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The Madness Underneath (Shades of London, #2)
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The Madness Underneath (Shades of London #2)

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  9,572 ratings  ·  1,607 reviews
When madness stalks the streets of London, no one is safe…

There's a creepy new terror haunting modern-day London.
Fresh from defeating a Jack the Ripper killer, Rory must put her new-found hunting skills to the test before all hell breaks loose…

But enemies are not always who you expect them to be and crazy times call for crazy solutions. A thrilling teen mystery.
Paperback, UK, 290 pages
Published February 26th 2013 by HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks (first published February 1st 2013)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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After loving Maureen Johnson from afar, largely via her very entertaining Twitter feed, I was thrilled that she was venturing into the world of speculative fiction by delving into the horror of Jack the Ripper, ghosts, and mystery via a London boarding school and secret police force. That’s much more up my alley than her usual contemporary route. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy The Name of the Star, I didn’t forget about it, and am still constantly recommending it to readers over a year later. N ...more
Apr 08, 2012 Bern marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yet-to-buy

What is it with this series and ugly ass covers? Thank god the blurbs are always awesome or else I'd shun this so hard it wouldn't even know what hit it
If you're like me, whenever you get invested in a book series, you're worried the remaining books won't live up to the first one, right? Well, you won't have to worry about that with The Madness Underneath. It is one of the rare ones. A sequel that is even better than the first one. It is everything you hope for in a sequel. This book has made me feel so many genuine emotions (scared, sad, worried and heart broken) and the ending is a whopper.

Rory is one of my favorite characters. I love her vo
I am REALLY curious about what is going to happen in this book after what all happened in the last few chpts. of the first book. I am wondering if Rory is going to be considered a threat to society or something becasue of "what she did" in the last few pgs. of the first book. I'm really excited to see where it takes her and hopefully Stephen along the way! (For some reason I get a good vibe between her and him instead of Jerome, because Rory and Jerome's relationship doesn't scream unique to me ...more
Cora Tea Party Princess
I just have to get this out of my system... NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

After the first book, I wasn't expecting much from this book. It would have been wrong for this one to be as twisted and creepy as the first, it would have been too much. But it stays in the same unique universe.

But I wasn't expecting that. Or that. Or that.

Although at times The Madness Underneath feels like a filler, a space between the first and third books when nothing too much *can* happen, it is great in its own righ
Kristina Horner
This book was a roller coaster. And by that, I mean the kind that putt along the entire time, to the extent where you start to wonder if maybe you accidentally just got on a kiddie ride, then OMG I WAS NOT EXPECTING THIS DROP I'M GONNA BARF.

It definitely suffered from middle book syndrome, as it's Book 2 in a trilogy... but it felt like the first half resolved issues set up in book 1, and the second half ramped up to the inevitably crazy and exciting book 3. I was actually quite let down, until
Morgan Walsh
Jan 27, 2012 Morgan Walsh marked it as to-read
What exactly will this book be about? I LOVED The Name of the Star, and I am dying for the sequel to be released, but I'm confused as to what it will be about. The kind-of cliffhanger of book one raised the potential for the sequel, but the Ripper is gone, so... will there be a 3rd Ripper? Will the Ripper return? What happens to Jerome and Rory?!?! Extremely cute couple, but I can't deny that I'm curious if Steven and Rory will get together.... Will there even be a bad ghost in this book, or wil ...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
Can I be honest? I feel... a bit manipulated. I am going through a horrible reading slump right now, so I know that I am a lot less tolerant than I would have been prior to this dry spell. So my review of this book might be a bit harsher. I feel that despite my rather harsh criticism, I am being fair and respectful, which are crucial to me as a reviewer.

I loved the first book, The Name of the Star, and I gave it five stars. I actually thought it was quite brilliant. In comparison, my feelings ar
I have an axiom that if a character in a book is engaging enough then even watching them chew oatmeal will be interesting. Maureen Johnson has found a strong, memorable voice in her protagonist/narrator Rory Deveaux, a Lousiana girl transplanted to London. Rory has a colorful personality, injecting random asides and humorous descriptions into everything, and telling embarrassing stories about her family when she gets nervous.

Some people don't enjoy the character because she's not very heroic, bu
My main problem with this second book was the lack of be honest, this was really more of an in-between book. Yes, it's interesting to see Rory try to reconcile what happened to her in the last book and what to do with her new ability. However, the book didn't really feel like it started until I was about 60% through. Everything before that point was Rory kind of wandering around trying to decide what to do, being confused and directionless. I think that would have been interesting if R ...more
Khanh (Clowns, Nightmares, and Bunnies)
352 pages. About 200 pages too long as far as relevant content goes.

Rory is recovering from her injury in the previous book, and spends much of her time moping around in Bristol with her parents. She then gets permission to go back to Wexford, where she spends more time moping around, tentatively and reluctantly embracing her new role as a new Terminus (but not really doing much about it or with her new powers). Actually, she spends much of the book doing nothing BUT moping. This isn't Shades of
Felicity Disco
I need some time to... absorb this... but whoa. Whoa. WHOA.

Okay, I wrote the above immediately after finishing, and now I've slept on it and it's the next morning, so I'll try to be a little more articulate. THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD. I almost don't want to say ANYTHING because I want you to be SURPRISED by everything, but let's just say that the concern I've seen about THE NAME OF THE STAR wrapping things up too neatly to allow for more books is NOT something you should be worrying about. There i
Shannon Duane
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Warning: There are major spoilers for book one in this review. I advise you to read it first.

In THE NAME OF THE STAR, book one of the Shades of London series, American exchange student Rory discovered that she could see ghosts. Her ability got her mixed up with the Shades - Boo, Callum, and Stephen - and their hunt for a man copying the Jack the Ripper murders. Rory's trying to recover mentally from her stabbing, but she's having trouble. It doesn't help that she's been turned into a human termi
God, I was so disappointed with this book! So very disappointed.

I adored The Name of the Star and I thought it was really cool to read Maureen Johnson's version of speculative fiction and urban fantasy/paranormal/what-have-you since the majority of her books have been of the contemporary fiction variety. TNotS was refreshing, but still had the MJ signature writing style.

While The Madness Underneath still retains that same style, it does not do the premise of its predecessor justice. Where th
I really liked this book. A lot.
Especially because it is composed by so many great things.

Great story.
Great characters.
Great MC.
Flawless writing (with funny dialogues and creepy parts).

Imagine a table full of your favorite desserts (I'm using a metaphoric example with food, because just like Rory, I much appreciate the subtle art of eating). Even though you want to eat them all, you can not, because your poor stomach would clearly not resist. So you pick up a plate and you serve yoursel
Cover Blurb: Yes or No? Divided. If I saw this book without knowing anything about it, I may not have been inclined to pick it up just because it doesn't really especially ghostly or intriguing. But I do like the title font, and there is something slightly haunting about it when you know what the series is about.

Characters: Rory is a blast. She's got a great sense of humor, is practical for the most part, and not overly emotional. Rory has suffered some series trauma, but rather than losing her
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins Publishers and Netgalley.)
This is book 2 in the ‘Shades of London’ series, and picks up a couple of months after the end of book 1.
**Warning – some unavoidable spoilers for book 1 ‘The Name of The Star’**
Following Rory’s encounter with the ‘Jack the Ripper’ copycat in book 1, she’s been recovering at her parents rented home in Bristol, and seeing a therapist 3 times a week, even though she
I read this in one sitting, in raw panic, while stress eating to combat my terror for Rory and her friends. The Madness Underneath is fantastic. Even though Maureen Johnson made me cry AGAIN (it seems to be her hobby), I highly recommend it! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to eat this entire box of crackers with this jar of Cheese Whiz while I impatiently wait for the rest of the series.
Apr 14, 2012 Kita marked it as to-read
Thoughts on the Cover
Is it just me... or does that cover look A HELL OF A LOT like the Morganville Vampires series?
I put off reading the second installment to this series for a long, long time. I don't know why - I didn't read reviews on The Madness Underneath, I downloaded a sample that I never got around to reading, and I genuinely enjoyed The Name of the Star. I've shown no other signs of psychic ability, but I think I just knew this one was going to suck.

And suck it DID. This book was utterly ridiculous. Rory was a character I found witty, fun, and unique in The Name of the Star. In The Madness Undernea
This book and this series, Shades of London, is awesome! This book doesn't have the degree of frenzy that book #1 does, when Rory is being stalked by a Jack-the-Ripper type killer, but instead focuses more on the group of special people that Rory belongs with. It also seems to start with one subject and lead off in a whole new direction. This was fine with me. Although the ending was rather sad, it leaves it wide open for the series to continue in a similar but new vein. I can't wait for the nex ...more
Dear Ms. Johnson,

You have successfully crushed my hopes for this series. Please tell me that the ending of The Madness Underneath (as well as half the plot) was a joke, and Rory is about to jump out of the bushes and yell "gotcha!"

Of course, I'm sure you're giggling gleefully at my distress. But for the sake of my sanity, I am requesting that you fix it. Please?

A heartbroken reader


When The Madness Underneath begins, Rory is in Bristol at her parents ho
I quite liked the first book in this series, 'The Name of the Star', but I REALLY, REALLY LIKED this one. And I don't want to take anything away from the story but I think one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much was the narrator. Nicola Barber is without a doubt one of the best audio book narrators that I have ever listened to and I ended up even doing housework just so I could listen to this book!
Rory, who survived a Jack the Ripper attack has been sent away to Bristol with her parents but ends
More shenanigans and reviews can be found at Ransom Reads


Ghosts are basically the only thing that really creep me out. In THE NAME OF THE STAR, the ghost was really scary and appeared a lot, being central to the story. There are less ghosts in THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH, some of the people being creepier and more important.

Secret Police

Like spies, there's just something like the existence of secret police/government factions that deal with... unusual things. The attraction
2.5 stars - Spoilers

Not bad but not great either. I was more entertained and impressed with the first book (The Name of the Star).
At the end of The Name of the Star, Rory was recovering from being stabbed by the Ripper ghost, she also developed super speshul ghost vanquishing powers (eye roll), and on top of that her parents took her out of her London school to keep her safe.
I was wondering how Rory would get back to school and the ghost busting gang she left behind. I was expecting some brilli
There is a stage in a reading experience where you expect a turn in the road...and get faced with a freaking cliff.

When you're expecting another page and get hit with the Acknowledgements.
When you're expecting rainbows and butterflies, and get given heartbreak and chaos on a gilded platter.
When you're expecting your OTP to remain intact, and the author decides to rip your heart in two.

Needless to say, this book has been rather informative. It taught me not to be ashamed of needing therapy; a le

The Madness Underneath by Maureen Johnson picks up three weeks after the events of The Name of the Star. Rory is now in Bristol with her parents after having been removed fom Wexford College in London after the attack that almost killed her. She’s attending therapy but isn’t doing much talking, all she wants is to be back at college and to be with her new friends Steven, ** and Boo. But once back she’s sure there is another ghostly presence haunting London and she’s determined to do something to
Jeanne Izzy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Guys, I'm gonna get right to the point with this one: if you haven't already, go out and get yourself a copy of this book. If you're a fan of the series, I definitely recommend picking up a copy (and possible taking a day off to recuperate after reading... I know I am). I've been a huge, ginormous fan of Maureen Johnson for years, and if you enjoyed her other work but haven't checked out the Shades of London series, you really should. Trust me, you will not regret it.

Now, if you don't mind... *g
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Maureen knew from an early age she wanted to be a writer. She went to high school at an all-girls' Catholic school and graduated from University of Delaware with a degree in writing. She now lives and writes in New York City.

Many of the adventures Maureen's characters face in her books are based on real-life stories. Maureen has traveled all over Europe, and is a Secret Sister to vlog brothers Han
More about Maureen Johnson...

Other Books in the Series

Shades of London (4 books)
  • The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1)
  • The Shadow Cabinet (Shades of London, #3)
  • Untitled (Shades of London, #4)
13 Little Blue Envelopes (Little Blue Envelope, #1) The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1) The Last Little Blue Envelope (Little Blue Envelope, #2) Suite Scarlett (Scarlett, #1) The Bermudez Triangle

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“There is no normal. I've never met a normal person. The concept is flawed. It implies that there is only one way people are supposed to be, and that can't possible be true. Human experience is far too varied.” 43 likes
“Do you ever sing in the car?"
"Generally not. But I am driving a police car."
"I think people would like a singing policeman. Makes life seem more like a musical. Like Foot-tastic."
"You can talk for a long time about nothing."
"I certainly can, you charming man!”
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