Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite
The Devil's Lieutenant by Shervin Jamali is a chilling, disturbing, but intriguing descent into hell in more ways than one. It's frighteningly realistic, but simultaneously unreal...unless you really believe in the existence of heaven and hell, God and the devil, and the infinite war religion would have us believe continues in the realms. And if you enjoy horrific fantasy, you won't be able to put The Devil's Lieutenant down.
When a policeman, Michael, suddenly and violently loses both his beloved wife and child, his life becomes a nightmare, fueled by uncontrolled drinking to drown his sorrows and ease his pain. Forever drunk, he begins to hallucinate: the devil is sitting there smiling at him, pouring his drinks, and offering him a way out of the hell of his real world. All he has to do is kill a handful of evil people so the devil can take their souls to hell with him. In exchange, the devil will help him get his wife's and child's souls out of hell and back to heaven where they belong. Why are they in hell in the first place? That's for the reader to find out. The hard part for Michael is that he is, after all, a good person, one who saves lives, not takes them. But he can't get past the loss of his loved ones and is ready to do whatever it takes, if it means getting them back somehow or other. Will Michael help the devil in the hopes that the devil will help him? And where is God in all this?
Michael and the reader will meet them both in The Devil's Lieutenant.
Shervin Jamali has written a fast-paced, tension-filled gripper in this one. Readers will be saddened by Michael's despair and the effects of alcohol on a desperate human being. Therein is the realistic part of The Devil's Lieutenant. There are spots where the editing didn't catch various grammatical errors, but to be honest, the book is such a good, fast read, who cares?