Thursday, 1 September 2011

Book Review & UK Book Trailer: Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts.

Product details:
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books.
Paperback, 360 pages.
Release date: September 2nd 2011.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Ages: 14+
Source: Received from publisher for review.

Since mankind began, civilizations have always fallen: the Romans, the Greeks, the Aztecs…Now it's our turn. Huge earthquakes rock the world. Cities are destroyed. But something even more awful is happening. An ancient evil has been unleashed, turning everday people into hunters, killers, crazies.

Mason's mother is dying after a terrible car accident. As he endures a last vigil at her hospital bed, his school is bombed and razed to the ground, and everyone he knows is killed. Aries survives an earthquake aftershock on a bus, and thinks the worst is over when a mysterious stranger pulls her out of the wreckage, but she's about to discover a world changed forever. Clementine, the only survivor of an emergency town hall meeting that descends into murderous chaos, is on the run from savage strangers who used to be her friends and neighbors. And Michael witnesses a brutal road rage incident that is made much worse by the arrival of the police--who gun down the guilty party and then turn on the bystanding crowd.

Where do you go for justice when even the lawmakers have turned bad? These four teens are on the same road in a world gone mad. Struggling to survive, clinging on to love and meaning wherever it can be found, this is a journey into the heart of darkness – but also a journey to find each other and a place of safety.

A totally thrilling page-turner, Dark Inside is an intense, exciting slice of apocalyptic awesomeness from debut author Jeyn Roberts. Undoubtedly one of the best books I’ve read this year, Dark Inside is a white-knuckle roller-coaster of a ride that kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. A survival story with chaos, anarchy murder and mayhem at its core, Dark Inside is not for the faint of heart, but since horror is my first love, I couldn’t get enough of this book!

Dark Inside opens as a series of earthquakes occur across the world, rocking the earth to its core and unleashing an ancient evil inside the minds of humans everywhere. Those who can resist the dark inside must now fight to survive in a world gone mad where danger lurks around every corner in the form of the ‘Baggers’ who exist only to hunt the survivors down and tear them from limb to limb. We see this scary new world through the eyes of four teens, Mason, Aries, Clementine and Michael all of who witness terrible atrocities, such as Clementine who sees a town hall meeting turn into a bloody massacre and Michael who witnesses and act of extreme road rage and is lucky to escape with his life. Mason escapes the bombing of his school only because he is visiting his dying mother in hospital, while Aries, caught in the earthquake, is helped to safety by a mysterious stranger only to find that the world has changed forever, and now she will never be safe again. Throughout time civilizations have fallen and now it’s our turn as mankind turns evil and begins to destroy the world as we know it.

What makes this book so entirely gripping and so, so scary is that it is very believable. The enemy in this book is all of us – family members, teachers, law enforcement, boyfriends and girlfriends - because we all have a dark inside, and nobody can be trusted. Think of the world we’re living in now. It’s not a very nice place. Not a day goes by when countless atrocities occur the world over, and I only have to think back a few weeks to the London Riots to cite an example of when people lost all sense of reason and started causing absolute mayhem on the streets. Throughout time, mankind has been his own worst enemy, and that is the scary notion explored throughout this book. It’s clever, compelling and will leave you with lots of food for thought.

While Dark Inside contains plenty of carnage within its pages, this book also stands apart in its sublime writing and fantastic characters. The narrative structure of this one might take a little getting used to as it’s told in alternating chapters from the point of view of the four teens mentioned above along with chapters from the mysterious ‘Nothing’, but once you get to grips with the different narrative voices and their stories, this is a truly addictive read. The characters in this book are not perfect, they are flawed and sometimes they have to do nasty things to survive in this crazy new world they find themselves in, but you will root for them, and you will admire their will to survive. Dark Inside also contains a great cast of supporting characters including the adorable Chickadee who provides some wonderfully touching and tender moments in an otherwise bleak existence and a hot guy with a lot of secrets who I am harbouring a crush on even though I know it is so very, very wrong of me. I think I might be taking my love of bad boys just a step too far here. We’ll see…!

For me Dark Inside had it all, and it is still playing on my mind even now. I have lots of questions and theories on this one. With great movie potential and huge crossover appeal I was blown away by this dark, edgy tale of anarchy and mayhem. Its real End of Days edge-of-your-seat stuff and I couldn’t get enough of it. Jeyn Roberts is a writer to watch and I can’t wait to find out more about this ancient evil and the new world it has created when the sequel (working title Sanctuary) releases. This one comes highly recommended from me. Go read it!

Watch the book trailer for Dark Inside....if you dare!


  1. Im glad you liked this too! :) This is one of my favorites for this year. It's definitely a strong dystopian. I'm curious if there's a sequel.. I *hope* there is. And yes! I dared! I watched the trailer. It's so creepy!!

  2. Holy apocalyptic mayhem! This sounds amazingly dark and intense. Love it. I live to read "white-knuckle rollercoaster rides" and am more than curious to find out how these four teens survive. Fab review going off the order this one now.

  3. @Precious - There is a sequel. I mentioned it at the end of my review. This is the first in a proposed three book series. :)

    @Jan - Hope you love it too!

  4. Squee! Can't wait to read this one. Must push it up the pile and quick!

  5. This one doesn't come out until October in Canada, but I agree with you it is a fantastic read. If you get the chance try 'Ashes' by Ilsa J Bick. It comes out Sept 6th here and it is almost as good as Dark Inside, but not quite :) my review was posted earlier this week on The Paperback Princesses. I love getting your daily blog posts.

  6. This book sounds so amazing! Your review just stuck it right at the top of my TBR! I love getting scared ;D
    Great review!

  7. I'm so glad you loved this book! I've heard only bad reviews for it so far but I think it sounds great I can't wait to read it hopefully I'll love it too :)

  8. I got this book and super duper excited to read it! Loved the review!

  9. @ Jess - I've seen negative reviews for this too, which I think is a shame but each to their own. I think you need to be a fan of horror to really appreciate this one. I've seen it described as dystopian fic, but I wouldn't class it as such. For me it was apocalyptic horror all the way - very dark and brutal, truly scary and not for the faint of heart. Also, I loved the four POV's and the mysterious fifth, but I'm guessing it's not something that everyone will warm to as a lot of readers don't seem to like more than two POV's at a time.

    @Savy - hope you enjoy! :)

  10. @Curlypow - Thanks for the comment! :) I actually passed on Ashes for review recently as it is zombie fic and I don't do zombies. What I loved about Dark Inside is that the crazies are still human. The rotting flesh of zombies gives me nightmares, but I'm perfectly fine with all the carnage in D.I. haha! What can I say - I have kinda peculiar reading tastes.

    I have heard a lot of good things about Ashes, though! :)

  11. Oh I know EXACTLY what you mean about taking the love of bad boys too far. The person you're talking about? I kinda like him too. Even though I know I really, really shouldn't :P. Great review, I just finished this one and loved it! Glad you enjoyed it too - can't wait for the sequel :).

  12. One of your favorite books of the year? WOW! I am definitely going to have the check this one out since we have similar tastes. I looked it up and I think it comes out in November over I will have to keep my eye out for it. Great review!

  13. I'm reading this at the moment and really liking it, but I HATE the writing style. It's just not working for me at all, it's so stunted and weird. Hopefully I'll get used to it.

    The Cait Files

  14. @Liz Lol! Yeah, we've talked already! I couldn't help myself with him. I know it's oh, so wrong!

    @Christina - I love Horror and end of days stuff. Haven't reviewed many books like this on the blog up to now, but this was so my thing!

    @Cait - Oh no. Sorry the writing style isn't for you. I loved it. I loved everything about this one!

  15. You might be surprised with Ashes, the badies aren't actually zombies, more like cannibals :P Whatever they are, they are still alive!

  16. Oooh, now I'm even more excited to read this one! I love when books incorporate scary ideas that could actually happen. *shudder* Thanks for the review! :)

  17. Awesome review Leanna. I can't wait to read this :)

  18. @Curleypow - Hmmmmmm...maybe I shouldn't have passed over that one. I might just pick up a copy instead when it releases. :)

  19. This sounds sooo good! I'll definitely have to pick a copy up.

  20. I don't think this book is for me, but 5 out of 5, wow. You really must have loved it. ;)

  21. After hearing your thoughts about this book on Twitter and now your review, Im pretty sure I have to get this book!

  22. Wow, ok, I'm sold. You write very convincing reviews and you always include all of the things I want to know about the book. Thank you!


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