The Demon’s Lexicon

FOR MUM AND DAD — I’ve always thought that raising a child must be one of the scariest things in the world. You never know when they’re going to live on ketchup, run away to America, or badmouth you on television. Well, in case I ever try that last one, you can display this to the world: I’m happy, I’m healthy, and I love you. I wrote a book!

You didn’t do so badly. (And the ketchup was delicious.)

Margaret K. McElderry Books

An imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division

1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York 10020

This book is a work of fiction. Any references to historical events, real people, or real locales are used fictitiously. Other names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination, and any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

Copyright © 2009 by Sarah Rees Brennan

All rights reserved, including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Brennan, Sarah Rees.

The demon’s lexicon / Sarah Rees Brennan. — 1st ed.

p. cm. — (Demon’s lexicon; bk. 1)

Summary: Sixteen-year-old Nick and his family have battled magicians and demons for most of his life, but when his brother, Alan, is marked for death while helping new friends Jamie and Mae, Nick’s determination to save Alan leads him to uncover a devastating secret.

ISBN-13: 978-1-4169-9492-3

ISBN-10: 1-4169-9492-0

[1. Demonology — Fiction. 2. Magic — Fiction. 3. Brothers — Fiction.] I. Title.

PZ7.B751645Dem 2009

[Fic] — dc22


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Behind this book was an army saving me (and more importantly, my book) from myself.

Enormous thanks are due to Kristin Nelson, my fabulous agent, for the endless patience and the superpowers. Not to mention her lovely assistant, Sara Megibow.

Enormous thanks and bouquets are due to the entire team at Simon & Schuster for taking a chance on me and doing so many shockingly wonderful things for my book.

Special thanks to my brilliant editor, Karen Wojtyla, for all the wise words — I totally owe you a glass of potatoes in Iwon„reland one day — and to her lovely assistant, Sarah Payne.

To Nicole Russo for the awesome publicity.

To Russell Gordon and Gene Mollica for their combined hard work on my sparkling cover.

To my copyeditor, Valerie Shea, for not letting night fall three times in one day.

And thanks to the amazing people at Simon & Schuster UK, among them Venetia Gosling and Elisa Offord, who have done lovely things for me on my side of the pond.

To Cassandra Clare and Holly Black for all the excellent advice, comforting words, and basically being the coolest writer friends possible, even if Jane Austen were resurrected and wanted to hang out.

To my family and friends in Ireland, England, and America who all had to put up with me during the various stages of this book! Particular thanks to the Irish inner circle, Chiara, Susan, Eleanor, Ashling, and Rachael, who put up with more than most.

To Anna, who lived with me in New York and taught me about publishing and firemen; Pinelopi, who lived with me in England while I wrote the book and was the first Alan fan; and Natasha and Jenny, who lived with me (somehow!) in Ireland while I edited it.

To Kingston Uni — my writing group there and my tutor, Liz Jensen — and to Guildford Library.

To the Debutantes of 2009, ladies who are indeed a feast of awesome.

Thanks to those who have been so wonderful to me on live-journal all these years, and to all the marmalade fish out there.


Ravens in the Kitchen

THE PIPE UNDER THE SINK WAS LEAKING AGAIN. IT WOULDN’T have been so bad, except that Nick kept his favorite sword under the sink.

He rescued it, wiped the steel, and absently tested the edge with his thumb while water flowed out onto the kitchen floor. Once he’d laid it aside, he realized the knees of his jeans were already soaked through.

Alan brought Nick his toolbox.

“Care to lend a hand?” Nick inquired without much hope.

“No, I’m too busy cooking,” Alan said. “You do the heavy lifting around here. I’m more the sensitive intellectual type.”

Nick raised his eyebrows. “Oh, get in the kitchen and bake me a pie, woman.”

He peered into the cupboard again. The pipes made an ominous gurgling sound, and the bottom of the cupboard became the site of the world’s tiniest waterfall.

“I can be a sensitive intellectual type as well,” he said at length. “If the other option is drowning under our sink.”

“Save us all from a watery grave or cook your own dinner. It’s entirely up to you.”

It was a compelling point. Nick could cook his own dinner, but Alan actually worked at being a good cook. He made everything from scratch, and the sizzling sound of food hitting the pan and the sudden rich smell of frying vegetables made his argument for him.

Nick glared, which was effective when dealing with everyone but his brother. Then he took the knife out of his wrist sheath, laying it carefully alongside his sword, rolled up his sleeves, and got to work.

Aside from the sink, this house was pretty good. It was small, the color of cardboard that had been left out in the rain, and exactly like every other house standing in the military lines of the housing estate. Still, each house was separated from its neighbors by a decent distance. There was nobody complaining about strange noises in the night. That was worth any amount of leaks.

On the whole, Nick liked Exeter. There was a statue on the high street that reminded him of a knife, and he was learning to map the city out from that point. It was rare for them to stay in one place long enough for the landmarks to become familiar, but they had been here two months with no danger signs yet. They both had jobs, he was just about getting by at school, and Alan had even had time to find a new crush.

He would be sorry when they had to leave.

The pipe gave a long metallic groan, like an ancient robot about to fall to pieces, and Nick gritted his teeth

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