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In modern-day England, brothers Nick and Alan try to live a normal life. They get jobs, Nick goes to school (at Alan's insistence), Alan has crushes on girls (and girls have crushes on Nick).

Of course, Nick starts right off rescuing his favorite sword from under the sink (and don't think he won't use it), Alan could shoot you before you realized that sweet, smiling guy even knew what a gun was, they've got to watch out for mad Mum in the attic, and they're forced to pack up and move every time a magician or demon bursts into their house. Which is once every couple of months. At best.

Enter Jamie and Mae, a brother-sister duo who witness the latest demonic intrusion and need Nick and Alan's help: Jamie's been marked by a demon, a mark that lets a demon trace, hurt, and eventually possess him, leaving nothing of him behind. Alan wants to help them; Nick wants them out of his house. Naturally, brotherly arguments ensue.

Between running from, beating up, capturing, killing, and attempting to outmaneuver scheming magicians, of course.

The Demon's Lexicon is written by debut author Sarah Rees Brennan. It's the first in a trilogy. The second, The Demon's Covenant, was released in May 2010, and the third, The Demon's Surrender, was released in June 2011.

Tropes used in The Demon's Lexicon include:


 Jamie: You said not to have another drink. And do you know what I think? I think you were right.

    • and:

 Jamie: You are my friend.

Nick: Yeah, I am.

Jamie: But these stairs. They are not my friends.

  • The Chessmaster: Hello, Alan.
  • Consummate Liar - Alan, to the point where speaking the truth - even simple truths with no potential whatsoever for harm - is uncomfortable and pained.
  • Cool Big Sis: Mae, who's protective of and close to Jamie.
    • Sin is very aware of this. When she goes to pick Lydie up from school, she notes that it can't hurt to have her sister's classmates know that she has a cool big sis.
  • Dangerous Sixteenth Birthday - Sixteen is when you become fair game for demon possession.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Pretty much everyone, but most notably Mae, Jamie and Nick.
  • Deal with the Devil - Magicians by definition, but Black Arthur takes this to an art form, sacrificing his wife and then-unborn son for a tremendous amount of power. Pity it didn't work.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen - King, in Nick's case. Slowly and with great difficulty.
    • Liannan is an interestingly literal (if brief) example.
  • Demonic Possession - Right there in the premise: it's what gets demons to help out magicians - nice human bodies to hang around in (for as long as they last).
  • Does This Remind You of Anything? - When Jamie starts to tell Annabel that he is a magician she nervously says that they had the same conversation when he was thirteen and reminded him that she was fine with his sexuality.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome - Olivia
  • Freudian Excuse - Gerald and Seb, possibly many more magicians as well.
  • Five-Man Band - While Mae, Alan and Jamie's roles are very obvious, Nick and Sin both have elements of The Lancer AND The Big Guy. Before Sin joins the group, Nick fills both roles.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom - Jamie in the third book. Later, Gerald as well.
  • Has Two Mommies - Matthias the piper. Mentioned very briefly when he arrives with them to tour the Goblin Market at the end of The Demon's Surrender.
  • Hates Being Touched - Nick. Attempts at familiarity (unless you're Alan) will probably end with a knife in the offending body part.
  • Ho Yay: Nick and Jamie - Mae even suspects Jamie has a crush on him.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills - Alan doesn't miss.
  • Incest Yay: In a deleted scene revealed during the TDS launch chat, Anzu kisses Nick while in his brother Alan's body. It's noteworthy that demons don't care for taboos like incest and probably can't differentiate between sexual and platonic feelings.
  • It Got Worse - Especially from Nick's point of view. Perfect stranger brings home a third-tier mark that says he's going to die? No big. Alan gets a first-tier mark? Now It's Personal.
  • Jerkass - Nick looks like one for most of the book, possibly overlapping with Jerk with a Heart of Gold, albeit a laser-guided heart of gold.
  • Kiss of Death - Olivia snuggles up to Black Arthur for a kiss, then sets herself on fire while still holding on to him. Subverted that this doesn't kill him straight off - his son does that a few minutes later.
  • Knife Nut - Nick. Another character points out that he carries the equivalent of a restaurant's cutlery drawer on him at all times. Sin embodies this trope, as well.
  • Les Yay: Mae and Sin, oh so much. From Mae's obvious girl-crush to Sin's more subtle flirting. Can't forget Liannan twirling about there:

 Mae: What else do you want? Besides the obvious.

Liannan: I want a kiss.

Mae: A - a kiss?

Sin: A kiss? I have a certain amount of expertise on the subject.

Mae: No. You can have your kiss. I'll do it.

Liannan: I'll keep you both in mind for later. But I don't believe I mentioned who I wanted the kiss from.

  • Loners Are Freaks - Nick does try to fit in with the kids at school...sort of. It doesn't really take.
  • Long-Lost Relative: Inverted. Alan and Nick actually aren't brothers.
  • Magic Is Evil: At least if you ask the people of the Market.
  • Manipulative Bastard: And Alan again....
  • Meaningful Echo: "Two worlds."
  • Murder Is the Best Solution - Nick certainly thinks so. With certain magicians, he's generally right.
  • Offing the Offspring - Olivia tried to drown Nick as a baby. Cue Alan's Promotion to Parent.
    • Add in Black Arthur's attacks and Daniel Ryves, in baby Nick's bedroom, with an enchanted knife...this positively abounds.
  • Parental Abandonment - Nick and Alan's parents aren't exactly around. Their dad's dead and their mum's mad, to start with. Well, Alan's dad and Nick's mum, respectively. Alan's mum is also dead and Nick's dad is the Big Bad.
    • On a much more normal level, Mae and Jamie's parents didn't pay them much attention even when they were still together. Their dad dislikes Jamie for being gay and avoids Mae for being odd. Their mum, whom they live with, although she loves them, doesn't have much time for them.
  • Perky Goth - Mae has pink hair, wears corsets and bat jewelery, and almost always has a smile on her face.
  • Promotion to Parent - Alan raised Nick more or less on his own ever since their mother tried to drown Nick as a baby. Mae's got a lesser degree of this going for Jamie. Sin to her younger siblings.
  • Ravens and Crows - Crop up in the kitchen fairly early on, as demon-controlled attackers.
  • Rotating Protagonist - Although all the books are told in third-person, the first is from Nick's POV, the second from Mae's and the third is from Sin's.
  • Running Gag - The number of times Nick shows up without his shirt is remarked on by several characters in the third book

 Mae: Is this no-shirts festival day?

Alan: Every day with Nick is no-shirts festival day.