The Diviners

Hardcover | September 18, 2012

byLibba Bray

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Do you believe there are ghosts and demons and Diviners among us?
Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City--and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It's 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfield girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her Uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.
Evie worries he'll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.
As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened....
Printz Award-winning and New York Times bestselling author Libba Bray opens a brand-new historical series withThe Diviners, where the glittering surface of the Roaring Twenties hides a mystical horror creeping across the country.

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From the Publisher

Do you believe there are ghosts and demons and Diviners among us?Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City--and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It's 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfield girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she h...

Libba Bray is the author of theNew York Times bestsellerBeauty Queens, the 2010 Printz Award-winningGoing Bovine, and the acclaimed Gemma Doyle trilogy. She lives in Brooklyn, New York. Visit her atwww.libbabray.com.

other books by Libba Bray

A Great and Terrible Beauty
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Lair Of Dreams: A Diviners Novel

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Beauty Queens
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see all books by Libba Bray
Format:HardcoverDimensions:592 pages, 9.25 × 6.5 × 1.75 inPublished:September 18, 2012Publisher:Little, Brown Books for Young ReadersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:031612611X

ISBN - 13:9780316126113

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Customer Reviews of The Diviners

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing. I started it hoping that it was a quick but involving read. And it surely was - I loved the characters, and I was really into the plot line. Good balance of character and plot development. I now need to buy the next book.
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love everything about it! I haven’t read a YA fantasy book this good in A LONG time. This book was simply AMAZING :) I don’t know if it’s because this book really is an incredible gem or because I just got out of a semester full of Canadian Lit (BLAH. Why is our literature so BORING?!) but I ABSOLUTELY LOVED this book and I am most definitely looking forward to the next installments of The Diviners series! This book had elements of all the things I love, including fantasy, history and a good murder mystery. The story was able to combine all three genres so successfully that I couldn’t help but fall in love with it. The opening scene with the Ouija board and New York in the Roaring Twenties immediately sucked me in and didn’t let me go! Set in 1926, The Diviners tells the story of young Evie O’Neill who is sent to live in New York with her bachelor uncle who owns a museum dedicated to the supernatural and the occult. Evie herself has a strange power where she can read a person and their secrets by holding an object that belongs to them. During her stay with her uncle, a series of strange murders take place and maybe, just maybe, her quirky gift can help catch a serial killer who may have some… supernatural qualities of his own. The amazing cast of characters includes a humble plain girl named Mabel, Uncle Will’s assistant Jericho, flapper Theta, pianist Henry, numbers runner Memphis and pick pocket Sam. All of the characters have elaborate and complicated pasts and I was enthralled by all of their stories. The murder mystery is established early and I loved reading the spookiness of it all. Another aspect I loved was the chapters interspersed throughout the main narrative about the murder victims and their last moments on earth with the madman. In these chapters we could catch glimpses of the killer and feel the terror of the victims. I mean, the murderer whistled and sang a CHILDREN’S RHYME. HOW BRILLIANT IS THAT? HOW UNBELIEVABLY CREEPY. I LOVED it :) Did I say that already? Along with the murder chapters, the amazing Libba Bray would also break the narrative to insert chilling and haunting pieces about ghostly things that were happening throughout the country, and glimpses at historical events relative to the story and the characters’ backgrounds. It sounds like the story might be jumpy and disjointed but IT WORKED. It worked brilliantly. I gave this book 5 stars (the first book I’ve rated this high in a long time) because the little issues I had with it aren’t even really important enough to mention. But now that I’ve mentioned I had qualms I have to follow through, don’t I? I’m not going to lie, Evie kind of annoyed me at the beginning. I thought she was kind of obnoxious, but she grew on me I guess, even though she is not my favourite character in the book by far. That honor belongs to the wonderful uncle, Will Fitzgerald and the fabulous Theta Knight. Anyway. What are you still doing reading this review?? My advice is to STEP AWAY from the computer, grab this book and read immediately! Go on. Whether this book is waiting patiently on your shelf at home or at your nearest book store take it down and ENJOY :) I sure did!
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love everything about it! I haven’t read a YA fantasy book this good in A LONG time. This book was simply AMAZING :) I don’t know if it’s because this book really is an incredible gem or because I just got out of a semester full of Canadian Lit (BLAH. Why is our literature so BORING?!) but I ABSOLUTELY LOVED this book and I am most definitely looking forward to the next installments of The Diviners series! This book had elements of all the things I love, including fantasy, history and a good murder mystery. The story was able to combine all three genres so successfully that I couldn’t help but fall in love with it. The opening scene with the Ouija board and New York in the Roaring Twenties immediately sucked me in and didn’t let me go! Set in 1926, The Diviners tells the story of young Evie O’Neill who is sent to live in New York with her bachelor uncle who owns a museum dedicated to the supernatural and the occult. Evie herself has a strange power where she can read a person and their secrets by holding an object that belongs to them. During her stay with her uncle, a series of strange murders take place and maybe, just maybe, her quirky gift can help catch a serial killer who may have some… supernatural qualities of his own. The amazing cast of characters includes a humble plain girl named Mabel, Uncle Will’s assistant Jericho, flapper Theta, pianist Henry, numbers runner Memphis and pick pocket Sam. All of the characters have elaborate and complicated pasts and I was enthralled by all of their stories. The murder mystery is established early and I loved reading the spookiness of it all. Another aspect I loved was the chapters interspersed throughout the main narrative about the murder victims and their last moments on earth with the madman. In these chapters we could catch glimpses of the killer and feel the terror of the victims. I mean, the murderer whistled and sang a CHILDREN’S RHYME. HOW BRILLIANT IS THAT? HOW UNBELIEVABLY CREEPY. I LOVED it :) Did I say that already? Along with the murder chapters, the amazing Libba Bray would also break the narrative to insert chilling and haunting pieces about ghostly things that were happening throughout the country, and glimpses at historical events relative to the story and the characters’ backgrounds. It sounds like the story might be jumpy and disjointed but IT WORKED. It worked brilliantly. I gave this book 5 stars (the first book I’ve rated this high in a long time) because the little issues I had with it aren’t even really important enough to mention. But now that I’ve mentioned I had qualms I have to follow through, don’t I? I’m not going to lie, Evie kind of annoyed me at the beginning. I thought she was kind of obnoxious, but she grew on me I guess, even though she is not my favourite character in the book by far. That honor belongs to the wonderful uncle, Will Fitzgerald and the fabulous Theta Knight. Anyway. What are you still doing reading this review?? My advice is to STEP AWAY from the computer, grab this book and read immediately! Go on. Whether this book is waiting patiently on your shelf at home or at your nearest book store take it down and ENJOY :) I sure did!
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from 1920's Paranormal The Diviners is a long, dark, ghost story set in New York in the 1920's. I did enjoy the book, the writing, the setting, and the paranormal aspects of it. However, I have to say that I enjoyed the "supporting" characters such as Memphis and Sam more than the protagonist, Evie. I did feel for her, how hard it must have been for her after her brother died and why she was acting out, but, the supporting cast made the book. I think one of my reservations about this book is that many of the characters weren't necessary to this particular story -- they were there to set up the bigger story of the series. This book could have done without them, they were not necessary to its plot, and this bothered me, though I do imagine that the big finale at the end of the series will be spectacular. Bray has laid a huge amount of groundwork. Also, I wasn't thrilled with the romantic part of the ending to this book. I'll leave it there so as not to spoil anything. If you love ghosts, the paranormal, historical settings, and long epic type books, you might enjoy this one.
Date published: 2016-01-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Just "Meh" I loved the historical element of this one and thought that part of it was exquisitely written. It came off as a historical fiction novel without having to remind me every ten seconds of what time period it was set in and/or having me question that it actually was a specific time period. But I didn't like Evie. She was kind of stupid in my opinion and a lot of the decisions she made were not even remotely in the realm of being good ones. And at the end? No, just no Evie. Don't do that. Some of her phrases and choice of words irritated me beyond belief. It was just not something I wanted to constantly read and the dialogue got very frustrating at the end. All the characters were fairly flat though -- not that interesting and nothing more than the typical characters. And the progress and pace of these characters was off so much because it is being set up as the first in a series. At first I thought maybe I was just not reading it properly because I hadn't seen any news that it was more than a standalone but with the ending the way it was, I then realized that we were getting insight into so many other characters BECAUSE there was going to be more to the series. And I think some of the amazing story telling that Libba Bray can do was squashed because she was trying to stuff too much into this one book. Overall: 3/5 stars because it was just a meh book for me that could have been great. I am looking forward to seeing what more is to come in Lair of Dreams (and I have heard good things about that one)
Date published: 2015-08-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The diviners was simply divine! Long book but worth every page! Intense, thrilling, engaging. Just the right amount of thrill and fear. Would recommend to young adults looking for romance, a good mystery and just a little magic.
Date published: 2014-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The diviners was simply divine! Extremely hard to put down, this novel took me through a nail biting journey that I will never forget. One of the first thriller type novels I've read and am looking forward to the second book coming out in Summer 2014 (Lair of Dreams)
Date published: 2014-06-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Diviners I enjoyed the historical information that was intermingled throughout the book.
Date published: 2014-06-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Review from Esther's Ever After Libba Bray is a master of Young Adult paranormal (in my opinion) and The Diviners is perfect proof of that claim. The Diviners is a creepy, bold tale that will leave your heart pounding in anticipation. Reasons to Read: 1. An eerie, macabre storyline: I'm the kind of person that likes to be scared... but just a little bit. And The Diviners struck a perfect balance between some of its more disturbing scenes and humour/mystery to ensure my nightmares weren't horrific. 2. Part murder mystery, part ghost story: There's a difference between reading true crime and ghost stories, but somehow the lines end up blurred here. The evolution from one to the other is flawless with its gradual development and slow reveal of the mystery. And I liked the inclusion of both aspects, which are similar yet distinct, because it appealed to both my curious nature and my imagination. 3. A real Roaring Twenties atmosphere: This is positively brilliant on Libba's part. I have rarely read a book with such a strong sense of atmosphere which completely consumed me, and without losing my interest. The incorporation of appropriate slang, attention to detail in the descriptions, and the setting itself all reflected the time period and it really stood out to me. I had some mixed thoughts on the characters, however. I didn't love Evie but I didn't hate her, either. She's clearly a flawed character and far from perfect - I don't mind that at all and think that's a rather accurate reflection of a teenage girl. I don't want perfect characters. But I never felt like I truly connected with her, and I think that can partially be attributed to the sheer number of characters introduced and the switching points of view. For this reason, it also seemed to take a while for the plot to build, and overall that's where the book suffered. Importantly, there were a few too many subplots which were briefly introduced yet without any follow up. It's clearly a set up for future books in the series, but I wasn't a big fan of the simple introduction without any development whatsoever. This story is so unlike other books I've read that even with its weaknesses, I adored it! It's an exceptional YA book, and Libba Bray has impressed me yet again with her talent for weaving a story and immersing me in the reading experience. Review copy received from Hachette Book Group Canada for review; no other compensation was received.
Date published: 2014-05-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Chilling Tale Shipped off to New York City after a disastrous night, Evie finds living with her uncle a blessed reprieve from the suburbs where she lives. When there's a murderer on the loose, Evie finds herself right in the middle of all the chaos.  Set in the roaring twenties, Libba lines up the setting nicely. It's almost crystal clear what every every inch of the character is seeing. The details are divine, almost like a movie being played right inside my imagination. The story sets up in the beginning, but once all the characters are introduced you are determined to make sure you remember them and their sub plots. There's a lot of characters in play, and they all play their part. Even in the end, when everything comes together, you know how brilliant Libba is when wrapping up a book. The mystery is completely compelling and before I knew it, I read all 578 pages of it. Evie is just a little self-centered, a little spoiled, but that all changes when she stumbles upon the murder scene. Just reading about it gave me chills, and I had to forget some of the demonic possessions that were happening from the book. If you scare easily, then I'm not sure if this book would be for you. Just a little warning since it did creep me out a bit. I love her 1920s lingo, because it reminded me of some of the words in Archie Comics (hah). She tended to use some words a LOT, but I got used to it. As for the secondary characters, I really loved them all. And in this case, they were all vital to the story so I didn't mind that they were always there.  Overall, a vivid rich story with likeable characters and a murder mystery that will take you on a ride all the back to the twenties!
Date published: 2013-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Diviners Wonderful read and looking forward for the sequel. Great story. LOVE it.
Date published: 2013-11-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Chilling & Mysterious Paranormal Read! A creepy introduction to a brand new trilogy, Libba Bray's The Diviners is a chilling and utterly mysterious paranormal read! The sheer size of The Diviners is rather intimidating, but once you start reading the book, you won't want to put it down. Libba Bray is an amazing storyteller! Everyone is hiding a secret close to their heart, and nothing is what it would seem in The Diviners... Evie is an impulsive and attention-loving teenage girl with a knack for theatrics. She may have landed in hot water back in her hometown, but she couldn't be more thrilled that her punishment involves living with her uncle in New York City, where everything is exciting and glamorous. Her uncle Will is the curator of the struggling Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult, and when a horrific death occurs in the city, the police ask for his expertise because they believe it's the work of a killer trying to perform dark rituals. At first, Uncle Will doesn't want Evie to be involved in the investigation, but she knows her gift of psychometry, the ability to see into a person's past when she touches an object, can potentially catch the murderer before they strike again. Undeterred by her uncle's warnings, Evie does what she can to help him and Jericho, his assistant, solve the case, even if it places her right in the path of danger. I originally thought The Diviners would only be told from Evie's point of view, but there are other character perspectives too! Whereas Evie always likes to have fun, Jericho is much more serious and wary to reveal his mysterious past. Sam is a young thief with charm, wit and swagger, and the flirtatious conversations between him and Evie absolutely delighted me. There's definitely more to Sam than meets the eye, and much like Evie has a special ability, he does as well. There are several other characters very much involved in the Diviners world, and as I read along, I couldn't wait to discover how their storylines would intertwine with Evie's. The Diviners is so well-researched, with an attention to detail which brings the novel to life. It certainly felt like I'd been transported to the Roaring Twenties! The danger is far from over for Evie and her new friends, and I can't wait to find out what will happen next in the sequel. You can also read this review at: http://midnightbloomreads.blogspot.ca/2013/02/the-diviners-by-libba-bray.html
Date published: 2013-02-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A New favorite book! I loved this book, i could not put it down! (i read the whole thing in one day). It's creepy, intreguing, funny, and romantic. It made me gasp, sigh, and peek over my shoulder to make sure no one was there. I really can't wait for the 2nd book to come out, which hopefully is very soon (COME ON LIBBA BRAY!). This book is not hard to get into, and has some charming, and unforgetable characters!
Date published: 2013-01-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best of 2012 YA Fiction The Diviners blew me away. The cinematic writing, coupled with likeable but flawed characteres submersed in the history and vocabular of the 1920s in New York City creates a world that is more than believable, but entirely realistic. Steeped in mystery and supernatural, Libba Bray expertly weaves in history, culture, and human nature into this novel while coupling it with a disturbing supernatural killer and young adults with strange abilities. While the plot focusses around Evie, Uncle Will, Jericho, and the humourous but mysterious Sam Lloyd, we also see the development of Memphis, Theta, and Mabel's side plots that will definitely make a more prominent appearance in subsequent books. Libba Bray doesn't shy away from tough subjects and themes. Abusive relationships, death, and struggling with homosexuality in the 1920s, are all themes that lend her story depth and relatability to contemporary audiences that far surpass a single genre. Her thrilling narrative made my heart pump widly when Naughty John made his appearances, and I have to admit this is probably the creepiest book I have ever read. While the story doesn't revolve around the disturbing aspects of the killer, I would certainly warn squeamish readers away from some of the chapters. However, most of the story centres around these characters exploits in New York City. We find Evie at nightclubs, Theta at dance rehearsals, Memphis at a cemetery, and Mabel at socialist rallies. Characters engage in regular activities while they try to discover themselves and their purpose in the shining and bright New York City. Libba Bray also incorporates the less-than positive aspects of the city; poverty, racism, and lasting inequality reveal that although New York City promised many things in its time, it is still rooted in the continuation of differences in class, wealth, and position. While Evie, well off, fashionable, and witty, finds New York everything she wants it to be, characters like Memphis and Sam Lloyd struggle with the deeper issues behind the American Dream. All characters show incredible growth as the story progresses, but they hold onto their flawed humanity, demonstrating the potential for growth in books to come, and also that they are realistic, emotional, and vulnerable people. I never found myself questioning the motives of the characters. They followed the whims of their seemingly natural desires. There was never one point where I found myself thinking at a scene, Evie wouldn't have done that . . . she doesn't think like that. It shows the depth of familiarity the reader builds with the protagonists as the story progresses, a writing skill that few can master as Libba Bray as done. She also builds up little hints, of things to come that make me so excited to read more. I really have no fault in this book. My favourite parts of the novel are when the author offers glimpses into stranger's lives, breaking away from the pressure of the supernaturally-focussed plot and showing little snippets of the daily goings-on of nameless people. It shows how they are affected by the supernatural, or are blissfully ignorant of it. Because of the cinematic quality of Libba Bray's storytelling, I could definitely see this book becoming a TV show or movie. The story arc is executed so divinely (pardon the pun) that the reader is left guessing to the last moment. Simply put, this is YA fiction at its best.
Date published: 2012-12-28
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Disappointed I have read and loved most of Libba Bray's other books, with the exception of Going Bovine. The Gemma Doyle trilogy was very good, and Beauty Queens is just amazingly funny and well written. But this...what is this?? The story felt slow and dragged on, there's a bunch of foreshadowing leading to nothing, and the "big climax" we were led to expect was over in a couple paragraphs, hinting at a bigger climax that never happens. Many of the secondary characters had absolutely no importance in the plot and could have been cut out entirely, except that then there wouldn't have been any story left! I do not recommend this book at all. Do read Beauty Queens, but skip the waste of time that this one is.
Date published: 2012-10-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The 1920's brought to life! This was my first Libba Bray book and I have to just say, it was great! There were a lot of characters in the book, but once I figured out who was who, it easy to follow along. This book is based in the 1920's and was actually my first historical fiction taking place in this era. I really enjoyed it. I felt like my mind was in the 1920's the whole time that I was reading. Libba Bray does and excellent job setting the background and tone of the book. While I really liked this book, I wasn't attached to it to the point that I was unable to put it down, it actually took me a week of picking it up multiple times to finish it (although I did have a very busy week, so that could be it too!). It was fairly easy to pick up on where I was left off and get back into the mindset of the era. As I said, there are multiple characters in The Diviners. My favorites would have to be Evie (of course), Theta, Sam and Jericho. Evie was a character that I liked right away. I loved her snark and attitude and she just made me laugh from the beginning. Then she grows as a character and really starts becoming more responsible and thinks more of others. Theta is impossible not to love, especially after you find out her story. I felt so bad for her, but through it all she is a strong, independent female character. Sam is the good "bad" boy of the book, how can I not love him? Jericho is a complicated character and it took awhile for me to like him. He's another character who has been through a lot and knows that he could lose everything at any time. He's a great guy and clearly loves Evie! There are also many other characters, but it's really not that confusing once you meet them all! Overall, The Diviners is a great story that just pulls you into the era. It's a bit disturbing in some parts (the murders are a little gross) but Libba Bray brings the 1920's to life for you. There is just the right amount of mystery and the romance isn't right in your face (it's barely there even). There is a paranormal aspect, but it's not overdone like it sometimes can be. It was a refreshing read for me that left me wanting more. Although it's a little slow to start out, it's necessary to know the characters individual stories. It's a great read that I will definitely be recommending to others! If you like historical fiction with a touch of paranormal and mystery, this one is for you!
Date published: 2012-09-17

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Editorial Reviews

" [A] lavish supernatural thriller...Wisecracking Evie is a likable heroine, and all signs point to intriguing complications and more malevolent spirits on the rise in succeeding books."
-The Horn Book