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!