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Dark Inside #1

Dark Inside

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Moments after several huge earthquakes shake every continent on Earth, something strange starts happening to some people. An inner rage has been released and some people cannot fight it. For those who can, life becomes an ongoing battle to survive - at any cost!

368 pages, Hardcover

First published November 1, 2011

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About the author

Jeyn Roberts

10 books715 followers
Jeyn Roberts (pronounced Jen - the Y is silent)grew up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, and started writing at an early age, having her first story published when she was 16 in a middle-grade anthology called LET ME TELL YOU.

When she was 21, she moved to Vancouver with dreams of being a rock star, graduating from the University of British Columbia with a degree in Writing and Psychology. For the next few years she played in an alternative/punk band called Missing Mile before moving to England where she received her MA from the prestigious Creative Writing graduate course at Bath Spa University. Jeyn is a former singer, songwriter, actress, bicycle courier and tree planter.

An avid traveler, she’s been around the world, most recently, teaching high school in South Korea.

A lover of animals, Jeyn volunteers regularly with helping abandoned and abused animals, especially cats.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,118 reviews
Profile Image for karen.
3,979 reviews170k followers
July 11, 2018
yesterday i was in a discussion with some dude about teen fiction, and why it is so damn compelling and why we were lately reading it to the exclusion of all other literature,despite our grown status, and his reason was because of the instant gratification of it - that the pacing is such that it can generally be read in one sitting and you want to keep reading it. and it doesn't mean that it is mindless, like a lot of adult page-turner fiction, but that it is frequently too exciting to stop reading. and i actually tend to be less indulgent with YA authors than adult authors, because if i feel they are trying to pull a fast one or get sloppy/lazy because of the age of their audience, i get pissed, so i am not just reading it without my critical faculties.

i like to think of myself as a discriminating YA reader with a narrow focus. take your love stories and shove 'em. i don't care about your divorced parents or your worries over college or your love for some long-dead sparkle of a boy.

i wanna see you survive.
go on, survive for me.

i am so glad we are still in the end times/dystopian phase of YA lit. there is so much to read, i can barely keep up! and then tommy goes and gives me ARCs and i swoon with pleasure.

however. i will say that the pacing in this one really made me mad. i brought it to my jury duty, unread, thinking, i will probably be able to finish this before my servitude is over. and then i went and finished it with three hours left to go! fortunately, i brought a back-up book, but you try reading small-printed dense biography/history when the family feud is on in the background, a show which makes you stupider just by being in the same room as a television showing it. survey says: kill yourself.

i had not noticed the television at all when reading dark inside. i even read through that promotional video they make you watch about the role and responsibility of the jury
bad juror.

this is like a YA version of david moody's hater and dog blood series. after a mighty earthquake, something is released that causes ordinary people to just start killin'. some people remain unaffected, and they are the hunted.

can you tell who is a killer and who is not??

um... sometimes.
best be careful.

there are so many great scenes in here, none of which i can talk about because they are better left to be discovered by a reader. there is one supremely ballsy scene in which a character does something selfish but understandable and many people suffer because of it that i hope does not get softened by anything in the sequel. if this were australian YA fiction, i would not even question it. american YA... it would be likely that somehow things would still turn out okay.

canadian YA?? well, let's wait and see.

i feel like this should have been much much longer; there's like a big game-changing situation that happens 3/4 of the way through, and this "turn" happened so late in the book that it seems cruel to make readers wait for another book right when things started changing!

come on!

i resent you, ARC, because first i have to wait for this book to come out for you regular folk (heh heh) and then i have to wait for a whole 'nother book before i can be satisfied.

so for all my throes of excitement over the pacing of YA, it frequently just ruins my life. thankfully, there is a ton of the stuff out there. this one is just better than most.

come to my blog!
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,962 reviews293k followers
March 30, 2012

For me, what rescued Dark Inside from getting an extremely negative review was the fast-paced action and adventure, weird creepiness and what Tatiana likes to call "compulsive readability". The book had many faults, which I will go into, and it was on the whole not a great work of dystopian fiction.

Basically, there's this earthquake one day and suddenly people everywhere start acting weird... becoming possessed by a violent rage, turning on their families and friends, searching the streets for new victims to torture and kill... and amongst all this are a few individuals (inc. Mason, Aries, Michael and Clementine) who remain unaffected by this, er, infection or whatever it is. At the beginning, our four protagonists have never met one another, but as fate will have it they eventually come together and their stories begin to entwine.

Every so often the book would stop in it's fast-paced tracks and another mysterious perspective would be heard that is simply called 'Nothing' and reminded me a great deal of the voice of the darkness in the Gone series by Michael Grant. It is, much to my annoyance, still unclear at the book's close what this 'Nothing' is.

You know, it's all okay. But it has that sense of "oh my god, quick, run from the monsters!" and then they get away and they're all nice and safe and they walk around a corner and "oh my god, more monsters, RUN!!!" And again, as in Divergent, the dystopia is mediocre. I used the following description to try and sum up what I expect a good dystopian novel to be:

Basically, it's where the author imagines a hypothetical world that's usually set in the future and takes a relevent political or social issue or issues and creates a fictional society that could possibly be what might happen if humanity was to follow a certain idea or movement or perhaps even carry on behaving the way they are. For example, failing to improve the world's environmental problems.

So far, that's not what's happening. I will be reading the sequel that I'm sure is coming so perhaps I will be wowed there and realise I was wrong to doubt Jeyn Roberts ability to create a successful dystopia. So far it all doesn't make sense as to why these people's minds have been hijacked... they're not zombies, if the author had gone down that route she could have used the whole 'cure for cancer gone wrong' thing that's popular today. But an earthquake that makes people get super angry? I'm not seeing the political/social relevance. So here's the five main things that turned me off in this book:

1) 4 POVs
This does not work. I have never known it to work and I have never enjoyed a book with more than two (main) perspectives. In fact, to be honest, I'm not a big fan of multiple perspectives at all. Furthermore, these characters did not have distinct enough voices to allow four different POVs to work, I could only tell them apart by the stuff that happened to them, like "so this is the one who's mum died" and "this is the one who's trying to find her brother", but personality-wise I was clueless.

2) Throwaway Characters
In a way that is exactly opposite to authors like Melina Marchetta, the author brings many characters into the story who are all unimportant and quickly disregarded. What's the point? There was a bit where Michael teamed up with a group of people he'd met and he spoke effectionately of two of these characters who he referred to as 'the mother' and 'the child'. There's a scene that should have been dramatic and emotional except it wasn't because I couldn't relate to Michael's feelings towards people who I knew only as 'the mother' and 'the child'. There were so many one-dimensional characters in this book.

3) Quickly Pulled Together End
I thought the ending seemed rushed and lacked smoothness for it. All the four protagonists spent the novel doing their own individual things and telling their own stories and then, like lightning, they all just happen to, well, run into one another. It felt to me like the author had not given much thought to their meeting and wanted simply to get it over with, it was weird the way it happened so fast and read a little ridiculously. As with the turning a corner and "oh my god monsters!" thing I mentioned above, it was like: Aries would be running and she'd knock into a guy who says "hi, I'm Mason...blah-de-blah" and then they'd both turn a corner and there'd be another boy and girl who'd say "oh, we're Michael and Clementine" - see what I mean?

4) We've Still No Idea What's Going On
I appreciate that this is probably the start of at least a trilogy, if not an even longer series, and that it would be a stupid idea to tell the readers everything in the first book. But I felt that there was so little given away in this novel that I came away at the end with nothing. We travel through the books with these characters, we witness earthquakes, murders, heartache... and in the end we remain entirely clueless as to what it's all about. You could have given us something!

5) Casual Misogyny
I had to mention this because I thought that it was the most in-my-face annoying fact about the novel. I was sick of hearing the female protagonists apologise by saying "sorry, I'm such a girl". All the time. One of them gets a bit teary and they're apologising for being a girl. And this novel was written by a woman! Come on ladies, KICK ASS! And if you want to cry, don't effin' apologise for it!

Anyway, it could have been a lot better, that's for sure. But there is still potential here and I will wait and see what the sequel brings.

Many thanks to Macmillan Children's Books for kindly providing a copy of this for review.
Profile Image for Kat (Lost in Neverland).
445 reviews702 followers
October 9, 2014
4.5 Stars.

Update: Fuck it, FIVE STARS!



An earthquake has destroyed most of the world.
Humans have been consumed by hatred and anger and have become the monsters that they truly are.
Surviving has never been this difficult.

We follow the perspectives of four kids.

Mason, whose mother has just died and he's fighting the madness inside of him.
Aries, who was caught in the earthquake that killed her best friend but was saved by a mysterious stranger.
Michael, narrowly avoiding death by betraying his group.
And Clementine, who was forced to abandon her family to escape being killed herself and is now going to Seattle to find her brother.

Four kids who will defy death, form new bonds, lose friends, and try to keep their own minds from becoming black.

Extremely fast paced, vividly exciting, and bloody creepy too.

First of all, thank you SO MUCH, Skyla, for recommending this to me. You rock.

Second, FINALLY a good horror story for October!

I am officially blown away. Whoops, there I go, blowing away in the awesomeness of this book.

Ahhh, I can't even find words to describe it.

Can I just keep skipping lines and gushing about it?

*sigh* Fine, I'll make this review real.

I loved how this book dealt with 'madness' and the 'darkness inside' people. You guys all know how much I'm fascinated with the art of insanity.


Come on, you know you love me.


There was only one thing I did not like about this book. The phrase 'Game over' was used way too much. I think it was said about five times throughout the whole book, maybe more, and it drove me crazy. 'Game over' should stay in video games, I swear to god.

Another thing I LOVED about this book was;

Daniel x Aries


Ship, ship, shippity, ship, ship.

Oh Daniel. He wasn't even in the story that much but oh I loved him so. Forget about Aries, Daniel, marry meeee!

I strongly believe Daniel was 'Nothing' but I don't care. I like mah boys a little insane too.


If you cannot already tell, I loved this book. If you don't read it you'll regret it.

Excuse me while I go fangirl and NJRNGKJARNBGKRNBGLAKRG.

Profile Image for Michelle, the Bookshelf Stalker.
596 reviews371 followers
November 21, 2011
I was soooo disappointed in this book. I love good, graphic novels where the blood is bloody, the bones are crunching, and the terror is terrifying! The book started off with a natural disaster (earthquake), some weird spooky supernatural stuff, and 4 protagonists that starred in our show, I mean book. The 4 characters see some seriously creepy stuff and basically, they don’t know whom to trust, were to go and what the hell is going on. Great setup right? Yup. It was soooooooo good. And then….. well

Wash, rinse and repeat.

That’s it. It was one graphic scene after another, with no plot. It was just our 4 characters going through the motions of surviving without us, the reader, understanding (let alone the characters) of what the hell was going on, or why any of this was happening. The book was just a poorly made horror movie where the reel gets stuck and you play the killing/dying scenes over and over again.

Why did we need 4 POV?

We didn’t. It seemed like such a cop-out. The reader never feels emotionally attached to any character because of the 4 POV’s.

You thought Divergent was screwy?

Sometimes I become a bit picky about the world the book is set in. If I don’t understand something, my entire review can be hyper focused on my confusion & I’ve been known to write an entire review full of questions. (See Divergent). I’m not going to do that here since, well, it’s been a while since I read the book and frankly, a lot of the specifics have left me. However, I have placed my thoughts regarding some of the quotes from the book below.

“He didn’t go home. Instead he drove around until his gas tank was nothing but fumes. Stopping to refill, he grabbed a bag of chips that he ate but didn’t taste. Glancing at the clock, he decided he’d spent enough time away as the doctor ordered. He headed back to the hospital because there was nothing else he could do.”

If you have no clue who “he” is, neither do I.

“The old man twisted around on his crutches and scanned the road. “

So, these bad evil dudes are beating the shit out of people left and right. Here comes an OLD man on CRUTCHES and offers to take you in (well not you but the kid in the story). Either the old man is a bad dude in disguise OR is one of the luckiest old men around. Because if my understanding of “old” is correct, usually you cannot run from bad evil dudes and if you are on crutches AND old, you are in serious trouble and should not be alive at this point of the story. However, that doesn’t prevent our character (at this point I cannot even remember who was the stupid jackass POV at this point of the story) from fully trusting old man in crutches even though he’s seen some pretty graphic evil dude bone crunching deaths. This totally reminded me of the bimbo blonds that trip and fall when running from the slasher serial killer in the movie! Totally predictable and dumb.

“The clouds were fat and gray, the land pregnant with swollen tears.”

All righty then!

“Glancing down onto the street below, he could see some people trashing a car with what might have been a baseball bat or a crowbar. A few blocks over to the right, a group of people had cornered someone. They were closing in on the kill. Even farther away, a group of people were stacking bodies into what looked like a gigantic bonfire.”

No, the kid doesn’t have super human eyesight. It’s fricken dark and he can see blocks and blocks and even farther down. Wow.

“She wasn’t overly familiar with the area, and it was even harder at night with the shadows mixing up her sense of direction.”

Ok so, um, exactly what is causing the shadows? Since, one of the big issues here is it is REALLY dark. Like, no electricity.

“The last thing in the world she needed was a broken ankle”.

No really, according to the author, “the last thing” many of the characters need is to come up with some other wording besides “the last thing”. Maybe I was hyper-focused on these words but I swear the author loved the combo of “the last thing”.


I’m still whining….. such great potential!!!

Profile Image for Giselle.
1,057 reviews907 followers
April 5, 2016
An unsolicited Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher for review. Quotes have been pulled from an ARC and may be subject to change.

The world has had enough. It wants to rid the earth of humans. One day an earthquake rips across the world and causes mass casualties. The enemy in this book is not vampires, werewolves, or ghosts. It is the people themselves. The Evil that creeps into each and every person’s mind causes normal human beings to rip and tear their own flesh and blood.

Each chapter is dedicated to four Canadian teenagers: Michael, Clementine, Aries and Mason. We follow along as each character is torn between being normal and being evil.

I practically devoured it in one sitting! There’s a lot of action, and a lot of moral questions I found myself asking: What if this happened to me right now? Would I be the leader that would help the other survivors? Would I be as strong as these characters fighting to the death to stay sane and to stay alive? I loved every bit of it and I quite enjoyed reading about Canadian cities for once.

Trust me, if you enjoy any Dystopian novel, you’ll love Dark Inside!
Profile Image for Aly (Fantasy4eva).
240 reviews120 followers
September 24, 2011
Well well, don't we have a bit of a stunner here. I started DARK INSIDE without any expectation, but I've been left completely surprised by just how wonderful this book is. And hey, it's hell of a fast read. Have I ever mentioned how much I love my fast paced reads? They totally rock my world, and DARK INSIDE is no exception.

After a series of earthquakes people completely turn on each other. There is no regret, no remorse. If the earthquakes haven't done you harm then these people will make sure they finish the job. All we know is that for some unexplained reason people have flat out started going on killing spree's. Sparing not even their own families or children.

Let me tell you now. Although I found it pretty bearable, this will not be a easy read for some. Many innocent people die, and it does get graphic at times. Basically it's far from pretty.

But it's more than worth it.

We are lead into the lives of four particular teenagers. Clementine, Aries, Mason and Michael. But there is a mysterious fifth under the name "nothing". Although it wasn't much of a mystery who this was. As we watch on, each will struggle with their own inner demons and guilt. Let's just say they haven't survived until now without having to kill a person or two. But this is the perfect example of survival of the fittest. You either hide in a corner and wait for a bagger to find you, or think quick and come up with a plan.

What the four will go through is horrific. Each will face their own journey and battle to stay alive whilst the so called *baggers* roam the streets. The freaky thing about the baggers is that they aren't necessarily all easy to tell apart. Although many of them are sloppy in their killings, some are more intelligent than others and can hold a conversation without you even suspecting. These are the ones that you really need to look out for. With rations scarce, the majority dead, hospitals, doctors and policemen practically nonexistent, there is no choice but to solely rely on yourself. No one is to be trusted, not even yourself.

There were so many moments where my heart would be beating furiously and I would be an anxious mess. When I think of a premise like this, this is exactly what I expect from a novel. Something gritty, a little gory to add a touch of realism. I got that from DARK INSIDE, and the fact that there were so many creepy/horrific moments really helped build the perfect atmosphere.

The story poses a strong question. Are we our own greatest enemy? Will the day come where we have so much power that we get carried away? I mean isn't that the reality of today? Isn't it us human who do most of the killing. May it be the environment, animals or each other. Will the time come when things go so out of hand that we destroy each other completely? DARK INSIDE makes you ask this very question, and as questionable some aspects of the book may be, you can't help but wonder - what if? As the story progresses and each character faces their own struggles, they are forced to question what or who is evil or good. Can you determine either and does it even matter anymore?

Although I grew frustrated by some the characters reckless decisions and mistakes, I found myself feeling guilty for judging them, because, for example: as much as Michael' cowardly tendencies cheesed me off, who's to say how I would have reacted if I was in their situation? Most likely, I would have not lasted as long as they have managed to. You see, each of them bring something important to the table, and it's enough at least to keep them alive, and that's what counts - no matter what their flaws. The ending is quite abrupt and leaves as many questions lingering as I had in the very beginning. Is there going to be a sequel? I would sure love one, but there is also something wonderful in leaving us readers with that big hovering question mark - in not knowing what happens to them in the world they are now living in.

For all you hopeless romantics, romance was pretty much non - existent. Oh there were feelings between certain characters, but it pretty much settled and stayed put around that line. So yeah, very tame and whatnot, and for some that may be a let down but it didn't bother me. It made sense actually and gave the book more of a realistic feel. I mean, where do you find time to make out/other things and such when creepy people are trying to kill you and the world is basically ending. So many books count on romance that it's refreshing to see that a book can hold it's own and the readers interest thoughout without it. Doncha think, eh.

Is is apparent that I loved this book?

Some who have read the book may not share my enthusiasm, but I, for one, thought it was pretty darn fantastic.
Profile Image for Eh?Eh!.
367 reviews4 followers
October 24, 2011
Even after 30 years in the US, my parents still have a very strong accent when they speak English. Eengrish. I'm able to interpret their pronunciations and grammar easily it since I grew up hearing it. But throw another accent at me - anything African, some European, or worst of all any kind of Asian accent other than Korean - and I can't tell you what the heck is being said without some knitted-brow concentration. And I notice I end up replying back in a louder voice, as if that'll help. I pfft myself.

With this book, I find that my childhood "accents" of fantasy&sci-fi and the later piles of textbook logic make it difficult to enjoy the story. The half-a** explanation of why the bad thing is happening...I don't understand you!!

Maybe that's part of why I'm finding Literature so difficult?? Brainpower is another reason, but maybe I'm not flexible enough to take in stories that don't have some magic(-al realism?) or enough of a futuristic tone or satisfying explanations?

Back to this book, there is a huge earthquake and then some people, marked by savagery, lack of remorse, and black veins in the eye-whites, start killing everyone else. The book follows 4 teens as they see the collapse of society and try to survive.

We never learn just what caused all this. How are the earthquakes and killers connected? Why did some change and others not? What's up with the black veins? The few places where the teens think about or discuss what's going on, there's 1) too much to be intriguingly mysterious and 2) not enough to be clear. Both those points made me appreciate Whedon's Firefly/Serenity Reavers even more. With the tv series, such mystery! Who were these psychotic killers who roamed the universe and made even Jayne scared! A friend of mine once explained why she found it pretty cool, the thought that humankind could go to the edge of the universe only to see nothing/everything in the blackness and go insane. With the movie, such a great explanation! It was the government! Sadly, that's kind of believable (see, Tuskegee). And then we're treated to a small group making a mess o' trouble with some clench-worthy action and I laughed and I cried and I laughed and I sobbed...anyway. Back to the book again, it gave an unsatisfying non-answer. Was it a malevolent force?? Was it something in the water?? What?! I don't understand!!

The books seemed to be arranged around chapter-long horror setpieces, building up to each one and wrapping it up. I couldn't see why these 4 particular teens were the narrators, why a couple of them were supposedly natural leaders, why a hard-to-believe little love connection popped up near the end. The list of the 6 different kinds of killers was never well-explained (and really, you made the list 7 items long by including the title of the list as #1? I hope that was corrected after this ARC). One of the characters wanted to find her brother but the others had no drive for anything, nothing that made me care about them.

But this whole book felt like horror, not just survival or zombie or whatever. Maybe I don't understand its accent.
Profile Image for Reynje.
272 reviews962 followers
November 6, 2012
3.5 stars

Here’s the thing about me and horror: it’s not so much the content as the source that bothers me.

Which is not to say I’m not terrified by scary things, because I am. Absurdly so. But always in the back of my mind is the question: where did this come from? It has always been much more disturbing for me to know that someone, somewhere, came up with whatever horrific scene is playing out on screen or on the page. That even the most unrealistic scenrios were born in very real places, and the most horrible things we can imagine were spawned in the human mind.

So if you ask me what I find truly terrifying, I guess I would say human capacity for evil. I find that idea infinitely more disturbing than say, a zombie apolocalypse.

And this is why Dark Inside worked for me as a genuinely scary story, because it’s about humanity unleashing their own evil upon the world. While this is immediately apparent in an obvious sense, as a suddenly released evil takes over much of mankind and causes them to become killing-machines, there is also a more subtle form. As those not overtaken and turned into “monsters” are forced to fight for their survival, they are also faced with situations in which their moral compasses are no longer effective. Previously unthinkable actions become necessity. And fear causes even the most well-intentioned do abhorrent things.

Dark Inside is told through five perspectives, which sounds unwieldy, but actually works fairly effectively for the story. Mason, Aries, Clementine and Michael are four teenagers battling to stay alive after the murderous rage (apparently instigated by a series of massive earthquakes) appears to have taken over most of the population. Their dawning cognizance of what is happening around them, and their reactions to it, essentially forms the bulk of the story; each of them trying to survive and navigate their way to relative safety. The fifth perspective, “Nothing,” gives a voice and context to the darkness enveloping the majority of humanity, while remaining eerily evasive and difficult to get a handle on.

This is a grim, violent book that doesn’t pull punches, particularly when it comes to individual characters’ actions. But it’s not just the brutality that’s depicted, occasionally the most shocking thing about this story is the choices the characters’ make, and then the consequences of those decisions. It’s not a predictable book, in that Roberts doesn’t shelter her characters, and she compels the reader to question them. They do unsympathetic things. They may or may not be or remain “good” people. There’s an intensely unsettling atmosphere about the novel, on the basis of this uncertainy around some of the characters, and it makes for fast reading.

While at a surface level this reads like an action-based novel, (which it is), I was surprised by how much Roberts was able to develop the characters in a limited amount of page time. Given the number of narrators and the rapid progression of the plot, a considerable amount of insight into each of the teenagers is provided, particularly through the choices they make to survive. Granted, it does at times feel very much as if this novel is laying the foundation, establishing the characters to be further developed as the series continues, but the charactersation is done well. The novel is written in the third person (with the exception of “Nothing”’s voice), yet Roberts manages to keep the characters distinct. It would have been easy for the viewpoints to blur in a novel of this pacing, but their storylines are substantial and fleshed-out so that they remain unambiguous.

Dark Inside sets itself from much of the apocalyptic YA fiction of late because it doesn’t adhere to the tropes and developments common to those novels. This book feels unpredictable, and almost unapologetic in its confronting content. There are no guarantees made, no assurances that things are going to turn out as expected. (By expected I mean as dictated by a lot of current apoc/dystopian YA – goodness prevails, love interests survive blah blah blah).

I’m curious to see where Roberts is taking this story, and while there’s a measure of closure at the end of Dark Inside, there are more than enough questions left unresolved to make me pick up the sequel.
Profile Image for Max Lau • Maxxesbooktopia.
161 reviews8 followers
November 28, 2017
“The stranger smiled at her. “Humanity has found a cure to a disease they never new existed.”- Dark Inside, Jeyn Roberts.

My thoughts: Introduction

Let us start off with the world-building and the atmosphere of this book. The atmosphere throughout this novel was crazily suspenseful. The constant pressure among the characters in the book filled the atmosphere with suspense- like I have said earlier, streams of tear-jerking tears and a spark of romantic vibes. All the atmosphere clung well together and that was what made the book great with all the mixed elements.

However, the world-building in this novel was a little lacklustre. It was actually going very well in the beginning, with no info-dumps and the story just flowed like how it was supposed to be. Then, the story came to the middle of the story and everything became confusing from there. It was as if the story went 90 degrees downhill but was able to save itself. Besides the middle part, I thought the ending saved the story for me because the world-building went back to normal. Therefore, I am going to give a 15 out of 25% for the world-building.

Moving on, let us talk about the pacing of the book. The pacing for this book was extremely quick with the constant action and the ongoing thoughts of the characters with their hopes and survival instincts to stay alive in a world that had gone mad. Although it was quick, it took me a couple of days to finish due to my school work and many other things that I had to accomplish during my days with this book. Thus, I was not able to finish it in 2 days.

Furthermore, there are quite a number of unexplained plots in this book and those unexplained plots led to plot holes. The plot holes started off with the gap between the time of the scenes the character were facing. For example, they were running from the monsters and out of the blue, ‘three weeks later’ appeared and nothing was really explained on how they managed to escape the monsters. Then, from that particular plot hole onwards, the same thing happened again near the end of the book. Therefore, I did not really enjoy this factor of the story.

In addition, I loved the way on how Jeyn managed to make the characters to intersect in their lives and although the scene of union between the characters was short, I still really loved it. Therefore, the score for the union between the characters is 10% out of 10% for me!

Moreover, there is a quote that I really loved and I would like to share it with you guys, right here, right now, of course. Here’s the quote:

“There are different types of people in the world. There are people who accept what’s in front of them unquestioningly.

The live in the dark. In defeat. Ignoring what the future might bring or how they might help to make things happen.

Then there are people like me. Optimists. They too live in the dark, in times like these, but dream of the light.

I trust in the possibilities of betterness. I believe there is more to life than this. I have to. There’s no other choices for me.”

Oh my gosh! This quote. Okay. Some characters did not have hope in the new world but this particular character named Chickadee stood up to me as a glowing star in this book. She was full of hope, full of happiness in the darkest time and it was not fair that she had to go through all those crappy things in the past. Thus, this quote will forever have a place in my heart!

As for the continuation of the review, I found the tone for this book to be very dark because there were a lot of killing and the author actually went to the length of describing the murder of a person including children as young as five years old. So, if you do not like those kind of things, I do not recommend you to pick this book up.

Finally, let us talk about the relationships between all the characters in this book. I thought the relationships in this book were very well planned and rounded as they were very compassionate about each other although they were not as nice as they were in the beginning. Thus, I would say that they have a great character improvement!

Now, let us move on to the writing section of the review!


“There are so many empty people walking around on this little planet. Lonely people. Angry people. Bitter. Forgotten.”- Dark Inside, Jeyn Roberts.

The writing style was crisp, articulate, flowery at times and mundane when it came to certain part of the story. It was crisp and articulate because it was easy to read and the story flowed smoothly along the trail.

However, when it came to the romance part of the novel the writing style turned all flowery and I did not like that because the writing style did not stay constant. Plus, when it came to certain part of the attacking element in the story, the writing style transformed into something milky and mundane. Therefore, I have many thoughts on the writing style of the book.

Other than those things above, I enjoyed the alternate point of views between the characters and I thought that it was a great addition to the story due to the fact that we, as readers, are able to capture the whole world and the struggles of each of the characters in the book. Therefore, a 5% out of 5% for the alternate point of views element!

Now, let us move on to the characters section!


Colin: He was the worse character in this book. He was a selfish little coward who does nothing to help up with his group of friends even if he voted to sacrifice himself to help them to get the food from the outside world. He was also a liar and an egocentric person who only thought for what is good for himself and not the others. Therefore, I disliked him and I will not care for this character.

Aries: I loved her. She was thoughtful of others and was careful enough not to provide conflict into her and others lives. Plus, she was a leader with all the best qualities and therefore, she was my favourite character in this book and as for her character development, I would say that it shot upwards like a seed to a plant.

Mason: The thing is, I did not really like Mason in the beginning. He was an alcoholic teenager with a mean personality that made him looked like a bully but as the story progressed forward, he started to realize that he was being an ass to everyone around him and when he opened up himself, it was the saddest and the most emotional scene in the book. Therefore, he had a great character development!

Michael: I loved him in the beginning. He was helpful, brave and careful at first but unfortunately the author destroyed his character (Why?) and made him a coward that could not believe that he betrayed his own group. However, that scene was what made his character shone again. He helped Clementine and began searching for his brother and that was where he learned his mistake. Therefore, I still enjoyed his character!

Clementine: She was in the middle of hilarious, smart and dumb. Everything she does make me laugh but sometimes it does not because she was going through a hard time and the action scenes between her and the crazies were not funny but scary. Therefore, I loved her character!

Daniel: I do not really know what to say about him because he comes and goes with absolutely no reason and he was hiding something. Something he knows but would not want to share and the author did not reveal what he was hiding from the crowd and the things he knew. Therefore, I have absolutely no idea what to talk about his character!


I am giving this book an 85% rating. I liked the book but it had its flaws and therefore, it did not make it up to the 90% list.

This Review is also posted at Maxxesbooktopia

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Profile Image for Dannii Elle.
2,034 reviews1,419 followers
May 28, 2018
Actual rating 3.5/5 stars.

In making an attempt to pick up the oldest unread tomes on my shelves I stumbled across this book. With no real gusto I begun my reading and was quickly situated in a eerie dystopian landscape, immersed in intrigue, and ensconced in a terror of all the events depicted.

I initially assumed this to be a zombie apocalypse story but the fact that it wasn't was where much of my early enthralment lay. Just exactly what has caused the destruction of our world and just exactly why humans have turned on each other in a brutal and sadistic fashion haunts the narrative and left me with the inability to put this book down before discerning these answers.

One thing I had certainly not anticipated, before picking this book up, was the extent that the brutality of humans would be explored. There are many scenes that were horrific and graphic in nature, so I would not advise this as a read for those sensitive to depictions of human suffering and bodily harm.

I appreciated how this world was explored from a variety of perspectives, and how each one added to the reader's understanding. I was especially intrigued by the perspective of 'nothing', which gave a chilling analysis to the events unfolding. Parts of this, however, were a little cliched in their construction and I found this, despite being limited in romance, to have set up for many relationships to unfold in the coming books.
Profile Image for Jamie.
124 reviews6 followers
September 24, 2011
“We would not go gentle into that good night.”



I haven’t read many apocalyptic books in my time. Frankly the prospect scares the hell out of me, so why would I want to read about it? But I just happened across Dark Inside in my local bookshop and thought, why not? It looks good, looks all action-packed and has an awesome cover. So I bought it.
It was one of the best things I have ever bought.

I have to start off by saying that this book is tense. And I mean it. You know when you’re watching a horror film? And you know something is going to happen, but you just can’t figure out what? That’s what it’s like reading Dark Inside, and I found that so exciting.

The foundation of this book may not be exactly original, with the whole end of the world zombie apocalypse thing going on, but I feel that Roberts has managed to inject enough of her own ideas to stop the book from becoming tiresome or boring. I liked how some of the “Baggers” (the crazy zombie-like humans that go around killing everyone) were highly intelligent, often talking to the human characters normally, sometimes even tricking them into believing that they are human. I also found the different perspectives compelling, they kept me reading because the story was always fresh and I found that I had to go on to the next chapter because I needed to know what was going on since I left the character last.

Speaking of characters, there are four main ones in this book, with lots of others recurring. We have Aries, Clementine, Michael and Mason. I honestly don’t have a favourite. I loved them all so much. Roberts has masterfully interwoven the sub-plots into the main story, like when Mason meets the chirpy Chickadee, and how their relationship blossoms only to be cruelly taken away by a twist of fate that changes Mason. And like how Michael has to make a vital decision, to live or die, even if it does mean leaving others to perish. Even Clementine and Aries have moments and decisions that impact their lives hugely, but I don’t feel that they’re as exponentially gut wrenching as the two boys’.

There’s also the secrecy of this book that grabs you and doesn’t let go. Throughout, we’re confronted with a character simply known as “Nothing” who often speaks in riddles and gives hints as to why the apocalypse may have happened. The reader learns, (or they think they learn, I could be completely wrong) who this “Nothing” is. It didn’t surprise me, but I don’t think it was intended to be surprising, instead it just made me want to know more. I wanted to know why some people weren’t affected by the madness, why the majority were. Why is this elusive “Nothing” so perceptive, why do they know things that the others don’t? So many questions! I can’t wait to find out the answers.

This book is chock full of action and adventure. It even has a smidgen of romance. Some comedy, and some sadness all the same. It’s a crazy creepy book, but in a sense, it’s beautiful too. It gives you faith in humans whilst also ripping that same faith away.


Profile Image for Crowinator.
806 reviews355 followers
November 9, 2011
This cover might have been cool without the giant floating eyes at the top. The huge crack in the barren earth from the earthquakes, the hazy ruined city in the background, and the indistinct people walking all work with the story (though it reminds me a little bit of the end of a music video), and I like the title rising up out of the fog, too. Even though black-veined eyes are a thing in the story, they don't really mesh here and are in fact really distracting. Why are publishers so enamored with close-ups of eyeballs anyway? Gross.

Actual thoughts on the book to come later. This one didn't fully work for me for a lot of reasons (too many narrators with indistinct voices; no explanation of what's actually happening to change people except some vague, portentous comments about evil always lurking within humanity and how we maybe deserve to die out) but it's a decent, action-filled debut with a compelling enough premise that I'd like to at least see where it's going. It's a mix of a ton of other apocalypse/post-apocalypse novels and movies, some of which I mentioned in a status update, but it's at least putting them together well, and I hope there is more character definition in the sequel.
Profile Image for Mia.
332 reviews202 followers
August 31, 2015
A brief synopsis of Dark Inside: Something something survival something humanity is bad something something darkness and death something something evil something killers something something something.

Yeah, it was basically a half-assed, sloppy, boring, poorly written stock apocalypse novel. So stale and uneventful, in fact, that I DNF'd about 65% of the way through.
Profile Image for Zainab.
381 reviews499 followers
August 13, 2018
I have to say, that's one hell of a gorgeous cover.
If you like anything related to the apocalypse with a little bit of mystery, then this book is perfect for you. I honestly didn't even realize I reached the last page when I did because it is so so thrilling that you're just not able to put it down. Also, before you think it's just a typical zombie novel with those stupid drooling 'zombies' (I kinda prefer the term walkers because The Walking Dead ftw) they're not. The 'zombies' talk and walk like normal human beings and some are even more intelligent than a typical human being.
Anyway, go give it a read. It's awesome!
Profile Image for Beyond Birthday.
143 reviews231 followers
Shelved as 'dnf-or-on-hold'
June 25, 2019
Giving up on page 123. A post apocalyptic book about people turning into raging murderers after an earthquake should be at least entertaining.
I can't even be fucked to give a single, lonely shit about anything that happens to its cast of faceless characters.

Dark Inside, sayoonara.
Profile Image for Gabby.
1,236 reviews26.6k followers
November 28, 2019
Wow! This book had me interested from the very first page, and I literally couldn't put it down. I read it in 2 days! This is the first apocalyptic type of book I've ever read, and it was so fascinating! I'm not usually a big fan of YA but this book was an exception. It was suspenseful from the very beginning to the very end, which I really appreciate because I hate when books drag on and get boring. I found the "Nothing" chapters to be a little confusing, but it only intrigued me more and made me more curious to figure out what was going on. The ending was very sweet and appropriate for this book. I didn't have any problems with it and I am very excited to read the next book in this series! :)
Profile Image for Susan.
773 reviews23 followers
April 26, 2017
So where to begin with this book....first off it's the first time I was sorry I went in totally blind on this book and didn't read the synopsis. I am not a zombie apocalyptic movie or book kind of girl and this book was zombie like people. In the end I ended up liking the book and wanting to see if anyone I liked died. Now I have to see what happens in the next book...uggg I hate my book OCD. I thought this book would show my wimpy side but it wasn't as scary as I thought it would be.
Profile Image for Acordul Fin.
475 reviews166 followers
June 1, 2017
I stayed up until 4 AM to finish it even though I knew it was Monday and I had to be at work in a few hours. But I couldn't stop reading. The book was fast-paced, griping and eerie. It's not a perfect book, I was pretty skeptical during the first few chapters, but after that I couldn't put it down. I probably shouldn't have read it in the dark (Kindle Paperwhite) as it was much too creepy. When I went to the bathroom I kept expecting something to jump at me from the shadows :))).
Profile Image for tonya..
227 reviews243 followers
July 28, 2011
In a time when the YA market is so saturated with dystopia that it has all but become blase, Dark Inside offers a new and unique spin on the genre. (Though to be honest I don't even know if dystopia is the right descriptor to tag this with, but it's what the publisher called it so we'll go with that. ;)

For starters, rather than set sometime in the future after the apocalyptic event, Dark Inside is a contemporary novel, set at the advent of the shift. This is not a story that builds a new world out of the rubble of the old, but rather tells the story of how our current world breaks down. And the way it breaks down is people turning on people. Not through world wars or a military coup or nuclear weapons as with so many other dystopians, but with a dark and insidious voice that infiltrates and overtakes the majority of the population, turning them into psychopaths bent on killing anyone in their path.

There's a metaphor here, and a good one I bet, but unfortunately the way in which Dark Inside was written is so distracting, I can hardly grasp it.

The story is told in third person limited narration style, through the eyes of five different people. Five. In a three hundred and change page book, that doesn't give me much room to get to know anyone, especially when there is a larger issue in play. I never felt I knew any of the narrators well enough to become emotionally invested in what happened to them, and had a hard time keeping track of who was who. And while their stories did eventually intersect, it was not until the very end of the book and by that point, I was just ready to be finished.

I don't know if this is a series, but given the way it wrapped up I assume is has to be. It was not a cliffhanger, but it was very anticlimactic.

Aside from those major issues, I found there to be too many coincidences and conveniences that allowed characters to escape or hide or remain undiscovered. Dialogue felt flat and trite in many instances, and the narrator's voice never shifted between the characters--and also never felt like an authentic teenage voice.

In my opinion, this would have been a much better read if it had focused on one single character and had been written in first person. It needed the immediacy and the intimacy of being inside someone's head and going through the horrors with them.

A very generous three stars for a great concept and a very poor execution.
Profile Image for Alyssa.
135 reviews150 followers
March 5, 2012
This book is a grim, violent, but mostly empty post-apocalyptic novel that disappoints throughout.

Because the narrative is split between 4 different points of view, the reader is forced to read the beginning of the novel 4 separate times. Each narrative shows a different story with different characters, but each is equally grim and disturbing.

However, what Dark Inside fails to do is to make its grim and disturbing content actually matter. There is little significance to be found when characters that are thin and vapid are subject to such cataclysmic events in rapid fire and consequently feel numb and empty. In fact, the protagonists feel so numb that one wonders if they are even worth reading about anymore.

The narrative itself was filled with awkward language and predictable plot situations. Reading Dark Inside felt a bit like watching every post-apocalyptic or disaster movie ever made in alternating clips.

While many of the plot turns were predictable or at least unsurprising, the writing itself was stilted, awkward, and frustrating. For example, from page 118 of the US hardback edition: "They both made fists with their hands and lightly punched each other."

... Do you mean they fist-bumped?

Again from page 125:
"'I'm looking forward to it. After living with you for three weeks, I can honestly say you need it.'
'This coming from the guy who farts and snores.'
'You've got to stop using that hair gel, kid. It's starting to rot your brain.'
They grinned at each other."

There are several problems with this exchange, but the primary concern is that it is so easy to pick apart. What teenage guy complains about an older guy's farting and snoring? How does snoring make someone gross? If they hadn't bathed in over 3 weeks, why would someone make a joke about using hair gel? How is the hair gel comment an appropriate response to the farting and snoring comment?

With poorly written exchanges such as this, Dark Inside's grim action sequences and divided narrative are made the strongest part of the novel. But they are not strong enough.

Perhaps Dark Inside would have been more successful being told with only one point of view with one really great protagonist. With the 4 narratives, it's too easy for a reader to say, "who cares?" If their situations are in no way significant from others in this world, then why read about them at all?
Profile Image for Misty.
300 reviews67 followers
September 7, 2011
This book really dives into the action and had me on the edge of my seat, heart racing, from start to finish. It really makes your think about kind of person you'd be if the world was in an apocalyptic disarray and what you'd do to survive, as it follows four different characters on their journeys.

The book isn't sugar-coated either, terrible things happen that I didn't guess that made it feel realistic and though I suspect a supernatural element to 'the baggers' I think it really shows people can turn into monsters.

I really enjoyed all of the characters but i'd say Aries was a favourite, after surviving an horrific bus crash she becomes a great leader for her little group and does things even though she's terrified. I also liked the dark side of Mason, it was really interesting that we also got to read about someone who was slightly affected by the darkness that has turned most people into vicious killers.

The only problem I had was about a quarter way in everyone was left on a little cliffhanger and then it suddenly skipped ahead three weeks and there was no explanation as to how they got out of their situations.

It was really great as the four stories eventually bled together and though it ended with lots of questions it still ended well and I can't wait for the second instalment for the answers and to see where they all go next.

Favourite quotes:

"The nothingness. No fire trucks, ambulances, police cars. No people, cars, steroes, televisions, computers. All the things we use to replace the silence of loneliness. All the distractions we buy that fill up the empty voids inside our souls. It's all gone." - Daniel

'London, England, has riots that stain the cobblestones redder than anything Jack the Ripper ever dreamed of.'
Profile Image for Kseniia Okhremenko.
128 reviews12 followers
August 1, 2016
легкая постапокалипстика) читается быстро и главное, что затянуло)
повествование идется с точки зрения аж 5 персонажей: Мейсон, Майкл, Клементина, Ариес и Ничто, а точнее Даниэль, темная лошадка со своими тараканами в голове.
что ж тема апокалипсиса и последствий не нова, но прежде я ее наблюдала только с экранов телевизора, это первая моя книга в подобном жанре.
когда читаешь и представляешь что там творится, реально становится жутковато. Эти загонщики как зомби, вот только если зомби тебя не сожрут, ты хоть присоединишься к их компании и будешь ходить делать новых зомби, а вот эти гады убирают всех подчистую: заживо сжигают, избивают до смерти, расстреливают. Персонажи полностью нераскрыты, думаю во второй книге акцент сделают именно на это.
Про книгу могу сказать такими словами : Расчленовка ! Мясо ! Кровь ! И все - КОНЕЦ !
P.S. про поцелуй забыла
Profile Image for ☼ rf ☼.
201 reviews107 followers
December 23, 2016
The reviews for this are WRONG. Well, not wrong but they mislead me a little.

See, all the reviews that I’ve read from people that I follow, are negative. They made me put off reading this book for a DAMN YEAR which was such a huge mistake. Especially since it was only £1 when I actually bought it.

Turns out, this book kicks ass. I mean sure, I get where those negative reviews are coming from. There are some faults with this book. I’m not denying that in the slightest. However, in my opinion, it definitely wasn’t deserving of anything lower than a three. It was fun, entertaining and so so much better that I though it was going to be.

Maybe I’ve been so receptive to this because I went in expecting something terrible? Whatever it is, if you choose to read this I hope that you manage to find some kind of enjoyment in it, as I did!
Profile Image for Abby.
232 reviews47 followers
April 19, 2014
'tis a pity this book is so bad
It has an average of 3.93, which is pretty good...
The plot was boring, even thought it sounds so great!
However, it was written well, but there is very little depth to the characters. There are so many POV's it's ridiculous. It's so hard to keep up...
The concept for the plot is great, but something went wrong there didn't it Jeyn?
Profile Image for Beth.
300 reviews566 followers
December 30, 2011
2.5 stars

"Dark Inside" and I got off to such a good start. It's the kind of book that I have a great love/hate relationship with: the premise is so chilling and frightening but in an addictive, fast-paced way, but, like most people, I'm terrified of something so huge and inexplicable happening to my friends and family on a mass scale. In the opening chapters, "Dead Inside" lived up to its potential, with a hurtling, nauseous description of the four main characters getting into accidents, having their schools blown up, being randomly attacked and their families dying brutally. Like most people, this is pretty much all of my worst fears packed into several horrifying setpieces. As you can see, I read this long book in one day, probably my fastest read of the year, but, despite the fairly good pacing and the wince-inducing occurrences, looking back on the plot, I can't help but think that it's all a little...boring.

Don't get me wrong. It isn't, at first. At first, it's fucking terrifying. Law and order breaks down totally, utterly and immediately in a realistic and making-me-rock-backwards-and-forwards-in-my-chair way. Good people die badly. People turn on each other in the most vicious ways possible. And while I know that YA couldn't really go all-out with the nasty violence and that it would have all felt like overkill by the end of this book and I don't object to some off-screen action - Greek tragedy shows us that sometimes what happens out of the audience's sight is far more awful than anything a writer could pull on them - it all becomes more than a bit samey by the end of "Dark Inside." That, of course, makes me a horrible person, because a pregnant woman gets dragged away in the beginning and a little boy is almost murdered in the middle. Buuuuut it's all dampened by the fact that we know nothing about these people. Nothing. Not their names, not their families, not even their fate! By the end, it felt like shock value over substance.

Although, in all fairness, Roberts treats all her characters the same, even her main ones. Maybe it's just me, as an English person (we prefer our mundane names over here), but "Clementine" and "Aries" (especially the latter) bugged me throughout. Third person is effective in these kind of novels because it allows for a greater sense of world-wide breakdown (which is sort of used well within the narrative), and gives unpredictability (which really wasn't). We don't know much about these characters, and even what we do know is pretty stock. Mason (who I will mess up with Michael liberally throughout this review; I really struggled with which was which) suffers from archetypal Survivor's Guilt because his mother's death is what caused him to escape the bombing of his school in which all his friends died. Daniel is the hot, brooding, unlikeable boy with A SECRET!!! Clemetine has someone to live and look for. Aries is our archetypal moron. Third person, which could have been perfect for this novel, was used monotonously and repetitively so that none of the rhythm of the fight scenes were really felt.

Most of the characters were passable on the scale of Moron-->Genius scale. Mostly everyone was unrealistically lucky rather than totally moronic, with one very large exception: Aries. At first, she was understandably terrified and out of it. That is all fair enough. (I would be such a shivering, dribbling wreck in the sort-of-but-not-really zombie apocalypse that I can relate.) But, later in the book, when Aries is supposed to have got more clued up on survival tips to the point where she's actually the leader of her little group - right up until Daniel, the prick brooding hot boy who sort of saved her life by telling her to go to the high school at the beginning. Given what a mess she was, I can sort of understand being indebted to him. To me, the debt would have cleared once Aries risked her own life taking care of him for two days (a lifetime in the apocalypse). But oh no no. Apparently this not-very-special act of life-saving earned Daniel Aries's undying devotion, despite the fact that he is very shifty, has a habit of abandoning her and doesn't seem all that trustworthy. This gets to the point where she endangers all their lives - including her entire group's - by refusing to leave Daniel when he's essentially telling her to get the fuck out? He didn't want her, but ooohhhh noooo, Ariel thinks because she likes being in a group so much that Daniel will like it to. Ummm, what? Has she not seen what can happen to survivors in this apocalypse? Does she really want to pair up with a guy who doesn't seem all that fond of her? I can only assume by the description of her stroking his cheek and her heartbeat quickening that he is the Obligatory Love Interest. Shudder.

The thing is, the plot is nonsense. We don't know why this virus/disease/personality disorder/THING has come over these people, or why it only affects some people. And that's okay. It fits very well for the book to evoke the chaos and confusion that can come with true, absolute ignorance, and fits so well with Roberts' horror mould of things that are beyond our control (total? EVERYTHING). It's totally fine. But accepting that the entire plot is based around very unlikely contrivance comes, to me, with the unspoken promise that the rest of your plot will concern very likely events. Roberts is good at this to begin with, what with society crumbling in an inevitable, horrible way, but, as time goes on, she seems to throw any mini semblance of logic to the wind in an attempt to craft surprises. For example: to begin with, the virus seems to be more or less uncontrollable, a brain-eating disease that takes away everything about you, including your free will. Then suddenly it's possible for some people to retain their (amazing) intellect and articulation, despite the fact that these zombies are supposedly governed by nothing but pure bloodlust-rage. Why? Who the hell cares. It just makes a good twist. My next point is a fine line to walk but it did bug me that every single one of the survivors'...survival skills were based on 99.9999999999% (more often than not, 100%) luck. Of course a massive degree of luck is required to survive any major disaster, and I could forgive all of the luck that happened in the immediate aftermath of the apocalypse, but afterwards, it was stretched to breaking point. Aries's team manages to collect an amazing amount of supplies, including stuff like bicycles, despite the fact that most of the zombies seem to be at least a little logic and capable of plotting, as the killing technique of most of them seems to be surrounding buildings and setting them on fire, to either burn everyone inside or catch them as they ran out. If the zombies are at least pretty smart - and some of them are shown to be incredibly so - why wouldn't they burn down all the supply shops to kill off any remaining humans? Well, because then it wouldn't be possible for Roberts' characters to survive. I swear this pattern repeats itself about a thousand times in the novel:

1. Get attacked by 'bagger'
2. Fight off 'bagger'
3. Do something incredibly stupid
4. Amazing luck and/or the 'bagger's' amazing stupidity facilitate escape that previously seemed totally impossible.

This leaves "Dark Inside" with a grand total of Not Much Plot At All. I sort of think I should stop reading books that are going to be the first in a series/trilogy. Because, I'm sorry, this was not a story at all. This was a thorough exploration of the jumping-off point for a story, i.e. the beginning, so this wasn't even a novel. It was a third of a novel. I have no idea what the next book will be about; sure, we left our characters hanging - not the cliffhanger kind - but I can't see where "Dark Inside" could next go except for a lot more of the "walking for miles and miles" and "repetitive fight scene" combination. There is no intrigue, no sequel hook, no real reason why I should read on except for the world-building (which was good!) and the fate of the characters (who were skimmed over, bland and not remotely interesting enough to pull me back in). Ultimately, nothing really happened. Oh, sure, there were a lot of fight scenes, and lots of minor secondary characters got killed off. But I honestly can't think of one plot thread that I am excited to read about in the next book, or one revelation of importance that could tie the 'arc' (this is a trilogy, right? Surely it has to have an arc of some sort?) together.

The most annoying thing about all of this is that the best moments of "Dark Inside" come when Roberts injects a cold syringe of substance into her ass-kicking plot. Twiggy, a Sociology professor turned zombie, theorises that the virus comes about because of the '"push-button" generation', and the innate frustration and repressed loathing - both of self and particularly others - are freed by the virus, but that they were also there are all along, as a product of urban rage and hatred. Twiggy's speech about how all great civilisations destroyed themselves from within eventually, and now it was our turn, was chilling and amazingly fascinating. Maybe it's a little trite, but that kind of widespread emotion is a dark and almost endlessly interesting place for a YA zombie novel, of all the things, to mine. Best of all, it's amazingly plausible; in a hyperbolic, science-fictiony way, there it's a wild but not stratospheric leap between road rage/the race of people who will kill each other over something as mundane as Thanksgiving turkey and the rage-fuelled automatons that mostly populate "Dark Inside." It's just a shame that this dark gem is hidden inside such a bloated, monotonous plot.
Profile Image for AM.
26 reviews
December 24, 2011
I absolutely loved this book, and it's not a genre I should read.

and I'm going to tell you why.

The Four POVs:

Yes. I like them.
It's sort of funny, I know a lot of people who read it, did not like the four POVs. I feel a lot of it's sort of bias, though. A few of them say, they instantly dislike it because it was four POVs. That's not giving the book a fair chance.

I dunno. Maybe I'm bias cuz I usually love books with multiple POVs.I feel as if I'm reading four different stories weaved into one big book.
When the two characters actually met up, I was like yay<3

So I think that made it pretty awesome.

The Plot:
Let me start by saying this: Dark Inside it's not a dystopia. THANK GOD. To me, this is apocalyptic fiction since it's set during the end of the world, not after. I love it. It's hard to find books like that. Let's start with the Baggers. They scare the living hell(can I say hell?) They're like zombies, but way, way, way scarier. Zombies at least kill for a reason--they want to eat your delicious flesh. Baggers have no reason to kill you. They do it because they can and because they want to. The scary thing is that it hits pretty close to home. Humans are one of the few animals that kill for FUN. And serial killers, they go on rampages without a single thought. That's what scares me about the baggers. I'm not usually scared by books but the psychology aspect of the book makes it cool.

Back to the four POVs, the subplots make it amazing too. There are some really heartwarming parts in the book like...SPOILERS BEGIN HERE.


Here's what I loved the most about the book. The characters. It's a simple as that. I cannot like a book or even finish a book if I hate the characters. No matter how beautiful the writing is or how great the plot might be, I can't read a book if I hate the main character. This, thankfully, wasn't a problem with Dark Inside.

It's really hard to pick a favorite character. They're all so awesome:
No one is a villain. No one is a hero.

Mason is really fascinating, but I really love him. I think he might be the one who changes the most through the book.

Clementine kicks butt. She really does kick butt and she might be my favorite female character in the book. Aries kicks butt too(not as much as Clementine, though.) She really cares for her friends and she could've crumbled down and become weak, but she remained strong.

Michael, there's something about Michael that makes me love him for some reason. There's a charm about him and still not as much as Clementine, though ;D

Daniel. He's the only character that's almost as intriguing as Mason, but he's pretty darn interesting. I really like him too.

An honorable mention goes to Chickadee. Okay, this sounds weird, but I can relate a lot to her. She's short, she smiles and talks a lot. She's the one who says "I'm such a girl." Which sort of makes me raise an eyebrow at the claims of misogyny when Chickadee says this only once and the stuff she had to deal with. She was strong. A lot of the female characters are a strong in this book, actually.

I also love that it's set in Canada.
How many books are set in Canada, come on?

Those are the reasons why I feel this book deserves five stars.
Profile Image for Michele at A Belle's Tales.
528 reviews3 followers
September 26, 2012
Although I was tied up with other reading obligations, I bought Dark Inside after it came highly recommended by Christy's Love of Books. I told myself I would NOT begin reading it until I had taken care of all the things on my to-do list. But then, I decided to take just one little peek to see how it started out. Before I knew it, I was turning the last page and scrambling to buy book two, Rage Within. This is not a read-a-little-here-and-there kind of book. This book consumed me, and I still haven’t been able to think about anything else. It is exciting and thought-provoking and will have you questioning everything you thought you knew about humanity.

Dark Inside is the gripping journey of four teens separately vying to stay alive in the disorder and chaos of the world that once was, eventually leading them to one another, unifying them in their fight for survival.

I love multiple POV’s, but this is probably my favorite example of how brilliantly multiple perspectives can be written. There are four main voices in Dark Inside: Michael, Mason, Aries and Clementine; and, for the first time while reading a book, I have a hard time choosing a favorite character because they are all so incredible.

The chilling voice of “Nothing” is a particular point of view that left me with goosebumps and more suspicions than I could count:

“They know we’re here. They’re coming for us.
What lies beneath has pushed its way to the surface once again.
Time to get away while there is still air left in our lungs.
But they will still come.”

And, although I included this particular quote in my Teaser Tuesday last week, it is worthy of another mention:

“I want to stop. I want someone to help me. Help me, before I kill her.”

Feel those little hairs standing up on the back of your neck? Darlings, I haven’t even scratched the surface.

Amazing writing; wonderful, mesmerizing characters; and an unbelievably intense and thrilling ride have made Dark Inside my favorite post-apocalyptic read this year.

“We carved our names in the fallen tree. Our tiny mark.
Our proof that we still desired life.
We would not go gently into that great night.”

Now, I really must fulfill some of those obligations before I begin Rage Within. Well… maybe just one little peek…

Review originally posted on my blog A Belle's Tales
Profile Image for ⭐Anny⭐ (Book Princess) .
435 reviews262 followers
February 11, 2021
4.5 stars
I went into this book knowing barely anything and ended up really loving it! If you like a fast pace, post apocalyptic read you should definitely pick this book up!

In this version of the apocalypse, after several earthquakes people start going crazy, driven mad by some kind of inner rage that makes them attack and kill other people. They're not zombies, but sometimes they resemble them. Nobody knows why they turned into these 'monsters', and you never know who's gonna be next.

Dark Inside tells the story of 4 teenagers who have to deal with the catastrophe. At first, it was a bit confusing because the 4 POVs were almost too much, but after a while I had gotten to know the characters more and it wasn't that confusing anymore. It was easy for me to get to know the characters and to feel with them, and I began to really like some of them. They had their own stories and their goals and I began to care for them.

The book is pretty fast paced, so even when there's not that much action happening for a while (fights for example), I always wanted to know what would happen next. The writing was easy to follow and I never got bored.

I really liked how everything came together in the end (I'm not going to say more here) and it left me excited for the sequel. Dark Inside was a thrilling novel with many different things going on and I'm glad I picked it up!
Profile Image for Anastasia.
186 reviews49 followers
June 24, 2014
Отличный представитель постапокалипсиса. Динамичная, не отпускающая ни на минуту, временами даже заставляющая задуматься книга. Отдельно отмечу, что автору удалось совершенно по-разному писать о 4 главных героях, раскрывая мотивы их поступков с личной колокольни каждого. Эти поступки были не всегда приятными, но всегда реальными. Очень понравилось (а это у нас теперь редкость, к сожалению), что автор не загрузил книгу любовно-романтическими соплями, сделав акцент на другом. Я совершенно не зря потратила на нее время и обязательно прочитаю продолжение в ближайшем будущем.
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