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Publisher Description

The New York Times Book Review • The Washington Post • Publishers Weekly

New Hyde Hospital’s psychiatric ward has a new resident. It also has a very, very old one.

Pepper is a rambunctious big man, minor-league troublemaker, working-class hero (in his own mind), and, suddenly, the surprised inmate of a budget-strapped mental institution in Queens, New York. He’s not mentally ill, but that doesn’t seem to matter. He is accused of a crime he can’t quite square with his memory. In the darkness of his room on his first night, he’s visited by a terrifying creature with the body of an old man and the head of a bison who nearly kills him before being hustled away by the hospital staff. It’s no delusion: The other patients confirm that a hungry devil roams the hallways when the sun goes down. Pepper rallies three other inmates in a plot to fight back: Dorry, an octogenarian schizophrenic who’s been on the ward for decades and knows all its secrets; Coffee, an African immigrant with severe OCD, who tries desperately to send alarms to the outside world; and Loochie, a bipolar teenage girl who acts as the group’s enforcer. Battling the pill-pushing staff, one another, and their own minds, they try to kill the monster that’s stalking them. But can the Devil die?
The Devil in Silver brilliantly brings together the compelling themes that spark all of Victor LaValle’s radiant fiction: faith, race, class, madness, and our relationship with the unseen and the uncanny. More than that, it’s a thrillingly suspenseful work of literary horror about friendship, love, and the courage to slay our own demons.

Praise for The Devil in Silver
“A fearless exploration of America’s heart of darkness . . . a dizzying high-wire act.”—The Washington Post
“LaValle never writes the same book and his recent is a stunner. . . . Fantastical, hellish and hilarious.”—Los Angeles Times
“It’s simply too bighearted, too gentle, too kind, too culturally observant and too idiosyncratic to squash into the small cupboard of any one genre, or even two.”—The New York Times Book Review
“Embeds a sophisticated critique of contemporary America’s inhumane treatment of madness in a fast-paced story that is by turns horrifying, suspenseful, and comic.”—The Boston Globe
“LaValle uses the thrills of horror to draw attention to timely matters. And he does so without sucking the joy out of the genre. . . . A striking and original American novelist.”—The New Republic

Fiction & Literature
August 21
Random House Publishing Group
Penguin Random House LLC

Customer Reviews

Prairie_Dog ,

Modern Horror in a Psychiatric Ward

Victor LaValle spins a tale of horror that may or may not have supernatural components. Pepper is a big guy that accidentally gets in a tussle with three cops. This mistake lands him in the New Hyde Psychiatric Ward for evaluation. The days turn into weeks and months.

While he is a guest of this institution, he becomes familiar with a colorful cast of characters who are also patients or staff. These people are scary, silly, or tragic enough, but New Hyde has a darker secret. There is a Devil that stalks its halls at night. This monster harms or kills patients when no one is around to help them. Pepper and the other patients will either live in fear of this Devil, or face their fears and confront this monster.

Victor LaValle is known for his other works of horror, including the Lovecraftian novella “Ballad of Black Tom.” “The Devil in Silver” is an gripping story, which puts the reader into an all too believable situation that could be set in nearly any mental hospital in America.

Evenc ,

Page Turner!

I couldn't put the book down from the moment I read the 1st page. It had a lot of great moments which lead me to reflect on my own life. It's a must read!

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