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Review: Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts

Saturday, July 30, 2011
5 Stars: An Incredible Read
Series: Dark Inside #1
Hardcover: 329 Pages
Publication: November 1, 2011 by Simon and Schuster

Four teenagers on the same road in a world gone mad. Struggling to survive, clinging on to love and meaning wherever it can be found.

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.

I was afraid to go to sleep Thursday night after finishing Dark Inside (it was also the day that I read most of it). The scary part isn't the apocalypse or gruesome deaths, however. It's the Baggers. It's the 'disease' of sorts floating around, turning humans turning on their own kind. That this is such a plausible demise for civilization.

Humans have been progressing rapidly for the past century, so quickly that it's become evident that our worst enemy is ourselves. Our enemy in the apocalyptic world of Dark Inside is the Darkness Inside humans. It's been inside of us: festering, infecting, waiting for the time to strike. When 9.5+ magnitude earthquakes strike across the world simultaneously, the largest genocide known to mankind initiates. Strangers turn on strangers, friends turn on friends, and family turns on family. You don't know who to trust, who will turn next. The only clue is the black veins that lines the white of their eyes, and by the time you're close enough to see the signs, you're within their grasp.

Can you imaging living in that kind of world? It takes a huge amount of luck to escape their initial strike, and I don't have it. Even if I did, you need endurance and intuition to survive. Could I do that? I don't know. Mason, Michael, Clementine, and Aries are four teenagers who have had family and/or friends turn on them, and some will even betray in turn, seeking to protect themselves and survive... not knowing when--if-- they'll ever find safety.

The events start off slow, before the earthquake happens. You watch as the world falls apart, unable to do anything. There are books that you race through in order to finish it. Dark Inside isn't one of those books. It's the kind that you read with dread, the kind whose pages you want to turn and yet can't. The kind that you have to put down and run away from before returning, unable to stop reading until you learn the fates of the four teens. That was what Dark Inside was like for me.

Because the story is told from the perspective of four teens, it took me a while to get to know them, but it's okay. The story is already drawn out at the start as the story leads up to the apocalypse, so there's time to acclimate to the four voices. It's when the apocalypse starts that the story really takes off, and even then the action only takes place between the teenager's frequent, suspense-filled attempts to stay off the Baggers' radar. (In other words, when they bump into the Baggers.)

Then there's the mysterious fifth narrator... Nothing. Nothing knows what's happening, but Nothing won't tell you. All you learn is the turmoil that Nothing suffers... Nothing's desire for this sickening game to end. Nothing will keep you questioning what is happening to the world. If all of humanity won't die out this time. And there's nothing you can do but read and read as the lives of the four teens draw closer and closer to each other until the events of this book comes to a head. If there's one word that describes how I felt reading this book, it's powerless. Powerless to prevent the apocalypse, to stop the darkness from spreading, or to save the teens.

Best (or worst because I have to wait another year for it) of all? The events don't close with Dark Inside. It's only the beginning....

Come back on Monday to read my author interview with Jeyn Roberts and the chance to win a signed ARC of Dark Inside.

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An ARC was provided by the author for review purposes.
41 comments on "Review: Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts"
  1. Words cannot describe how excited I am to read DARK INSIDE! I've been following this story since InkPop, and have become friends with Jeyn in the process. I'm anxiously awaiting this release, and I'm SO JEALOUS you got an ARC! Eek!

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  2. Ooh, Dark Inside sounds creepy! And a mysterious 5th narrator? Sounds even creepier! I can't wait to read this book! I love dystopian books so it would be awesome to add Dark Inside to my collection :)

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  3. I am really looking forward to this book, can't wait to read it :D

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  4. I am SO looking forward to reading this! And now I'm extra intrigued to see if I can handle the epic disturbingness without taking sanity breaks... XD

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  5. Wow! I haven't read a great scary book in a while! Sounds like this might be it!

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  6. First review I've read on Dark Inside and I'm sure not the last. Sounds so awesome. Off to add to my wishlist.


    (\___/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")

    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com
    http://lisaslovesbooksofcourse.blogspot.com/

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  7. Looking forward to this book! :D

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  8. I can't wait to read this. I loveeeee dystopian novels! This is one of the books I'm looking forward to most this year! :o)

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  9. Oh and by the way, "ladyreadsalot" is Emily Kaiser... I forgot to enter that name in my extra entry for the Summer Giveaway contest! :)

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  10. i'm looking forward to reading this book!i'm so intrigued by the storyline..sounds like a good read!

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  11. I love books that keep you up at night. If they are plausible it's the cherry on top! So glad you reviewed this book. Sounds like my kind of read.
    Sasse (_yay_)

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  12. oooh, this book sounds coolio! I also like how the book seems to have a different view and setting...simply wonderful!

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  13. Wow! This book sounds amazing - dystopian at its finest! I cannot wait to read it!! Thanks for an amazing review :)
    jwitt33 at live dot com

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  14. Good lord, I am so looking forward to this it's not even funny! Great review. Now I just want to read it even more!

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  15. Oooo...this sounds really, really good. I love post-apocalyptic books, and it's fascinating to me, the psychological turn-around that can happen in chaos. Decent people turning into...not so decent ones, or on the flip side the unlikely heroes that come out of such events. Thanks for the great review....can't wait to read it! :)

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  16. Looks like a great book, I'm looking forward to it!

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  17. Eels! This books sounds so good! The cover, the summary... Can't wait.

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  18. DARK INSIDE looks amazing. I SO want to know more about The Baggers.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  19. the cover is beautiful and this book sounds wonderful. i can't wait to read it.

    trvlagnt1t@yahoo.com

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  20. I think this will be a good read.I find myself liking dystopian lately.

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  21. this sounds good. I love reading mystery novels but nothing really that scary lately. I'll try this one. Thanks for the review.

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  22. Sounds creepy and I can't wait to read it!
    ~mamabunny13

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  23. I am loving all these dark theme dystopians out right now! Would love to read this one!

    Great review!

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  24. Sounds like an amazing book I can't wait!!

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  25. I look forward to read this book. it sounds very interesting.

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  26. 28 Days Later is one of my favourites. Just by reading the summary I feel like this might be an awesome book and your review made me really excited to read it. :)

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  27. Great review! You had me at 'it's like 28 Days' Now I definitely will be adding this one to my must read list.

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  28. This book looks amazing, I cannot wait to read it.

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  29. This books sounds and looks soooo GOOD!! I cant wait to read it!!

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  30. I can't wait to read this story. It's like dystopia, only cooler, b/c we're actually seeing the apocalypse happen. The more I hear about it the more I need to read it. Fall had better come quickly...

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  31. This sounds like a twist on reality that I'd love to read!

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  32. I am really looking forward to this book, can't wait to read it =]

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  33. This looks like an awesome book

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  34. This book sounds so totally cool. I love books that deal with the apocalypse. Adding to my to-read list!

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  35. Nice review! This looks like a more unique post-apocalyptic book, at least with Nothing and the "ancient evil that has been unleashed." I like that the blurb compares our world to previous civilizations - with the cycle of history, everything is bound to fall eventually.

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  36. This is the second review I've read for Dark Inside and while the first review whetted my appetite, this one has me salivating for a copy of the book. A very insightful and informative review.

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  37. Wow. This book sounds great!! Thanks for the awesome review!

    Mickey @ imabookshark

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  38. this sounds right up my ally i havent heard of this book before now and now that i have i sooo want it for sure awesome review!

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  39. wow. sounds very intense! thanks for a great review!

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  40. I can't wait for this book and for the sequel, the first of many, I hope.

    I also want to thank Kris for this great review, the quality of your writing is amazing and made me what to learn more. Made me trust in what you were saying due to the talent of the person reviewing it.

    Laura xx

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  41. I am so excited to read this book, and this review just amped up my excitement. They're's a lot of dystopian books out, and I think reading a book about the actual apocalypse will be interesting :)

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