Book Review: THE DEVIL MAKE THREE by Tori Bovalino

Title in white on blurred image of book on marbled blue
Genre: Dark Academia Fantasy
Age Range: YA
Star Rating: 4 stars
Series: standalone


Book cover for THE DEVIL MAKES THREE: title in white above book on marbled blue and gold

When Tess and Eliot stumble upon an ancient book hidden in a secret tunnel beneath their school library, they accidentally release a devil from his book-bound prison, and he’ll stop at nothing to stay free. He’ll manipulate all the ink in the library books to do his bidding, he’ll murder in the stacks, and he’ll bleed into every inch of Tess’s life until his freedom is permanent.

Forced to work together, Tess and Eliot have to find a way to re-trap the devil before he kills everyone they know and love, including, increasingly, each other. And compared to what the devil has in store for them, school stress suddenly doesn’t seem so bad after all.

Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.


I wasn’t sure what I’d make of this book going in. Dark Academia is a new genre to me, and the only one I’ve read (which I loved) was without any magic. However, I thoroughly enjoyed reading THE DEVIL MAKES THREE. The best way I can describe it is if you take A SORCERY OF THORNS and then bring into our world and twist it to add a large dash of psychological thriller/horror.

The psychological thriller/horror elements come from the brilliant use of ink. It’s already a well established element of the story, thanks to Tess’ background, and then it becomes a tool of the supernatural in some really gross ways. But you’re never quite sure what’s real and what’s an illusion. I love books that play with that, making you and the character question what’s really happening. Somehow, it makes the threat seem much worse.

There’s a brilliantly creepy library, that starts off feeling like a normal exclusive university library (I think the school is some sort of high school affiliated with a university, and acts like it’s a uni?) However, over the course of the book, its secrets are steadily revealed and it gets a lot less comfortable to be in. But, at the same time, it’s also the sort of library that’s a bookworm’s dream (if it wasn’t for the possessed book.)

The characters are great too. Both Tess and Eliot have really messed up home lives – Tess taking on too much responsibility and Eliot with a terrible father. It means neither trust well, so watching them slowly learn to trust each other (the first step towards a meaningful relationship, in my opinion) was such a fun dynamic as they gradually unfurl. Plus, it make their slow romance feel more believable for me.

Another great experience reading dark academia has certainly made me more inclined to add others to my TBR!

Read my reviews of other books by Tori Bovalino:


2 thoughts on “Book Review: THE DEVIL MAKE THREE by Tori Bovalino

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