RaveThe New RepublicSplit into seven interlocking sections and told over centuries, the novel is an inventive exploration of which stories we prioritize and which we push down, in our popular hunger for narratives of crime, justice, and redemption. Darnielle marshals his many interests toward something approaching social critique ... Devil House is at times an investigation, a memoir, a piece of reportage, and, in its most elusive moment, the story of a British king by the name of Gorbonian, written in the sort of faux–old English favored by writers of low-rent swords and sorcery ... This is fundamentally a novel about whose perspectives we gravitate toward and whose we bury when telling stories about crime and suffering ... The novel’s best moments describe extremes. Darnielle expertly handles the violent scenes, presenting the death and dismemberment in a cool, controlled voice, heightening the horror by his refusal to obscure it ... but I wasn’t sure I’d learned anything new about Jesse at all. He had been consumed entirely by what Parul Sehgal recently termed \'the Trauma Plot,\' that tendency writers have lately taken toward prioritizing suffering in place of characterization ... Jesse is all wound, no person ... Or so I felt until the novel’s final section ... It’s a formally audacious [book], a work of fiction-presented-as-truth nested inside this larger fictional project that serves, ultimately, as an exploration of writing fictionalized reality.