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The Dark Between

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  486 Ratings  ·  95 Reviews
A supernatural romance about the powers that lie in the shadows of the mind, perfect for fans of Sarah Rees Brennan, Alyxandra Harvey, and Libba Bray.

At the turn of the twentieth century, Spiritualism and séances are all the rage—even in the scholarly town of Cambridge, England. While mediums dupe the grief-stricken, a group of local fringe scientists seeks to bridge the g
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2013)
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Had to wait to review this since a student grabbed it out of my hands as soon as I read it. She just finished and the two of us have promised to buy all the copies at our local bookstore IF Sonia Gensler starts working on the sequel. NOW! Yesterday!!

Kate, Asher, Elsie. No more different three young people, and yet here they are, at Summerfield College in Cambridge. Each has a connection to the popular world of Spiritualism, and each is trying to run from a painful past.

The atmosphere of Summerfi
Set in 1901 Cambridge, England, The Dark Between is a beautifully written and delightfully atmospheric Gothic murder mystery that follows the adventures of three extraordinary teenagers as they investigate the mysterious death of a friend.

Sonia Gensler's new book is a magnificent work of fiction. I loved every page of it. Revolving around spiritualism and seances - two subjects I find extremely fascinating - The Dark Between is quite eerie and dark, but also very fun to read. And the fabulous
Sep 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great story, poopy ending.

Sonia Gensler sure can write. This was really good YA. It didnt feel like YA at all. The writing was fantastic, the setting was really great and the perfect type of setting for a gothic novel. Books, papers, dusty college libraries and laboratories? Heck yes.

I sort of was disappointed in who died and who didnt, and who didnt end up with anyone. Like I said, poopy. :(

Ashley Brooke
Dec 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really can't tell you how surprised I was at The Dark Between. I picked it up on a whim and it held me captive from beginning to end! I really, really enjoyed reading this book. The writing was fluid, the characters were likable, but not cookie cutter and the historical setting was pretty fascinating! I especially enjoyed that the characters seemed to grow during the course of the novel.

I gave this 4 stars because for me, it's clearly a book that needs a sequel. The ending, without a sequel, s
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So amazing! This book has been such a thriller. Imagine Gothic romance, murder mystery, and Victorian characters and settings all piled into one book. This is the ultimate mystery for teens equipped with paranormal scene and dark relationships. One of the main things that hit me was that the problems weren't solved easily and the conflicts were deep and kept getting more complicated--the characters actually had to search for the answers to their questions and sometimes found information in dange ...more
Chelsea B.
Nov 02, 2015 rated it liked it
The premise of this book sounded so interesting. A gothic young adult mystery set in the past?! Ummm...YES, PLEASE.
I was even on board with the first half being all character development and no action.
But then it kind of just...continued to be character interactions and no action. Even when the plot of the mystery came together it just felt...incomplete, and anticlimactic. I almost wonder if a sequel is in the works.
I just wanted more from the characters we learned so much about, and more fro
Apr 20, 2015 rated it it was ok
Poorly written with a non-ending. Libba Bray did the creepy 19th century thing way better in her Great and Terrible Beauty series.
Chelsea Hagen
The author of this book writes beautifully. The story however dragged on and I found myself just wanting it to end. It needed a bit more interesting spikes to keep it interesting.
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
It starts strong, especially in the first chapter, but I quickly lost interest in the characters.
Ian Wood
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is the complete review as it appears at my blog dedicated to reading, writing (no 'rithmatic!), movies, & TV. Blog reviews often contain links which are not reproduced here, nor will updates or modifications to the blog review be replicated here. Graphic and children's reviews on the blog typically feature two or three images from the book's interior, which are not reproduced here.

Note that I don't really do stars. To me a book is either worth reading or it isn't. I can't rate it three-
Oct 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
One look at this cover and I knew it was going to be a creepy read. But knowing this was a supernatural romance, I was intrigued to see how the whole supernatural ghost thing would mix with a romance and couldn't wait to dig into this story.

It's 1901 in Cambridge, England and scientists are intrigued by the idea of the supernatural world. Seances and speaking to ghosts in the spirit world are mysterious mental powers these scientists are determined to master. Kate, Asher, and Elsie find themsel
Review: Well this was a depressing book. And I should have seen it coming with all the ways it was similar to Cat Winters's In the Shadow of Blackbirds. However, while Cat's book made my list of top 10 read in 2013, I'm not sure if The Dark Between was on the same level as In the Shadow of Blackbirds.

Characters: Out of the three main characters that are introduced in this novel (Asher, Elsie, and Kate), Kate was definitely my favorite. She was wild and adventurous, daring and independent. Elsie
Elise Edie
Nov 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: recent-reads
Sonia Gensler's engaging mystery takes place in Cambridge and concerns the adventures of three very different teenagers, thrown together unexpectedly in the midst of a turn-of-the-century paranormal research investigation. Each tries to uncover the truth behind a series of mysterious deaths, and all are led to members of the Metaphysical Society, a learned group of men dedicated to the scientific investigation of psychic phenomena.

Gensler creates a tight mystery and a whole host of attractive ch
Katrina Marie
Aug 15, 2013 rated it liked it
The Dark Between wasn’t what I was expecting. The cover gave me the creeps, and I thought going in I’d get a great gothic horror. Even though it wasn’t what I thought it was going to be, I enjoyed it.

We follow Kate, Elsie, and Asher through the streets of Cambridge. Kate is my favorite character. She doesn’t really care what others think of her. Her downfall is she’s not very trusting. She honestly has no reason to be, but I think it helps develop her into the strong young woman that she is. She
Suad Shamma
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, 2014
Okay, so I got a little excited with this book, but I just LOVE ghost stories! And good ones at that!

It is so rare that you find a proper ghost story that keeps you hooked all the way. The only other one I can think of right now is Maureen Johnson's Name of the Star (brilliant book, highly recommended, go buy it NOW!), but Sonia Gensler succeeded in writing a very successful ghost story - i.e. interesting and spooky all at the same time.

A good ghost story is one that has an interesting story lin
Dec 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-books, fantasy
I have to caveat this by saying I know the author. But even with that, I honestly loved this book. And I'm impressed with the leaps and bounds by which her writing has progressed.

The setting was really interesting. I really felt transported back to this era on England. And while I could tell she did a ton of research, it was woven into the story so delightfully that I was constantly surprised by interesting tidbits that were revealed by the narrative without it feeling in any way like a history
Jan 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
A compelling story of three teens in 19th Century Cambridge, England. From different backgrounds, they try to solve a paranormal mystery while navigating friendships, love interests, and parental troubles. Historical fiction, mystery, and spooky ghost story all skillfully all rolled into one!
Alicia Papp
Oct 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
A clever, very enjoyable mystery/thriller with interesting characters, a great setting and plenty of edge of your seat moments. Oh and ghosts!!! A good fun and eerie read.
Jan 10, 2013 marked it as to-read
Shelves: not-yet-released
Umm. Sarah Rees Brennan, Libba Bray, Alyxandra Harvey.
Yeah, consider me sold.
Joy (Cheery♡Reads)
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own, aug-2013
Omg, my heart is still pounding. It simply cannot end like this. This NEEDS and MUST have a sequel.
Doug Penny
Feb 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
The author creates a credible story combining the historically secretive British metaphysical society with stuffy university elite culture resulting in a great mystery for YA and adults to solve along with the trio of troubled teens. Ms. Gensler addresses the accepted view where the privileged few inflict abuse on the street urchins in the same manner as Dickens, and the story she weaves leaves the reader with much the same conflicting emotions. The main characters are complex and manipulative w ...more
Jasminka Tanner
Jun 01, 2017 rated it liked it
This book was quite compelling in the beginning, but then it seemed to drag on and I became more and more bored with it. The vocabulary was advanced and I had to look up many words but I liked the challenge.
Aug 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 Stars

I liked the middle of this book quite a bit. Though the beginning was rather slow and I'm not sure I could have been less happy with the ending.
Christianna Marks
You can read this and many other reviews on my YA book blog The White Unicorn!

I'll start out by saying that this book wasn't as scary as I had hoped. Yes, it definitely had it's moments of eerie, spookiness, which I enjoyed, but it never made my skin crawl. It was more of a mystery novel with horror elements than a horror novel with a mystery around the edges and once I got my head wrapped around that fact, I had a great time diving into this book!

I struggled a little bit with the 3 points of v
Sep 13, 2013 rated it liked it
In a time of spiritualism and séances, Kate survives by creating illusions for a particularly cunning Madam. Filling her nights with seeking information and painting herself as ghosts of loves ones past; as well as spending her days hidden among the living, for fear of being detected as a fraud.
Despite all her prudence, Kate’s worse fear happens when the truth is finally exposed, causing Kate to lose the only home she has ever known. Alone and destitute, Kate finds herself at the doors of the S
Chelsey Wolford
Jun 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Spiritualism and séances. Never have I read a book focused around these two concepts, but let me just say that this book was gratifying enough to make me want more. Summerfield College is such a dramatic and fantastic setting to this eerie world that Sonia Gensler drops readers into, and the three characters that she has created to lead us through the book are just as engaging and come from painful, if not tragic, backgrounds. I was so caught up in this book that I didn’t even mind the spooky pa ...more
When Kate Poole was twelve, her body had folded easily into the medium's throne.

Spiritualism and seances are all the rage in Britain around the turn of the twentieth century. Kate is a servant helping her mistress (a false medium) fool clients. When she is caught one night she escapes to Summerfield College and finds a home with the Thompsons and their niece, Elsie. Elsie has epileptic fits in which she sees frightening visions. Asher is visiting the Thompsons after a fight with his father ove
BAYA Librarian
Apr 05, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: supernatural, tween
Plucky, street-wise Kate is an orphan who has just lost her last hope of making an even vaguely respectable living. Frail, dreamy Elsie suffers from fits and can’t admit to anybody what she sees while she has them. Handsome, brooding Asher is just trying to get away from an American father he hates. They find their various ways to London’s Summerfield College, where all is not as it seems. There have been mysterious deaths, and the three very different young people are going to have to start tru ...more
Sep 17, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya-novels
See my full review here:

Kate Poole finds herself without a situation after the medium she worked for threw her out. Asher Beale has run from his family and finds himself at the doorstep of a family friend. Elsie Atherton has been drugged to control a condition that embarrasses her family. These three unlikely companions find themselves together at Summerfield College in the care of Mr. and Mrs. Thompson, members of The Metaphysical Society. Elsie can go i
Laura Bang
I really enjoyed the setting of this -- Cambridge, England in 1901. I loved all the details of the college town and the height of the spiritualism craze. The story is set primarily at the fictional Summerfield College (for women), where the lives of three young people intersect. Elsie, Asher, and Kate were all interesting to read about and I liked the change in perspectives between them, but Kate was my favorite. This is primarily a mystery, with a side of paranormal/supernatural elements, which ...more
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I am a former high school teacher turned full-time writer living in Oklahoma with my husband and my cat.

My books include THE REVENANT (Knopf 2011), a ghostly mystery set at a Cherokee girls' school, THE DARK BETWEEN (Knopf 2013) a Gothic murder mystery set in Cambridge, England, and GHOSTLIGHT (Knopf 2015) a contemporary MG mystery about a haunted house film project.

PLEASE NOTE: I'm not assignin
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