Demon Catchers of MilanAuthor: Kat BeyerPublish Date: August 28, 2012Publisher: Egmont USAMia's ordinary life is disrupted in the most horrifying way possible when she is possessed by a hungry and powerful demon--and only saved by the arrival of relatives from Italy, the country her grandfather fled many decades ago. Now her cousins Emilio and Giuliano say the only way to keep her safe is for her to come back with them to Milan, to live, to learn Italian, to fall in and out of love, and to master the family trade: fighting all demons with the lore of bell, book, and candle. Milan is not what Mia expected, but it will change her forever, in this stunningly well-written novel about an American girl who, fleeing an ancient evil, finds her only salvation in her ancestral home.
I’m not entirely sure where to begin with this. I got sucked in from the first page and couldn’t put it down until it was done. Kat Beyer is a powerful story teller and I’m very happy to have been allowed an advanced read.
Milan is beautiful and very old. It’s age is emphasized in Mia’s ancestral home, in their work, even in the holidays that they celebrate. When nothing else is familiar the age of the city is a comfort in a way I hadn’t thought was possible.
Mia is a great character. She’s willing to learn and push herself beyond what she thinks she is capable of. She’s actually capable of many great things but her self esteem feels on the low side and her confusion (or ignorance) of her Italian family only provokes her into learning. She’s not perfect, she’s far from it, and her family is certainly not perfect, but it’s family and the reader can definitely feel the love even when it’s not expressed.
There is no love triangle in this book, for which I am super happy about. This isn’t about love. This is about finding oneself and understanding what that is. This is about being open to new things and not closed minded. There is so much OTHER stuff this book touches on that the brief encounter with flirtation/infatuation seems almost out of place. Sort of like, really Mia, is that really important right now? However, with Mia’s background, it’s also very naturally done and there’s no WTF moment so much as a moment of disappointment in the character’s behavior. It’s not a surprise she did it, it’s a disappointment she didn’t think things through.
Overall this is a great book. It’s in no way predictable and the story is beautifully laid out. I recommend this for all YA lovers of the paranormal persuasion and some of the not. It’s about demons yes, but in a very realistic portrayal of exorcism and church. This could fall under paranormal or depending on a person’s beliefs not.