Up Jumps the Devil by Michael Poore, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Up Jumps the Devil

Up Jumps the Devil

4.2 14
by Michael Poore
     
 

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A stunningly imaginative, sharp, funny, and slyly tender novel featuring the Devil himself, John Scratch.

He's made of wood. He cooks an excellent gumbo. Cows love him. And he's the world's first love story . . . and the world's first broken heart. Meet the darkly handsome, charming John Scratch, aka the Devil. Ever since his true love, a fellow fallen angel

Overview

A stunningly imaginative, sharp, funny, and slyly tender novel featuring the Devil himself, John Scratch.

He's made of wood. He cooks an excellent gumbo. Cows love him. And he's the world's first love story . . . and the world's first broken heart. Meet the darkly handsome, charming John Scratch, aka the Devil. Ever since his true love, a fellow fallen angel named Arden, decided that Earth was a little too terrifying and violent, John Scratch has been trying to lure her back from the forgiving grace of Heaven. Though neither the wonders of Egypt nor the glories of Rome were enough to keep her on Earth, John Scratch believes he's found a new Eden: America.

John Scratch capitalizes on the bounty of this arcadia as he shapes it into his pet nation. Then, one dark night in the late 1960s, he meets three down-on-their-luck musicians and strikes a deal. In exchange for their souls, he'll grant them fame, wealth, and the chance to make the world a better place. Soon, the trio is helping the Devil push America to the height of civilization—or so he thinks. But there's a great deal about humans he still needs to learn, even after spending so many millennia among them.

Overflowing with imagination, insight, and humor, rippling with history and myth, Up Jumps the Devil is as madcap and charming as the Devil himself.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In his skillfully plotted and richly metaphorical debut novel, Poore sweeps from the beginning of time to a media-obsessed, 21st-century America chronicling the Devil’s quest to “raise the civilizations of earth until they looked down on Heaven.” The Devil’s motivation is not to win the universe, but only his long-lost love, an angel who descended with him from heaven only to leave again because she felt life on Earth was too brutal. In his mission to make Earth a “smarter, shinier, braver place,” the Devil pops up in ancient Egypt, in Ben Franklin’s lab, on the 1776 battlefield beside George Washington, and in the White House with JFK. He also makes an appearance at Woodstock and on his own reality TV show. Though the novel makes many jumps through time and location, the love story at the core holds the work together. In Poore’s hands, the world’s oldest antagonist becomes an unlikely but thoroughly lovable hero. Agent: Michelle Brower, Folio Literary Management. (July)
Daniel Wallace
“The sustained comedy in this hilarious novel is equaled only by its heart, and the myriad ways there are for it to break. I love this book. Michael Poore writes like an angel.”
Patrick deWitt
“Part fable, part warped historical travelogue, Up Jumps the Devil is an inscrutably charming debut novel that poses the question: What if Satan wasn’t that bad a guy? I don’t know where Michael Poore came from, but I sure am glad he’s here.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062064417
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
07/03/2012
Edition description:
Original
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
406,871
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.00(d)

What People are saying about this

Daniel Wallace
“The sustained comedy in this hilarious novel is equaled only by its heart, and the myriad ways there are for it to break. I love this book. Michael Poore writes like an angel.”
Patrick deWitt
“Part fable, part warped historical travelogue, Up Jumps the Devil is an inscrutably charming debut novel that poses the question: What if Satan wasn’t that bad a guy? I don’t know where Michael Poore came from, but I sure am glad he’s here.”

Meet the Author

Michael Poore’s work has appeared in the Southern Review, the Carolina Quarterly, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Fiction, StoryQuarterly, and Glimmer Train and has been nominated for a 2011 Pushcart Prize. His 2009 story “Blood Dauber,” written with Nebula Award nominee Ted Kosmatka, appeared in Asimov’s and has been nominated for the prestigious Sturgeon Award. It also won the Reader’s Choice Award and was selected for inclusion in the 2010 Year’s Best Science Fiction anthology. Up Jumps the Devil is his first novel.

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Up Jumps the Devil 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really struggled to finish this book. Although it did have some funny parts, overall it wasn't really as good as I was expecting based on other reviews.
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LaBoosh More than 1 year ago
Extemely disappointing. I was so stoked to read this book after I read the discription. I was let down. It was not funny at all. I found the author prejudice and boring with little to none knowledge of history. I wish there was a place for negative ratings. I gave it a one just to get my feedback to move.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A different take on the bad guy. A fun adventurous read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It will shock you. Make you laugh. Cringe. Dance and play guitar. You'll want to read passages aloud to anyone who'll listen. Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Up Jumps the Devil, by Michael Poore, follows John Scratch, aka the Devil, through his thirty five year relationships with three band-mates after they sell their souls to him in the late 60’s. Memory goes on to become nationally famous, Fish becomes the head of a massively successful life insurance company, and Zachary revolutionizes the computer industry. Their chronologies are interrupted by scenes of the devil’s past in Rome, Egypt, the New World, and most comically interesting of all the early days of the United States. The back cover will hint that this is a love story, and it is, but in the most basic sense. The devil is madly in love with a fellow angel who cannot stand humanity long enough to remain on earth with him permanently. The desire to make the world a better place for her, to make an earth that rivals her home in heaven, is what motivates the devil’s influences on major world leaders. Although the devil is presented equally as a lover and a fighter he remains the devil that society all knows: without qualms over performing some pretty disgusting and morally offensive acts.  There were about a dozen times in the novel that I forgot I was reading what is essentially a condensed biography of Lucifer. Then he would fornicate with a cow or make a deal for someone’s soul or (my favorite) get shot in the stomach and laugh it off. Satan has never been presented with so many human traits and drives before; he has rarely ever been so relatable. The idea that the devil is seeking to better humankind was what most impressed me. He isn’t out to tempt you away from God but he wants to tempt you with something better than heaven- your own world. However, all the sins that your overly religious great grandma Bertha told you about- drugs, weird sex, experiments on human reanimation- play a heavy hand in the plot. This is meant for mature audiences without a doubt.  Some not so heavy themes were family and morality. The devil is able to live for a time with his lover but they never expand their family, he is unable to form familial tie with humans due to their short lifespan, and his maker/ father kicked him out. Zachary comes from a family broken by tragedy but always has a mother to turn to. No surprise Zachary is one of the few characters with a happy ending. Then on morality, the devil has this clause in the agreement that allows him to terminate you (aka snap his fingers and swallow you up with fire) if you act like a jackass. So if you take the power the devil gives you and take advantage of old ladies of destroy the structures of a country you are eliminated from the gene pool. The devil is some twisted way promotes beneficial progress and good will for all humankind.  I really liked this book, even in its few moments of “oh my gosh he did what?”, because it doesn’t feed into or directly challenge religious teachings while simultaneously providing good entertainment. Up Jumps the Devil also presents the devil in a human light, making me (and other readers) think about how we ourselves act. Just how much better than Satan are we really?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I didn't know what to expect when I first purchased this book but I quickly was hooked and couldn't put it down. It is an original take on a timeless entity that leaves the reader literally befriending and connecting with the devil himself. At the heart of the novel is a beautiful yet tragic love story.