grave day after day. If found this idea really fresh, and the author manages to write most of this disturbing place with a sort of dark humour that has you chuckling away to yourself. As well as different types of punishments, there are different types of creatures that call Hell home. You have the Devils, creatures with horns, wings and tails these are the people who whisper in your ear, the creature’s behind all your bad decisions. Next we have the Vargars these creatures emit screams that bring about Tsunamis, earthquakes and the like and finally we have the Hushers these are the creatures that raise the hair on the back of your neck, they’re the monsters under your beds and in your closets. While this all sounds really quite creepy the author’s witty style of writing manages not to give you too many nightmares.
There are plenty of twists and turns throughout this book to keep you guessing, with one massive one at the end that I didn’t see coming at all. These, as well as the authors writing style, gives the book a flow that makes it easy to find yourself flying through multiple chapters in one sitting. He manages to make his Hell seem utterly believable and I for one would definitely want to head the other way. An easy 4/5 read for me and I will definitely be picking up the sequel at some point.