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The Devil You Know

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The Mercenary Librarians and the Silver Devils are back in The Devil You Know, the next installment of USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Kit Rocha’s post-apocalyptic Action/Romance, with hints of Orphan Black and the Avengers Maya has had a price on her head from the day she escaped the TechCorps. Genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution, t The Mercenary Librarians and the Silver Devils are back in The Devil You Know, the next installment of USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Kit Rocha’s post-apocalyptic Action/Romance, with hints of Orphan Black and the Avengers Maya has had a price on her head from the day she escaped the TechCorps. Genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution, there’s only one thing she can’t do—forget. Gray has finally broken free of the Protectorate, but he can’t escape the time bomb in his head. His body is rejecting his modifications, and his months are numbered. When Maya’s team uncovers an operation trading in genetically enhanced children, she’ll do anything to stop them. Even risk falling back into the hands of the TechCorps. And Gray has found a purpose for his final days: keeping Maya safe. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.


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The Mercenary Librarians and the Silver Devils are back in The Devil You Know, the next installment of USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Kit Rocha’s post-apocalyptic Action/Romance, with hints of Orphan Black and the Avengers Maya has had a price on her head from the day she escaped the TechCorps. Genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution, t The Mercenary Librarians and the Silver Devils are back in The Devil You Know, the next installment of USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Kit Rocha’s post-apocalyptic Action/Romance, with hints of Orphan Black and the Avengers Maya has had a price on her head from the day she escaped the TechCorps. Genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution, there’s only one thing she can’t do—forget. Gray has finally broken free of the Protectorate, but he can’t escape the time bomb in his head. His body is rejecting his modifications, and his months are numbered. When Maya’s team uncovers an operation trading in genetically enhanced children, she’ll do anything to stop them. Even risk falling back into the hands of the TechCorps. And Gray has found a purpose for his final days: keeping Maya safe. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

30 review for The Devil You Know

  1. 4 out of 5

    sil ♡ the book voyagers

    I'm so sad to be doing this but ugh this was not it. This is so different from the first book which I adored. I adored the pace and the plot and the romance so very much in Deal with the Devil. But The Devil You Know has a very slow pace, nothing really is happening and I got to 60% of the book and I couldn't tell you one thing that had happened that was important. Nothing action-y happening in that 60%, no fights, no nothing. The romance development is a slow-burn which I enjoyed tbh what I was I'm so sad to be doing this but ugh this was not it. This is so different from the first book which I adored. I adored the pace and the plot and the romance so very much in Deal with the Devil. But The Devil You Know has a very slow pace, nothing really is happening and I got to 60% of the book and I couldn't tell you one thing that had happened that was important. Nothing action-y happening in that 60%, no fights, no nothing. The romance development is a slow-burn which I enjoyed tbh what I was seeing of the romance was amazing and I love Maya and Gray. But if that was paired up with a plot around it that gave you stuff happening, that'd have been perfect. But because everything was slow, I couldn't read anything. Reading one chapter was already too much!!!! I'm so sad because I loved the first book so much but oh my god this needed a little bit of something else. Maybe I'll return to read the rest of the book when book 3 is out. I'm interested in all the other characters, but yeah I can't continue this one because I'm not enjoying it and I'm just forcing myself to finish it to star other books.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Emmalita

    Kit Rocha’s pragmatic, chaotic optimists have gotten me through the last few years. I’m going to need a bunch of you to buy Deal With the Devil and The Devil You Know, or request that your library buy them, so that I get more of these post-apocalyptic do-gooding murder ladies and sourdough making supersoldier daddies to help me hold onto hope amid the rising tide of authoritarianism, the crumbling wall between church and state, and the increased concentration of wealth into a few hands. I find m Kit Rocha’s pragmatic, chaotic optimists have gotten me through the last few years. I’m going to need a bunch of you to buy Deal With the Devil and The Devil You Know, or request that your library buy them, so that I get more of these post-apocalyptic do-gooding murder ladies and sourdough making supersoldier daddies to help me hold onto hope amid the rising tide of authoritarianism, the crumbling wall between church and state, and the increased concentration of wealth into a few hands. I find myself attracted to books where the characters must struggle for the right to make their own choices and determine their own futures, and the protagonists survive and thrive. I’ve reread Martha Well’s Murderbot Diaries, and Kit Rocha’s books on a constant loop because they articulate my anxieties and then give me the inspiration to keep fighting. If I were a trope, I would be the grumpy one and this book would be the sunshine one. The Mercenary Librarians do more than make sure their community gets books, education, entertainment, and a safe place to go during times of need and extreme weather. They also save children being trafficked, give people alternatives to being ground under the heel of corporations, and will sit on you until you choose hope over despair. TechCorps and the other corporate entities that control the East Coast in the post-apocalypse want to make themselves the only choice for survival. A desperate, dependent populace is more likely to allow TechCorps to modify them to best suit TechCorps needs. The Mercenary Librarians are working to provide options, to give people the freedom to make choices and be human beings, not malleable, replaceable resources. Deal With the Devil established the outline of this found family. Like a sexy superpowered Brady Bunch, Nina and Knox’s blended family can do more good together than they could alone. Nina is the heart of the group, the love that binds everyone together. Knox and the Silver Devils have taken to domesticity like a duck who can kill you 10 ways takes to water. One of the great joys of reading Kit Rocha is that the books build on one another. Though the focus may shift to other characters, the world, the family, and the community are integral to the story. Characters adopted into the family in this book will continue to grow and develop through subsequent books. Maya doesn’t have the physical abilities of the others, but she holds her own among the murder ladies and supersoldiers. Her enhanced brain means she remembers everything she hears, reads, learns, experiences. Sensory overload is a danger for her, but she’s learned to live life and take care of herself. Grey is dying. As the Silver Devils sniper, he is used to keeping a distance and watching the action. Grey wants to use the time he has remaining with Maya and making sure she is safer when he is no longer there to protect her. Grey’s impending death acts as a catalyst for two very careful people to take chances. The romance is slow, careful, and sweet. There are no big betrayals, only a recalibration of expectations. The Devil You Know is not as adventure heavy as Deal With the Devil. It feels like the turning point though. Maya has thought of herself as a refugee, fighting to make a bright corner in an overlooked part of Atlanta. As the story progresses, it becomes clear that bigger changes need to happen and the Mercenary Librarians will be at the heart of it.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Carly

    I think the thing I love (and often need) in this series is that it manages to be some of the most hopeful dystopian fiction I’ve ever read? Even in absolutely despairing situations, with circumstances that threaten to overwhelm this little motley crew of misfits, this found family is always going to look out for each other first in the midst of everything blowing up around them. It’s the kind of optimism that keeps me coming back for more as a reader and leaves me absolutely hungry for the next I think the thing I love (and often need) in this series is that it manages to be some of the most hopeful dystopian fiction I’ve ever read? Even in absolutely despairing situations, with circumstances that threaten to overwhelm this little motley crew of misfits, this found family is always going to look out for each other first in the midst of everything blowing up around them. It’s the kind of optimism that keeps me coming back for more as a reader and leaves me absolutely hungry for the next book. Maya and Gray’s relationship is markedly different from Nina and Knox’s, that simmering slow burn that ultimately crescendoes to something as soulful as it is HOT, and I’m already looking toward the potential sequel bait of Ava and Mace. Kit Rocha can never steer me wrong. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    Unpopular opinion: I liked this book less than the first book in the series. I was disappointed that the first book didn't have more of the mercenary librarians; I mean: books, printing, acquiring books by shooting your way through whatever enemy lines might try to stop them. If you are looking for a romance story set in a dystopian USA, go for it. But it was not my cup of tea. Unpopular opinion: I liked this book less than the first book in the series. I was disappointed that the first book didn't have more of the mercenary librarians; I mean: books, printing, acquiring books by shooting your way through whatever enemy lines might try to stop them. If you are looking for a romance story set in a dystopian USA, go for it. But it was not my cup of tea.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Caitlyn Lynch

    Definitely don’t start this series here: if you haven’t read it already, go back and read Deal With The Devil first, because if you try to dive in here you’re going to be pretty confused about who’s who and what’s going on. There’s a good-sized core cast and the authors don’t really re-introduce them, instead diving pretty much straight into the action. This book focuses on Maya, the savant trained to be a walking memory bank, and Grey, the sniper. We got to learn some more about Maya’s backgroun Definitely don’t start this series here: if you haven’t read it already, go back and read Deal With The Devil first, because if you try to dive in here you’re going to be pretty confused about who’s who and what’s going on. There’s a good-sized core cast and the authors don’t really re-introduce them, instead diving pretty much straight into the action. This book focuses on Maya, the savant trained to be a walking memory bank, and Grey, the sniper. We got to learn some more about Maya’s background, but I did finish the book thinking that Grey was still something of a cipher; he was still just a ‘team player’ and I wanted more of him as an individual. The world-building in this series is truly excellent, and while it’s a dystopian future, what I’m enjoying about the series is that each book builds more hope that things are going to change. The crew get to take down a Big Bad here, though a post-epilogue stinger hints that the Big Bad may have actually been replaced by something worse, which will be fascinating in the next book - presumably Rafe and Dani’s story. I do feel like this one focussed a bit too much on the action and not quite enough on the romance. I do love the whole world and the overarching plot as the crew try to take down TechCorp, but I wanted more of those squishy feelings, especially Grey’s. I’m still thoroughly invested in the plot and I’m keen to keep reading - I think we might have got some hints that Ava will be getting a story after Dani’s, which would be awesome, because Ava is absolutely my favourite character in this series so far. I’ll give this four stars. Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this title via NetGalley.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    Hoo-boy! This is one dangerous, messed up world that I love to spend literary time in. Sure, sure, the dangerous part of it is THROUGH THE ROOF and the people in charge are not good people, but change is in the air, my friends, and I AM HERE FOR IT. As one of the three women working on bringing hope to their little slice of their city, Maya is in a dangerous position. She's not a fighter (or so she thinks) and the only way she can remain safe is if the people she escaped from think she's dead. Bu Hoo-boy! This is one dangerous, messed up world that I love to spend literary time in. Sure, sure, the dangerous part of it is THROUGH THE ROOF and the people in charge are not good people, but change is in the air, my friends, and I AM HERE FOR IT. As one of the three women working on bringing hope to their little slice of their city, Maya is in a dangerous position. She's not a fighter (or so she thinks) and the only way she can remain safe is if the people she escaped from think she's dead. But she's not one to sit idly by when the team uncovers genetically enhanced children being trafficked right under their noses. So she buckles down and starts stretching her wings (and abilities) to help guide that change I mentioned above. Meanwhile, Gray is...well, he's not in a good place. He's on the not-so-slow road to an early demise as his body rejects his implants. He knows the score and he knows there's not much that can be done for him. Yeah, our boy is in a bad place, but he's also not willing to sit idly by, wallowing, and let things happen around him. Those sparks between him and Maya? Yeaaaaah. They're FANTASTIC! Secrets, lies, truth, betrayal, and new allies. Am I excited for those allies? I SURE AM. Maya, Nina, and Dani have become so much more than three women fighting to build a better future for those in their neighborhood. They're on the cusp of revolution and their actions are going to affect so many people down the road. (After a long, bloody battle, if I had to guess.) The Silver Devils might have started their relationship with the ladies for questionable reasons, but THINGS ARE HAPPENING and I couldn't be happier! -Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal

  7. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    So freaking good. I need SO MANY MORE BOOKS!!! RTC

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jess

    So, I probably should have reread book one before jumping into this one cold because I did not remember enough of the world building to skate by and find it as immersive as I know I found the first one. Very much liked the romance, like some of what seems to be being set up for future installments. I just need to remember to reread before reading book three.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Betül

    **ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review** There aren’t many dystopian/post-apocalyptic novels that have the right amount of romance to satisfy me. But this amazing series by Kit Rocha provides me with everything I’m looking for. The balance between action, romance and suspense is perfect. And especially the characters play a big part in making me love this series. Maya and Gray are the main characters in The Devil You Know. Maya is a data courier, which means she remembers ev **ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review** There aren’t many dystopian/post-apocalyptic novels that have the right amount of romance to satisfy me. But this amazing series by Kit Rocha provides me with everything I’m looking for. The balance between action, romance and suspense is perfect. And especially the characters play a big part in making me love this series. Maya and Gray are the main characters in The Devil You Know. Maya is a data courier, which means she remembers everything she ever seen or heard. Which has it good and bad sides. One particular bad guy would love to pick her brains and discover all the secrets she holds. Gray is a one of the best snipers, however he’s having pretty extreme health problems. I really enjoyed seeing Maya and Gray grow closer together. Their relationship was very special and I loved the scenes that was just the two of them. If you’ve read the previous book you know that Maya’s and Gray’s group are now working together. In this book they discover something and they can’t turn a blind eye and start a rescue mission. However, it’s very secret so they need to meet with all their contacts to get information. We meet old and new characters in this book and I loved the intricate world-building and great plot that Kit Rocha have come up with again. I have fallen even more in love with the characters in this book and can’t wait to see what will happen next. I’m pretty vague in this review because I don’t want to spoil anything.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Hal

    arc provided by the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review This second book in the Mercenary Librarians series was definitely a lot slower plot wise and even relationship wise than the first book but I still ended up really loving it! I’m not usually one for slowburn romances and plot but this one was just so sweet that I couldn’t help but adore it. My favourite parts of the book were every moment Gray and Maya had together of course— they’re literally one of the most adorable an arc provided by the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review This second book in the Mercenary Librarians series was definitely a lot slower plot wise and even relationship wise than the first book but I still ended up really loving it! I’m not usually one for slowburn romances and plot but this one was just so sweet that I couldn’t help but adore it. My favourite parts of the book were every moment Gray and Maya had together of course— they’re literally one of the most adorable and perfect couples that I have read about in awhile— but those specific moments where Gray helps train Maya and really shows her that she can do more. That she’s more than capable of being a “superhero” like the rest of the gang are. The two of them really brought out the best in each other and I loved that so much. I was getting kind of bored with how slow the plot was moving because at 60% not much had occurred when I immediately regretted my words when some plot did come into play. Stressful, stressful plot! It made me curious for the next books for sure after a couple of incidents happened near the end. Overall, I had a great time with this as I expected to, I love Kit Rocha’s writing and characters so much. If you’ve read the first book, hold onto your seat because this second book packs a punch by the end! I cannot wait for the third book! 4/5⭐️ TW: death, murder, attempted murder, strangulation, torture, blood, gore, violence, sexually explicit scenes, gun/knife violence, surgery/medical procedures, kidnapping.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Marta Cox

    I have been so impressed by this writing duo and this book didn’t disappoint. I adore that it is set in a dystopian world were ordinary people are fighting to simply survive and yes often that’s in spite of the big , greedy tech giant in charge. Maya was a huge part of that, she’s now just quietly helping those who need it but with the recent arrival of an elite team on the run Maya’s focus is suddenly very confused. She trusts Nina and knows that she has no doubt about the guys but can Maya tru I have been so impressed by this writing duo and this book didn’t disappoint. I adore that it is set in a dystopian world were ordinary people are fighting to simply survive and yes often that’s in spite of the big , greedy tech giant in charge. Maya was a huge part of that, she’s now just quietly helping those who need it but with the recent arrival of an elite team on the run Maya’s focus is suddenly very confused. She trusts Nina and knows that she has no doubt about the guys but can Maya trust herself as her past comes charging back to haunt her ? Ok if you have read the Beyond series then you full well know that the creative endeavours here are raw, visceral and unafraid to be brutally honest. This particular book is a romance between Maya and Grey but I loved that diversity was a part of it. Nothing is thrust down an unsuspecting readers throat but characters who are perhaps unconventional or even downright upfront about their sexuality appear adding richness without taking up story. This mainly was about Maya coming to terms with everything that she could possibly be . I particularly liked seeing Ava start to feel and yes I do believe that she can ! Grey has his own issues, not to mention a blast from the past but my lips are sealed. I thoroughly enjoyed being back in this world and although the romance wasn’t particularly as intense as I wanted this book was definitely a page turner and I am already desperate to get back to this world. This voluntary take is of a copy I requested from Netgalley and my thoughts and comments are honest and I believe fair

  12. 4 out of 5

    SSShafiq

    June 2021 Just finished book 1. Enjoyed it enough that I would like to continue with the series…

  13. 5 out of 5

    Aly is so frigging bored

    This was amazing! I rally wish they would write and publish faster :))

  14. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    I received an e-arc from Net galley in exchange of an honest review. This is the second free-standing novel of the Mercenary Librarians series. In this book we get to know Maya and Grey more as their relationship evolves. People we thought were lost appears and both an internal and external danger seems to be about to unleash chaos. I didn’t enjoy this book as much as the first one but it still is a very good read. The romance between Maya and Grey is beautiful and the fights are thrilling. I’m ex I received an e-arc from Net galley in exchange of an honest review. This is the second free-standing novel of the Mercenary Librarians series. In this book we get to know Maya and Grey more as their relationship evolves. People we thought were lost appears and both an internal and external danger seems to be about to unleash chaos. I didn’t enjoy this book as much as the first one but it still is a very good read. The romance between Maya and Grey is beautiful and the fights are thrilling. I’m excited to see what new Kit Rocha can give us in the next instalment of the Mercenary Librarians.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    I received an advance copy from Tor via Netgalley for review purposes. This in no way influences my review; all words, thoughts, and opinions are my own. Content notes:(view spoiler)[ - Violence - Gun violence - Injury - Nausea - Nonconsensual genetic/body modification - Mention of death - Training of children as supersoldiers - Seizure - Unintentional self harm as stress response (clenching fist so tight fingernails cut palm) - Sensory overload - Reference to alcohol consumption - Torture - Kidnapping - Murde I received an advance copy from Tor via Netgalley for review purposes. This in no way influences my review; all words, thoughts, and opinions are my own. Content notes:(view spoiler)[ - Violence - Gun violence - Injury - Nausea - Nonconsensual genetic/body modification - Mention of death - Training of children as supersoldiers - Seizure - Unintentional self harm as stress response (clenching fist so tight fingernails cut palm) - Sensory overload - Reference to alcohol consumption - Torture - Kidnapping - Murder - Death of parent - Emotional abuse - Mention of pregnancy - Mention of abortion - Casual ableism (stupid, idiot) - Death of loved one, death of friend - Flashbacks - Explicit on page sexual content - Mild gore - Surgery, medical situation (outside hospital/clinic) - Drug use (stimulant to make one stronger/more aggressive) - Intubation (hide spoiler)] WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT ENDING?!? Full review closer to release. Full review: The Devil You Know is one of my most anticipated 2021 releases, and it did not disappoint! Maya may not have super strength like Nina or being a former supersoldier like Dani, but she has forks and she’s not afraid to stab people with them! I love how we see her show her strength and capability in so many ways outside strength or violence. I also love how she takes care of her community and the ways she uses knowledge to build the community to be stronger. Gray is the sniper for the Silver Devils, but he’s also a squishy marshmallow - at least where Maya is concerned. He recognizes her strength and capability, and helps her cultivate her strengths to be a greater asset. He is also dying as his body rejects the implant he has that gives him many of his superhuman capabilities, so he’s trying his hardest both to not fall for Maya and not have Maya fall for him. The Deal with the Devil was a Roadtrip adventure, and I really enjoyed how The Devil You Know was more focused on community and the home Nina and family has built. There are so many excellent moments throughout this book that continue to highlight how exemplar Kit Rocha is at building found/chosen family and showcasing the strength of those bonds. The epigraphs throughout were also excellent and added so much mystery and intrigue to the story. And I still have questions!! Rocha is for sure going to need to write more books in this series - I need to see Conall get his HEA, especially as he keeps getting hurt! I also want all the information on Ava because she intrigues me to no end. All in all, this book is as excellent and did a wonderful job continuing the Mercenary Librarians series, and leaves me eagerly awaiting more of this chosen family and the ways their little community creates big, positive changes in their world!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lauren loves llamas

    Content warnings: (view spoiler)[violence (including gun violence and death), torture (on-page and in memories), PTSD, grief, kidnapping (of children), medical experimentation (in the past), death of a close friend (in the past) (hide spoiler)] I’m a longtime Kit Rocha reader, so of course I was beyond excited to see the next book in the Mercenary Librarians series. I went in expecting lots of found family goodness, steamy scenes and maybe a little murder-by-fork. And, oh boy, did I ever love thi Content warnings: (view spoiler)[violence (including gun violence and death), torture (on-page and in memories), PTSD, grief, kidnapping (of children), medical experimentation (in the past), death of a close friend (in the past) (hide spoiler)] I’m a longtime Kit Rocha reader, so of course I was beyond excited to see the next book in the Mercenary Librarians series. I went in expecting lots of found family goodness, steamy scenes and maybe a little murder-by-fork. And, oh boy, did I ever love this book! As a warning, this is the second in the series, so there will be spoilers for the first book. It’s basically super soldier Brady Bunch in Five Points these days. Knox and the rest of the Silver Devils have settled in well with Nina, Maya and Dani, enough that they’re deep in construction of a new living space for them, complete with a med clinic. Everything seems almost idyllic, until an unexpected mission outcome leads to two unwelcome surprises. The first? Gray’s rejecting his implant, and his diagnosis is terminal. Even worse, there’s evidence that Tobias Richter, the head of Executive Security, believes that the Silver Devils are alive. Since Richter is the person who personally killed her patron and then tried to force Maya to reveal her secrets, the crew is understandably worried about drawing attention to the fact that Maya is alive as well. And then there’s the chemistry between Maya and Gray whenever they’re near each other… But with Gray’s death looming over them all, is it worth the risk to Maya’s heart to fall for him? “Uh, have you met me? I mock evil clones to their faces and stab bad guys with forks. I don’t do serious.” Maya was one of my favorite characters in the first book, so it’s no surprise that I absolutely loved her. Maya’s a data courier, genetically enhanced to have perfect recall of anything she’s heard, seen or read. All her life she’s been carefully sheltered and spoiled – at least, until her patron was killed and Nina rescued her – and told that too much experiences or knowledge will hasten her brain’s eventual failure. She gets overwhelmed sometimes by too much auditory or sensory input. But these things aren’t viewed as a burden or a hindrance by her friends, she’s just her, and like the rest of the motley crew, she’s accepted for who she is and on her own terms. But she still feels like an afterthought. Sure, her memory allows her to basically memorize repair manuals, meaning she’s the go-to person for fixing everything that breaks, from A/Cs to ovens, and her thirst for knowledge means that she’s constantly looking for new ways to streamline their bootleg library (now including 2030s container gardening DIY books!), but she’s not a BAMF like everyone else. Maya is surrounded by super soldiers, while she calls herself a glorified filing cabinet for the secrets too dangerous to put down on paper. Of course Nina and Dani – and the Silver Devils – have trained Maya to not be helpless, but compared to their feats of super soldier strength, she’s basically powerless. It’s Gray who recognizes that her abilities may have a tactical advantage, and who unlocks the door to her growing beyond the cage that was built around her, the one she thought existed for “her own good.” “Gray had sacrificed so much for the right to decide how he lived his life. He had the right to decide how he died, too.” Gray was the orphan kid who wasn’t good enough to get picked up by any of the folks stopping by the orphanage to find apprentices, until finally his only option was joining up with TechCorps. That feeling dogs his steps, still, even after he’s proved himself repeatedly with the Silver Devils, and it extends to his hesitation to start a relationship with Maya. The pining level is absolutely sky high, but it’s adorable to watch the two of them navigate their attraction, especially Maya. She works herself up into the awkward crush stage, which always dissipates when she’s around Gray, because being herself with him is natural for her. And if that isn’t the best thing in the world, I don’t know what is. “Knox surveyed them all, looking happy enough to burst. So did Nina, for that matter. Just a proud mom and dad overseeing their misfit band of rogue supersoldiers, fugitive criminals, evil clones, and one random [redacted].” This would not be a Kit Rocha book, and I would not love it so much, if not for the focus on found family. Whether it’s pulling off another heist or just gathering around the dinner table, they’re one big family now, and that means dealing with occasional stabbings and supersoldier moods. They accept each other for what they are, broken messes and all, and the amount of love and caring they each give to the others is so sweet. Despite this being a dystopian book about a corporation who considers starving the city a reasonable form of control, this book is ultimately hopeful. Maya muses that TechCorps thinks that being compassionate is the enemy of “progress” when everything in her life in Five Points has show her the opposite. There’s also a lot about justice, about how to make real change when the world is so broken. For instance, Birgitte, Maya’s boss, is someone I found hard to empathize with to begin with (I mean, dragging an 8-year-old into a rebellion where you’re almost certainly going to die in a horrible way will do that) but the epigraphs in this book softened me a little to her. Intentions aren’t everything, but she was trying to fix things from within a broken system. And that’s basically what Maya and her family are doing every day, on a smaller scale. “I’ll keep your secrets. You keep mine.” Besides Birgitte, it was wonderful to have a POV chapter from Ava’s POV. Ava, the “psychotic evil genius clone,” who refers to her kidnapping of a woman in the previous book “inconveniencing” her. Her sense of morality is all shades of grey, but she’ll move heaven and earth to not disappoint Nina. What can I say, I’m trash for the morality chain trope. There’s also opportunities to catch up with Nina and Knox, to explore how the events of this book affect their relationship and that with their teams. As for new characters, without being too spoilery, I also want more Savitri and Adam! “Rescuing people, faking their deaths, taking them in, and convincing them to help her build community resources. Real dastardly criminal shit.” The action takes a while to get rolling; there’s a lot of buildup not just in the romance but in the rest of the plot. But that’s how many of the new and extremely interesting characters (and places) were introduced, so that didn’t bother me. Plus, the payoff (minor spoiler: (view spoiler)[Ava and Nina kicking butt together!!! (hide spoiler)] ) was well worth it. The shape of what will happen in the last (sob) book of the trilogy is taking shape, and it looks amazing. “You don’t know how many forks I’m packing.” His reply came in a whisper. “I always assume that answer is enough to get the job done.” Overall, I absolutely adored this book and I’m already champing at the bit for the next book, which I’m guessing will be Dani and Rafe based on the setup. Definitely one of my top-ten books of the year!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    2.5 stars I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley and am voluntarily posting a review. All opinions are my own. The Devil You Know is the second in Kit Rocha’s Mercenary Librarians series. It technically works as a stand-alone, but I think the intricacies of the character relationships might make sense and matter to you more if you have read the first book. I read it, and I can’t for the life of me remember much about most of these people, because I read it about a year ago. This book 2.5 stars I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley and am voluntarily posting a review. All opinions are my own. The Devil You Know is the second in Kit Rocha’s Mercenary Librarians series. It technically works as a stand-alone, but I think the intricacies of the character relationships might make sense and matter to you more if you have read the first book. I read it, and I can’t for the life of me remember much about most of these people, because I read it about a year ago. This book falls into the trap I often see where authors try to combine SFF with romance in some significant way: you want to have the main couple at the center, but you also want to have this wider scope of what’s going on in your world and with other characters, and an imbalance in the “formula” results in the book not working. The “main” chapters follow Maya and Grey as they’re engaged in both the external plot and falling in love in the process, and it’s nice, if a bit slow. But part of what slows it down even more is the constant interjection of chapters from practically every other cast member’s POV. You get Knox and Nina from book 1, and it was kinda nice to see them. But then, there’s Dani, Rafe, Mace, Richter, Ava, Tessa. I understand wanting to flesh out the secondary characters, maybe give insight into the previous leads or tease the leads of the next book. But this felt like overkill. And when some side characters start to feel more important than the characters you’re supposedly focusing on…I just don’t know how I’m supposed to process all of this. I do have hope for the next book, especially as I have an idea who might be the focus, based on how much they stole the show, and while book one also had a few extra POVs, the scattered nature of the narrative was unique to this book. I would still encourage those excited for this one to pick it up, as my opinion is definitely in the minority, and there are others who enjoyed this.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Dot & Needle

    I used to devour romantic suspense but haven’t really read much in the sub genre in recent years. However, the second instalment of the Mercenary Librarians series, The Devil You Know by Kit Rocha brings back all the love I had for this genre! If you love badass characters and competence porn, this book is for you! Maya, our heroine, doesn’t have the superpowered physicality of the other Librarians, but her perfect recall means that’s she retains everything she’s ever seen and heard. This is use I used to devour romantic suspense but haven’t really read much in the sub genre in recent years. However, the second instalment of the Mercenary Librarians series, The Devil You Know by Kit Rocha brings back all the love I had for this genre! If you love badass characters and competence porn, this book is for you! Maya, our heroine, doesn’t have the superpowered physicality of the other Librarians, but her perfect recall means that’s she retains everything she’s ever seen and heard. This is useful in a dangerous post-apocalyptic world where Maya’s life is in danger day to day, but comes with a risk of sensory overload. However, she learns to live life and since meeting Gray, our stoic with everyone but her sniper hero, Maya becomes more open to testing her limitations. But time is running out for Gray as his body is rejecting his cybernetic implant and the MCs cling to spend the remaining time together. All the while, they are racing to save trafficked children from an evil corporation. Needless to say, this book is ACTION PACKED! I really enjoyed Maya’s self-discovery and Gray’s unflinching care for her despite his own mortality was so beautiful. Their interactions the whole book made me smile as it was so adorable to see this badass assassin practically swoon every time Maya smiled at him. The whole case of secondary characters were also amazing and I’m champing on the bit to get an Ava (the most murderous of them all) book! #kiterocha #mercenarylibrarians #thedevilyouknow #romanticsuspense #bookmages

  19. 4 out of 5

    Badh

    I love Kit Rocha. I have read all of the books published by this talented author. The world building is just totally amazing. The characters are so real that you feel like you might right into them when you are just out and about. The setting is just really rich and you can practically see and hear everything. So, this is not really a standalone. You should definitely read the first one so that you are aware of what is going on with the story and the main characters. The prime couple in this is I love Kit Rocha. I have read all of the books published by this talented author. The world building is just totally amazing. The characters are so real that you feel like you might right into them when you are just out and about. The setting is just really rich and you can practically see and hear everything. So, this is not really a standalone. You should definitely read the first one so that you are aware of what is going on with the story and the main characters. The prime couple in this is Maya and Gray. We do get chapters and peeks into other people, but they are the main thrust. I like Maya. She is really a sweet soul, a little tortured maybe, but very sweet. She thinks that her amazing brain is going to implode at some point, so she tries to limit the stimulation that she gets. But then there's Gray. She knows that she likes him, but she is afraid because of overstimulation, but Gray. Gray is definitely a very stoic soldier. He does what he is supposed to. He hides everything, including the fact that he's rejecting his implant. When his secret is found out, everyone is upset. Especially Maya. These two are just amazing on their own, and I think that they are great together. Gray really does support Maya so well. There is just so much there. I think that he gives her something that no one else has ever given her, even Dani and Nina, who love her so much. I can't wait for the next book.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Louise H - ⭐ Life in the Book Lane Reviews ⭐

    Thank you to Netgalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge for an arc of this book. I have been a fan of these writing duo since discovering their Beyond series in 2016, so when I saw this arc available I couldn't pass by. I haven't read the first book, Deal with the Devil, but enough information was woven into the story for me to be able to understand the setting and characters. Whilst I definitely enjoyed this book, it seemed to lack the same emotional punch that their prior work had. Whilst I loved the st Thank you to Netgalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge for an arc of this book. I have been a fan of these writing duo since discovering their Beyond series in 2016, so when I saw this arc available I couldn't pass by. I haven't read the first book, Deal with the Devil, but enough information was woven into the story for me to be able to understand the setting and characters. Whilst I definitely enjoyed this book, it seemed to lack the same emotional punch that their prior work had. Whilst I loved the storytelling of this dystopian romantic suspense, there were a few elements that detracted from my overall enjoyment, one of which was that the pace felt very slow. The story frequently lacked energy, I could put it down after a few chapters and not be desperate to jump back into the story. The major issue was that there was simply too much happening in the story, resulting in no clear focal point. Was the story about Maya and Gray? About Dani and Rafe? Was it about Rainbow? The missing children? The return of (view spoiler)[Mace (hide spoiler)] ? Gray's malfunctioning implant? Maya's possible overload issues? I don't mind a good sub-plot or two that enhance the main story, but here it felt as though they were all competing for top spot. And there were just so many that we jumped haphazardly from one problem to another but it often felt as though no headway was being made on ANY of them. There were also too many different points of view, whilst I really liked Maya and Grey it took me far too long to "feel" their connection to one another. Maybe my expectations for this book were just too high, maybe my reading tastes have changed or perhaps it just wasn't as good as previous books. That said, the plotting is impressive, foreshadowing is cleverly designed to raise more questions than answers. Secrets are revealed that only generate more mystery and throw another problem into the mix. One thing I did love were the Maya/Gray scenes, both characters were incredibly easy to care for and had they remained a clear focus of the book, as should have been the case since it's a romance, this could easily have been a 4 or even 5 star read for me.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    I received an advanced copy from Tor in exchange for an honest review. Ohhh this series continues to hit all my sweet spots as a reader and a librarian. Super-smart soldiers and mental superheroes? Community-focused librarians? A scanner that can scan a book without opening it? SIGN ME THE HELL UP. While in the first book we followed Nina, the super-soldier librarian with a heart of gold, in this it's Maya, a former data courier with a memory like a steel trap (literally). She remembers everything I received an advanced copy from Tor in exchange for an honest review. Ohhh this series continues to hit all my sweet spots as a reader and a librarian. Super-smart soldiers and mental superheroes? Community-focused librarians? A scanner that can scan a book without opening it? SIGN ME THE HELL UP. While in the first book we followed Nina, the super-soldier librarian with a heart of gold, in this it's Maya, a former data courier with a memory like a steel trap (literally). She remembers everything she's heard or read, and her brain sometimes seems like it'll shut down from the amount of input she constantly handles. She's drawn to Gray, one of the supposedly-dead Silver Devils squad that's moved into the neighboring warehouse. Between his voice and his eyes, Maya finds it too easy to lose herself and her boundaries in him even when there's feet between them. In the second installment of the Mercenary Librarians, the two teams have begun working together, and it opens with them attempting to rescue children from a future like the one planned for them: fighting for TechCorps and obeying orders unquestionably, only to be killed at the end of their usefulness. When the hit goes wrong and someone's shot, Maya realizes she has to improve her training, and Grey takes her on. Frightened of how she feels about him and how it can hurt her, Maya can't help but return over and over again. And Gray knows he has a ticking bomb in his body as his implant chip is slowly being rejected, leading to certain death. As the librarians and the devils try to scour out the plots to steal children, Gray and Maya must also look at what they might have and what they might lose together. Y'all, I think I'm in love with Maya. I love a good nerd who finally recognizes her power, and Maya's got it in spades. This was the community-focused read I needed after 18 months of people refuse to do the least to save their neighbor.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rose

    WOW! What an adventure! Most of this story was about Maya (also known as Marjorie), and to a slightly lesser degree, her very own "devil", Gray. Along with them we met or, at the very least, reconnected with the rest of Maya's "family" and the Silver Devils. Maya's story was sad, contemptible, and, finally, beautiful. And a lot of other things in between. There were so many things about her to love. She is just good all the way to her core. And her relationship with everyone around her proves th WOW! What an adventure! Most of this story was about Maya (also known as Marjorie), and to a slightly lesser degree, her very own "devil", Gray. Along with them we met or, at the very least, reconnected with the rest of Maya's "family" and the Silver Devils. Maya's story was sad, contemptible, and, finally, beautiful. And a lot of other things in between. There were so many things about her to love. She is just good all the way to her core. And her relationship with everyone around her proves that at every turn. And when she figured out that she had superpowers, just like all the people around her, I was so happy for her it literally made me cry. And there were a few other times I cried as well. This story has so many of the elements that fans of Kit Rocha are used to finding in their books. And I can't wait to see where these authors plan to go with quite a few of the characters. There were so many that we met, so many that we already knew, most of all I can't wait to see what happens with Ava, Conall, Tessa, Dani and Rafe, and several others. And most especially, I am excited to see how Maya and Gray fulfill their destiny! I received a digital copy for review from Net galley.com

  23. 4 out of 5

    Shirley

    I’ve been a fan of Kit Rocha for a while now, so the fact that this infamous writing duo didn’t make anything easy for the characters in The Devil You Know should have come as no surprise. Although Maya and Gray were at the center of The Devil You Know, there was a lot more going on. All of which revolved around the TechCorp. Maya, her friends and the Silver Devils may have escaped from them, but that didn’t mean that they were safe. Danger lurked around every corner and not everything was as it I’ve been a fan of Kit Rocha for a while now, so the fact that this infamous writing duo didn’t make anything easy for the characters in The Devil You Know should have come as no surprise. Although Maya and Gray were at the center of The Devil You Know, there was a lot more going on. All of which revolved around the TechCorp. Maya, her friends and the Silver Devils may have escaped from them, but that didn’t mean that they were safe. Danger lurked around every corner and not everything was as it seemed. Nothing was held back in the evil that existed in this new world. Maya and her friends were right to be cautious, but they protected those that they counted as theirs at any cost. The romance between Maya and Gray was a very slow burn, but given the characters it really couldn’t have happened any other way. This was a story that was destined to end in heartbreak and hoping for more than the inevitable outcome would have been enough to keep the pages turning. But of course there was much more to the story. Secrets, danger, revelations… yeah, a lot more. Readers not only got alternating POVs from Maya and Gray, but a few more voices as well. I loved getting to know all these characters a little bit better. I also enjoyed watching them grow as characters and learn more about each other as well as themselves. The Devil You Know didn’t exactly end in a cliff hanger, but there’s obviously more to come. Especially if you read beyond the epilogue. Yikes! Let’s just say that Dance with the Devil can’t come soon enough. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of The Devil You Know. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Beth P

    I love this book. It’s a slow burn romance that is chock full of hope, tenderness, and found family. It gave me ALL the feelz! A description of the plot might reveal too many spoilers from the first book, but if you are looking for a near-future post-apocalyptic sci-fi series that will make you feel good, The Mercenary Librarians are for you. Please let this series keep going! I want the stories of every single character. I’m pretty sure Dani and Rafe are next, but I also want more Connall and L I love this book. It’s a slow burn romance that is chock full of hope, tenderness, and found family. It gave me ALL the feelz! A description of the plot might reveal too many spoilers from the first book, but if you are looking for a near-future post-apocalyptic sci-fi series that will make you feel good, The Mercenary Librarians are for you. Please let this series keep going! I want the stories of every single character. I’m pretty sure Dani and Rafe are next, but I also want more Connall and Luna and [redacted in case you haven’t read book 1] and [redacted in case you haven’t read book 1]!!!! I definitely recommend starting with Deal With the Devil (Mercenary Librarians #1) so that you get all of the background as it will provide a lot more nuance than the in-book recollections. Source of book: Purchased by me

  25. 5 out of 5

    N.G. Peltier

    ARC review This was one of my most anticipated books. I loved book one and was looking forward to this. I must say I do have mixed feelings though. While I loved all these characters, and Maya and Gray’s relationship, I felt like there were just too many POVs here! Now I’m used to Kit Rocha books having POV of the characters, other than the MCs, to set up for the book to follow, and who the MCs would be for that. But there were a bunch of other characters that had their own POVs here other than M ARC review This was one of my most anticipated books. I loved book one and was looking forward to this. I must say I do have mixed feelings though. While I loved all these characters, and Maya and Gray’s relationship, I felt like there were just too many POVs here! Now I’m used to Kit Rocha books having POV of the characters, other than the MCs, to set up for the book to follow, and who the MCs would be for that. But there were a bunch of other characters that had their own POVs here other than Maya and Gray and Dani and Rafe (who I’m assuming are book 3???). It distracted from the main romance in my opinion. Why did we need we really need a POV for Nina, Knox, (redacted), (redacted) and (redacted)??? There's a POV at the end that isn't Maya or Gray and I'll accept we needed that one for the LE GASP ending While Maya absolutely was an amazing character and her and Gray’s story was a lil heart-breaking for reasons that eventually worked out cuz we got the HEA, it still felt like we didn’t need to also get into allll these other characters heads. While that was great for making the book read like a cool, multi ensemble cast action movie/series it still took away some of the shine of the MCs. And just like the previous book once again Dani and Rafe are kinda stealing the show for me??? I looove a feral female character who will literally stab someone, and maybe even her love interest lol. So I’m super excited for their book. So to sum up: Maya's mind? Amazing. Gray, brooding excellence. All these extra POVs? Could've gotten rid of most of those… THAT ENDING?? Makes me want book 3 now!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Carissa

    dnf. Not gonna lie, but this one felt so different than book 1. It's been over a year since I read the first book and I forgot a lot of the characters! After only reading a few chapters, it wasn't grabbing me. At. ALL. Unfortunately I don't think I'll continue. dnf. Not gonna lie, but this one felt so different than book 1. It's been over a year since I read the first book and I forgot a lot of the characters! After only reading a few chapters, it wasn't grabbing me. At. ALL. Unfortunately I don't think I'll continue.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    The librarians are back. When they stumble upon a group selling cloned kids, the gang jump into action while personal attractions flare. ARC from NetGalley

  28. 4 out of 5

    BoxerLover2

    Do you want to read a story where the bad guy actually suffers consequences? Read this book. Do you want to read a story where a group of genetically altered and very smart super soldiers work together to improve the life of their neighbors? Read this book. Do you want to read a slow-burn romance? Read this book. Do you want to read a story where consent is sexy AF? Read this book. Do you want to read a story that contains found-family, references to quantum physics, and industrial strength food deh Do you want to read a story where the bad guy actually suffers consequences? Read this book. Do you want to read a story where a group of genetically altered and very smart super soldiers work together to improve the life of their neighbors? Read this book. Do you want to read a slow-burn romance? Read this book. Do you want to read a story where consent is sexy AF? Read this book. Do you want to read a story that contains found-family, references to quantum physics, and industrial strength food dehydrators? Read this book. Fans of The Beyond Series should read this book for the well buried Easter Egg. I guess what I am trying to say is READ THIS BOOK. Note to Tor: I need more stories in this post apocalyptic dystopian world of Atlanta. ARC review copy via NetGalley

  29. 4 out of 5

    Seantheaussie

    To be honest, I couldn't wait for it to end.😥 The magic in this dystopian series, which needs to be read in order, was in book 1 where the found family was formed, rather than here where two of them got together. I won't be continuing the series. To be honest, I couldn't wait for it to end.😥 The magic in this dystopian series, which needs to be read in order, was in book 1 where the found family was formed, rather than here where two of them got together. I won't be continuing the series.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amy A

    3.5 The Librarians and the Silver Devils have settled into a content family-style dynamic. However, that doesn't negate the fact that there's still work to be done. Maya still has a price on her head from when she escaped from TechCorps with all their secrets and the keys to a revolution. Despite this, when the group discovers a group of genetically enhanced children is being sold to the highest bidder, they'll stop at nothing to thwart whoever is behind the scheme. But this also has the potentia 3.5 The Librarians and the Silver Devils have settled into a content family-style dynamic. However, that doesn't negate the fact that there's still work to be done. Maya still has a price on her head from when she escaped from TechCorps with all their secrets and the keys to a revolution. Despite this, when the group discovers a group of genetically enhanced children is being sold to the highest bidder, they'll stop at nothing to thwart whoever is behind the scheme. But this also has the potential to bring attention to Maya. Gray is determined to keep Maya safe no matter the cost. And with his implant modifications acting up, he knows that cost might be pretty high, as in, his life. But where Maya is concerned he'd gladly sacrifice himself, little does he know Maya feels the same way about Gray. Both of them will fight to the end to keep what they've found with one another. Compared to the first book, I felt like this book was a little bit slower to progress. I think it's because that ever-present tension between the separate groups has settled now that they've formed one trusted group working together. Instead, this time around I feel like we almost get the opposite pacing of the first book with a lot of quieter, contemplative moments with a few action sequences peppered throughout. Make no mistake, however, the story does slowly build to a rather impressively explosive ending. In that way, we got to see more of the kind of everyday operations that the Librarians are involved in - their interactions with their "patrons" as the case may be. I kind of liked seeing the day-to-day, but also make no mistake this is definitely still a dystopian future with a maniacal megacorporation lording over the regular people. In fact, I'm kind of hoping the next book in the series gives us some more focus on what happens up in The Hill - where TechCorp houses its "lair". One of the bid standouts for me was just the character dynamics. I loved seeing the group interactions, loved seeing how they've created this family. I think that Kit Rocha has really nailed the way that they format their books in that this is definitely Maya and Gray's story, but they're so good about giving readers points of view from each other main character that you never feel like you've lost out on the previous characters like often happens in a series that features a different couple with each book. Nina and Knox are still so present, and Rafe and Dani are hard to ignore. Their build-up has been done especially well and really makes me excited for their book. Overall, while the story itself took a bit for me to get into this time around, it built up slowly enough that by the finish I was definitely not ready for things to end. I'm hoping this series will go further than just a trilogy. There's certainly some very interesting setups happening. I'd say if you enjoyed the first book, you'll like this one as well. *ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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