MP!’s first Book Battle: Daughters Unto Devils VS. Rot and Ruin

It’s Halloweek here at MP! and as part of day 4 of this fiendishly fun event, we’re having our first Book Battle between two terrifying reads: Amy Lukavics’ psychological horror ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ VS. Jonathon Maberry’s zombie dystopian ‘Rot & Ruin’.

2 books. 1 victor. Let’s go.

  1. Battle of the Blurbs

We’ll start this Book Battle with our first meeting with any book: the blurb. When trying to find the perfect book to creep yourself out with at Halloween, you want something gripping, with obvious frightening flare. It’s got to grab you from that back cover.

Rot & Ruin:

In the zombie-infested, post-apocalyptic America where Benny Imura lives, every teenager must find a job by the time they turn fifteen or get their rations cut in half. Benny doesn’t want to apprentice as a zombie hunter with his boring older brother Tom, but he has no choice. He expects a tedious job whacking zoms for cash, but what he gets is a vocation that will teach him what it means to be human.

Daughters Unto Devils:

When the Verners arrive at their new home, a large cabin abandoned by its previous owners, they discover the inside covered in blood. And as the days pass, it is obvious to Amanda that something isn’t right on the prairie. She’s heard stories of lands being tainted by evil, of men losing their minds and killing their families, and there is something strange about the doctor and his son who live in the woods on the edge of the prairie. But with the guilt and shame of her sins weighing on her, Amanda can’t be sure if the true evil lies in the land, or deep within her soul.

Winner: Daughters Unto Devils

For gripping blurbs, Amy Lukavics story of a house soaked in blood and a baby that won’t stop crying definitely has the edge.

2. Which Cover?


Winner: Daughters Unto Devils

As amazing as Rot & Ruin’s cover is, Daughters Unto Devils has that T-Swizzle ‘Style’ vibe going on and we can’t resist. Plus that haunting cabin in the shadows and the gory red tones have a definite scary flare.

3. Shriek Off

Both of these books are excellent choices for Halloween, ‘Rot & Ruin’ a story about the undead, and ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ all blood and unhinged sanity. But which one is scarier?

Winner: Daughters Unto Devils

We think Amy Lukavics has a TERRIFYING imagination. Creepy, gory and not without a fair dosage of un-see-able images, ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ takes the cake on this one. ‘Rot & Ruin’ has its scary moments, but it’s more of a thriller than a straight-up scream-inducer.

4. First Lines

Rot & Ruin: Ben Imura couldn’t hold a job, so he took to killing.”

Daughters Unto Devils: “The first time I lay with the post boy was a Sunday, and I broke three commandments to do it.”

Winner: Rot & Ruin

This one was TOUGH. Both sucked us in from the start, but for this one, we’re going to go with Rot & Ruin. With that Supernatural feel (“Saving people. Hunting things. The family business.”) and the question of what kind of killing, Jonathon Maberry takes the win this round.

5. Goodreads Test.

Rot & Ruin: 4.1

Daughters Unto Devils: 3.7

Winner: Rot & Ruin

With .4 points above Amy Lukavics’ horror, Rot & Ruin takes the win.

6. MP! fave

In regards to general enjoyment levels,

When it comes to general enjoyment levels, we’re going to have to go with ‘Rot & Ruin’, though it was a close call. ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ is truly haunting, and a real psychological horror, but while it’s ending left us stunned and utterly gutted, ‘Rot & Ruin’ definitely has more of a growing effect, spanning 5 books and being much longer. Plus, ‘Rot & Ruin’, to us, just felt more hopeful, which appealed to us to.

Winner: Rot & Ruin

It was a close call, but we’re going to have to go with ‘Rot & Ruin’. ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ is truly scary and haunts long after the last page, but ‘Rot & Ruin’, to us, felt more hopeful, more inspiring.

Plus, we totally loved this line from Maberry: “Next time you’re staring at a girl’s boobs, look up. You’ll be shocked to learn it, but there’s going to be a face up there. Nose, mouth, eyes. And behind the eyes is an actual person.”


Honestly, both of these books are wonderful horrors and great picks for a night-in reading on Halloween. If you’re looking to scare yourself silly though, we’d say go with the chilling ‘Daughters Unto Devils’ and if you’re more after an adventure story with thrills and frights, go ‘Rot & Ruin’ – and have a fab Halloween either way.

If you fancying figuring out which is better yourself, have a little help from us here at MP!. We’re giving you the chance to win all  books in the Rot & Ruin series by Jonathon Maberry, just because it’s our Halloweek. Your welcome.

This competition is now CLOSED. Congrast to our winners: @wise_fangirl, @DxmetriaMahone, @opinionful, @MortalAcademy & @CharlotteElizzy!

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Written by Laura Fulton

Book Channel Editor at MaxPop! Have a thing for the sea and pretty paperbacks. Saved by amazing grace.

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