Bewitching Romance "The Devil Knows" is a Steamy Cauldron of Saints and Sinners

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““Holt-Johnstone brings mid-19th Century Canadian life in the bush alive in this description narrative that is as insightful as it is brilliant.â€� – Eileen S., Amazon Reviewer

February 06, 2018

From the strictly ordered society of Victorian England to the wilds of Canada, to the surreal world of Jamaica just emerging from slavery, “The Devil Knows,” unfolds against an explosive backdrop of war, rebellion, politics and the struggle for freedom.

“It’s not your mother’s romance novel,� said Robert Fletcher, CEO of Strategic Book Publishing and Rights Agency. “Historically accurate, this story takes an entertaining look at a world long gone. We are thrilled to announce its release.�

In September, 1837, an impressionable Susan arrives with her father, the Reverend Thomas Anderson, at a remote Ontario lumber camp, part of his pastoral circuit. Confronted with a heady mix of intrigue, thievery, murder and romance, Susan is captivated by camp superintendent John McIver, an idealistic Scot. Traditional lumbermen’s rules, “no guns, no whisky, no Indians, no women,� go by the wayside as Susan’s ill-fated father falls victim to the hazards of backwoods life.

The wisdom and intriguing folklore of the First Nation’s people mark the upheavals that transform the era.
Then the Devil takes ship to the tropics for a heady taste of island life. “The Devil Knows” is a lively and mischievous voyage to the past. Join the adventure and watch the video at:

Read what people are saying about “The Devil Knows” in these 5-star Amazon reviews:

“Holt-Johnstone brings mid-19th Century Canadian life in the bush alive in this description narrative that is as insightful as it is brilliant.� – Eileen S.

“’The Devil Knows’ delves deep into colonialism, the western, mercenary impulse, and the rugged foundations of civilization, intertwining the wilderness— as a character itself— and a diverse cast— which eschew the genre’s common stereotype— into a quick paced narrative as thrilling as any adventure tale and as nuanced as anything by the Transcendentalists.� – Charles Asher

“This is the kind of book I love to read when my nose is in the book and I forget to eat and sleep. Each chapter ending compelled me to continue learning about the main characters in the story, the people, the history, the customs (English, Irish, French and First Nations people), the politics and the religious attitudes of the day.� – Amazon Customer

“A well written and researched novel on the realities and hardships of life in northern Canada in the 1800's. The story was captivating and intriguing with lots of great characters and history including a love story.� – Mare

“Couldn't put this book down! Can't wait for the next one to appear. Janet Holt-Johnstone is a great find.â€� – Bogellie

About the Author: Born in London, England, Janet Holt-Johnstone, was a journalist, marketer, and occasional fiction writer in the West Indies, the United States, Scotland, Australia, and Canada. “The Devil Knows” is her first published novel. A second tale, now underway and set in 1537, tells the story of Janet Douglas, an ancestor, who was “burned at the stake as a witch, although she was innocent.â€�

Author’s Note: Once upon a time, at the site of a derelict lumber camp near Chartier Lake on the Pickerel River System in Canada’s near north, the Devil provoked Doug and Ivor Johnstone to mastermind this story. The Devil alone is responsible for its content.

THE DEVIL KNOWS (ISBN: 978-1-63135-966-8) is now available for $19.50 and can be ordered through the publisher’s website: or at or

WHOLESALERS: This book is distributed by Ingram Books and other wholesale distributors. Contact your representative with the ISBN for purchase. Wholesale purchase for retailers, universities, libraries, and other organizations is also available through the publisher; please email bookorder(at)sbpra(dot)net.

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