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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Weird and surreal supernatural/satanic action packed mystery.
The Diabolist is the third novel featuring Dominic Grey and works well as a stand alone. I haven't read the other two novels but had no problem diving straight into the plot because there's enough back history to cover most of the gaps. Obviously it's best to read a series of books in the proper order but don't worry too much if you haven't it won't spoil your reading...
Published 15 months ago by JK

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard work in places
This is a strange kind of religious/conspiracy thriller which concentrates on the religious cults which worship evil in whatever form - the form, cause and appearance of evil is a definite theme in this book. Two investigators Dominic Grey who is ex-Special Forces (actually a bit of a thug with a penchant for martial arts) and Viktor Radek (a professor who specialises in...
Published 11 months ago by Anne


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Weird and surreal supernatural/satanic action packed mystery., 31 May 2013
By 
JK "Julie K." (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
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The Diabolist is the third novel featuring Dominic Grey and works well as a stand alone. I haven't read the other two novels but had no problem diving straight into the plot because there's enough back history to cover most of the gaps. Obviously it's best to read a series of books in the proper order but don't worry too much if you haven't it won't spoil your reading pleasure.

I'm a fan of the surreal and the supernatural and The Diabolist mostly worked for me. Fast paced, well plotted and offering some unique twists and turns featuring Satanism, ritual, jujitsu, out of the body phenomenon, magic and organised religion to name but a few. It's all just slightly obscure and close to being unbelievable but this crazy, scary, dark novel is certainly entertaining.

Layton Green moves the plot along with a clever use of different, odd, locations from San Francisco to Whitby as he examines the murders of a satanic elite. Viktor Radek and Dominic Grey, both with their own unique speciality, are the men bought in to investigate and it's probably safe to say they have some 'unusual habits'.

There's a lot to take in. You do need to suspend your belief to stay with the plot. The Diabolist isn't like anything else I've read and please don't think you're going to be reading a 'Dan Brown' or a serious police procedural. You're not. The Diabolist is a fast adventure into weird territory populated by the eccentric and downright 'odd' but it does read well.

One of those strange and quirky novels that's going to divide opinion and harvest varied reviews.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark Powers at Work, 14 July 2013
By 
Brett H "pentangle" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
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The Diabolist is the third in a series featuring Dominic Grey, but this is very much a standalone book which only occasionally refers back to things which happened in the preceding stories and certainly does not rely upon the reader knowing what has come before. It is an interesting story, which starts with the strange death of the leaders of various satanic cults, apparently with paranormal intervention and Dominic and his employer, Viktor, set about investigating them.

Although there is an action packed climax, this story, in general, does not move along at a fast pace. However, there is a lot of background information on the supernatural, particularly astral projection, and the history of various cults such as Zoroastrianism and Ahriman. This all gives the impression of being well researched and factual, and the information I was already aware of was certainly based on fact. I have not, however, checked to find out if the author has embellished these facts and in particular I do not know to what extent the cult of Ahriman, which is an essential element in the story, is the invention of the author, or is based on fact. Personally I thoroughly enjoyed all of this as I have always been interested in the supernatural. However, it may not be for everyone.

At the heart of the story is that thorny old question which has exercised the minds of theologians throughout the ages. If God is all powerful then why does he allow evil into the world. Or is there a counterbalancing force for evil to balance the force for good. It all makes for a fairly unambiguous story in terms of good and evil, black and white and who are the goodies and the baddies, with the exception of the enigmatic Anka, who flits in and out of the story and whose motives and affiliations are never entirely clear.

This is a tale which I found absorbing throughout and thoroughly enjoyed. I particularly appreciated the fairly extensive references to the paranormal and religious background to the story, although perhaps not all readers will. Recommended!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful read, 21 Jun 2013
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I admit I have a soft spot for religious conspiracy type thrillers ever since I read the Da Vinci Code. The back of the review copy of this book hints that fans of The X-Files, Dan Brown, James Rollins, Steve Berry and Douglas Preston will love it. They had me at X-Files, one of my favourites of all time.

The book was nothing at all like the Da Vinci code, it was in a class all its own and it was a wonderful, roller-coaster read of a book. The pages just flew by, you got so engrossed in it. A great scope of a plot, filled with quirky characters - Viktor Radek seemed a bit as if he stepped out of the nineteenth century with his old-world charm and addiction to absinthe.

Some of it was far-fetched and ludicrous, but the novel was so well-crafted that you could suspend your disbelief and just enjoy. You were drawn into the world the author created and as you were reading, nothing seemed out of place. It was a very interesting read and I might have to go and hunt out Radek's and Grey's other adventures (this one is third in the series, but still works as a standalone novel.)
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4.0 out of 5 stars An intelligent and convincing horror story., 14 Aug 2014
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This review is from: The Diabolist (The Dominic Grey Series) (Kindle Edition)
Having initially discovered that The Diabolist was the third of a series, I purchased the other two and read them first. I'm glad I did. I fully enjoyed them, particularly The Summoner with the beautiful Nya and the mysterious Voodoo priest and his frightening powers. Learning to know and love the principal characters, Victor and Grey, I was truly gasping to read the third book in the series, The Diabolist.

The Diabolist is a great story and I truly enjoyed it. In my youth I was a keen fan of Dennis Wheatley and I found many echoes of Wheatley in this book. All of Wheatley's old terms and concepts are here...magus, ipssissimus,astral projection, satanic rituals...but with a highly scientific, modern overlay. I have to say that in sharing the proceeds of his extensive research with his reader, Green sometimes loses the pace and tension that never flagged in the old Wheatley books but Green's own slant, with its patina of cynicism and disbelief, helps make the story all the more credible.

I might also add that if the reader is one who likes to grapple with philosophical and theological issues, there is an extra layer of interest available to him in this book. I am such a reader and, while Green weaves his theological details seamlessly into the story, I found myself at odds with much of what he was saying (or implying.) Nonetheless, my theological views do not detract from what is a fascinating and exciting tale with a truly nerve-curdling climax.

If you're simply reading this review, I urge you to try all three books. All are exceptionally erudite, well-written and, most of all, darn good yarns.
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5.0 out of 5 stars ‘Religious phenomenology is simply anthropology of the mind’, 1 Aug 2014
This review is from: The Diabolist (The Dominic Grey Series) (Kindle Edition)
For me personally, as well as being the very current Layton Green, this is an author who is surely destined to rival legendary writer of the occult thriller, Dennis Wheatley and his more recent contemporary, Dan Brown.

With his in-depth knowledge and meticulous research into his chosen genre; together with his well defined, complex and multi faceted characters; all so ably supported by some excellent visually descriptive and intense dialogue, a unique and unconventional approach to storytelling and a mature, skilled and frankly mind blowingly scary plot building ability, Layton has to be one of my ‘best read’ authors for some considerable time.

Layton has surely taken ritualistic description to a whole new level of intensity, in this his third Dominic Grey adventure, with his detailed, graphic narrative and seemingly non-stop, blood curdling action, which sets the pulse racing and the heart beating out of control.

When I wasn’t being scared witless, I was being treated to a truly complex and detailed insight into the world of the occult and Satanism, together with some well informed, meticulously researched and sympathetically articulated information of an almost theological nature ……., which had me reaching for the ‘Google’ search button, again and again. The reader needs to be prepared to digest and absorb this cornucopia of information, as a well informed and expansive window onto the world in which Layton’s characters of Dominic Grey and Viktor Radek live, breathe and sleep! Although a still slightly opaque window, where I didn’t feel that perhaps all the questions had been answered, I was left to examine several of my own thoughts and beliefs and to draw many of my own conclusions.

I constantly found my views and opinions challenged and not all my questions answered, as I was drawn into Dominic and Victor’s arcane and introspective world. The partnership between the two men, is a relatively new one, which to me, cannot yet be described as a friendship, as the level of trust and open dialogue are not quite transparent enough and not all thoughts and ideas are shared. Both men are loners, used to keeping well buried secrets, carrying deeply entrenched beliefs and having emotions still raw and sometimes barely controlled.

As this, the third case on which the two companions embark together, unfolds, the communication between them is still sporadic and very much incomplete, which this time, places both their own lives and those of others in danger. As Layton peels back the layers of their introspection, he begins the process of uniting them, building on their tenuous trust and has them sharing personal and private information ….

This case is special and by far their most dangerous to date, as Viktor’s own life is threatened explicitly when his nemesis decides to make things very personal. A long ago, but never to be forgotten love triangle, is laid bare, with unhealed wounds and old grudges brought very much to the forefront of a plan to rewrite religion on a global scale!

A challenge to all you Dan Brown fans out there …. Try this book and you’ll be hooked …. There’ll be no going back!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard work in places, 21 Sep 2013
By 
Anne (Sheffield, Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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This is a strange kind of religious/conspiracy thriller which concentrates on the religious cults which worship evil in whatever form - the form, cause and appearance of evil is a definite theme in this book. Two investigators Dominic Grey who is ex-Special Forces (actually a bit of a thug with a penchant for martial arts) and Viktor Radek (a professor who specialises in cults) are trying to ascertain what has killed the leaders of two semi-Satanic organisations in mysterious circumstances. As is usual in these type of books the chase leads them across the world,although much of the book is set in Britain.

I had problems with this book on a number of levels. Firstly, I was never sure of the basis for their authority. Apparently, they have Interpol identification cards but I am not sure that this should mean that local police forces automatically do everything they say and I certainly don't believe that it allows them to torture witnesses or to leave crime scenes without dealing with the local authorities. They seemed to roam around Europe expecting people to answer their questions and getting quite violent when they didn't - little of the information they gathered would ever have been acceptable in court !

If you get past that then you have to deal with the episodic way in which the book is written. The main characters go from one place to find something out and then on to another. You need a good linking theme and plenty of identification with the protagonists to make that work and it doesn't here - the result is that the book is bitty. The pace is slowed down a lot by flashbacks to Viktor's youth and by a huge amount of factual information about various deities and belief systems. I didn't get the sense of urgency which the author should have injected.

Finally, I did find the book very American although it was set in Europe. American words were used all the way through the book irrespective of the locality and on occasion I thought that the author made slips which a local author wouldn't (a black cab from York to Whitby ? Possible but not plausible).

There are some very atmospheric scenes in this book and the locations are interesting but I didn't think that they joined up well into a coherent whole. The information on Satanic like deities and cults was fascinating but at times a bit overwhelming. In the end the book failed for me because I didn't identify with the main characters or really engage with the story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very well done, 2 Sep 2013
By 
Sussman "Sussman" (London CA) - See all my reviews
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I really liked this rather well done thriller. What is also nice about this novel is that is a `stand-alone', and not part of a series. Do not get me wrong I like books that are series; it is just that it is all too often certain genres, of stories, seem to run over several books.
The narrative has some rather good twists and turns that made this reader not only guessing, but also kept me glued to the book. The main characters, are rather unusual, but are rather well done and defiantly not flat. I have yet to sample the authors other works, but will do so now - this is a very good read and recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good one, 26 Jun 2013
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This review is from: The Diabolist (The Dominic Grey Series) (Kindle Edition)
Yet again another good plot perhaps need to read in the day when fully awake as many twists and turns. . Also need good dictionary!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thriller, 23 Jun 2013
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This is an engaging and well written thriller. Although this novel is part of a series, I haven't read the previous books but did not find it was necessary to do that. The story feels self contained and is full of plenty of action and moves at a steady pace with twists and turns. The two lead protagonists are well rounded and interesting characters. I enjoyed this novel and will seek out more in this series. Recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic read, 22 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The Diabolist (The Dominic Grey Series) (Kindle Edition)
I really loved this book the twists and turns made it a great roller coaster of a story I can but thank you for a great masterpiece.
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