Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: November 1st, 2011
Genre: Young Adult, Post-Apocalyptic
*I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest 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.
When it comes to the story inside this book, I want to tell you that it’s a good one. Really good. I loved it and could not put it down. I pretty much read it non-stop because there was always something happening and the pacing never slowed down. I found myself gritting my teeth, cringing, and sometimes even looking away like I would have done if I was watching a particularly gory horror movie. There was a ton of action and oh my god was it suspenseful.
The issues I had with Dark Inside were not with the story itself. My issues were with the multiple viewpoints and the character development. Or should I say, lack of character development. This book was written from 5 different viewpoints. And that’s a lot. Now in order for that to work, you have to be able to clearly tell that it’s five different people speaking. They have to have different voices and distinctive personalities. That is not an easy thing to do by any means, and if you can’t do it, don’t TRY IT. Just, DON’T. There are award-winning writers that wouldn’t be able to pull this off. And as great as your story was, Jeyn Roberts, you did not capture the voices of 5 different characters! If the chapters had not been entitled with the character’s names, I would not have known who was speaking. They all sounded the same. Not. Good.
I guess my point is, writers should know their strengths and weaknesses. If you think you are going to have trouble with a particular aspect of writing, then do something else. For instance, I am a great cook, but you won’t see me cooking a homemade Hollandaise sauce or Beef Wellington anytime soon. Because it’s difficult. And it takes practice. And extreme skill.
Anyway, like I said, the story was great. But the execution needed work. Lots of it. In a year where dystopian novels are on shelves everywhere you turn, yours needs to stand out if you want it to be a winner. And unfortunately, there are reasons why this one didn’t. Will I read the sequel if there is one? Yeah, probably, because I want to know what happens.
And that’s another thing. The ending was wholly unsatisfying and there were practically no answers to any of the questions that were raised throughout the book. Which I normally wouldn’t care too much about, but I was already ticked off and that just added to the problem.
To order a copy of Dark Inside from Amazon.com, click here: Dark Inside.