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Inish Carraig

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  111 ratings  ·  44 reviews
Post-alien invasion Belfast and humanity's been defeated. Pity the locals aren't listening.

Set up to release a virus which kills the alien invaders of Belfast, John Dray is sent to Inish Carraig, a forbidding prison. There he uncovers the secret behind the virus - a conspiracy which threatens Earth and everyone he loves.

He has to unveil it. He just has to get out of pris
Paperback, 239 pages
Published August 21st 2015
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Average rating 4.13  · 
Rating details
 ·  111 ratings  ·  44 reviews

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May 23, 2018 rated it liked it
Actual rating: 3.5/5

The book hooked me with the title - what on Earth does it mean?

It turns out it's a prison. Scary and creepy one.

The story follows John Dray, a survivor of a brutal alien invasion. He lives in remains of Belfast and he's a regular teenager trying to survive and help his less resourceful siblings. He’s caught up in a conspiracy which threatens Earth and everyone he loves.

The story contains a strong mix of action, mystery, and politics. And did I mention a galactic war between
Jan 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The characters in Inish Carraig are some of the most three dimensional and believable people that I’ve encountered in a science fiction book in a long time.

These are real folk who make important choices as real people might. They have the doubts and fears and prejudices that I can recognise in myself, and my friends. Their decisions are brave or cowardly, right or wrong, sometimes noble, sometimes arbitrary in the same way as yours or mine might be. No-one is a saint or a demon, and each chara
Cathleen Townsend
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Four stars.

I have an interesting mix of emotions when I read Jo Zebedee’s work. It’s darker than I like, with far more emphasis on emotions I prefer not to dwell on. But it’s written so well that I end up getting sucked in anyway. And I’m not sorry I did.

Her characterization in particular is extremely well done. Her main character begins by doing something he knows to be wrong—all part of a struggle to survive—and you end up rooting for him anyway. His journey is grim, with a bewildering array o
T.I.M. James
Sep 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
There are some books that are filled with detail and make an in depth read; then there are others that are so light that they are hardly worth reading, and then there is a third kind, simple standalone stories that give you just what you need, are well written and turn out to be a page-turner.
Inish Carraig is one of those books. It gives you nothing more than you need and keeps you hooked from first to last page (no matter how slow a reader you might have become.)

The world has been invaded! And
T.O. Munro
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an inventive story of alien invasion that deals with the aftermath - the invasion has been lost and the world is caught in the feud between two alien species while a remote galactic council seeks to enforce rules of interactions with a human species belatedly admitted to be sentient. Sort of like the UN trying to preserve some semblance of decency in the Balkan war between rival Serbian and Croatian forces each seeking to extend their influence over one or other muslim enclave. In short ...more
Brian Turner
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is an exceptional novel. The pace is incredible, with hard-hitting characters, and a powerful plot. It’s also intelligent, and cleverly juxtaposes the sectarianism of Northern Ireland with that of two different alien races with interests on Planet Earth.

The story:

John is a fifteen-year old boy, struggling to help his younger brother and sisters survive in a bombed-out Belfast, which has been left under the control of dangerous criminal gangs...

Henry Carter is a police inspector - and a hate
Tom H
Feb 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I just finished reading this and thought it was fantastic. Characterisation was marvellous, I was rooting for the protagonist, John, from start to finish, and the grim setting of post apocalyptic Northern Ireland really shone through ... I almost felt the grittiness coming off the pages. I just wish it could have been a bit longer; before I knew it I'd reached the end ... everything was wrapped up well, but an extra 50 or so pages would have drawn out the conclusion somewhat and not left me want ...more
Feb 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Alien invasions are a common enough theme in sf, but Inish Carraig sets itself apart - the setting is in and around a post-invasion, devasted Belfast, the streets almost familiar to those of a certain age given the media coverage decades ago.

The characters are all, in their own ways, survivors in a world with new masters and rarely do they (or the reader) know who to trust or who will betray them in a fast plot that twists and turns each chapter.

An excellent read and one to keep on the bookshelf
Kerry Buchanan
Aug 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is the second of Jo Zebedee's books I have read. I loved the first (Abendau's Heir), but this is even better.

Set in post-invasion Belfast, the story revolves around two main characters and is refreshing change from all the Troubles-related fiction that we usually associate with Belfast. Two Alien species are eyeing Earth's resources hungrily, and humans are forced to make concessions in order to survive. No-on knows this better than Henry, a policeman and John, a teenage boy.

The stakes are
Oct 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Very clever, very original feeling book. The characters feel as real as can be and deal with their wide range of problems in a decidedly human way. The plot is satisfyingly murky and moves at neither too fast nor too slow until right at the end, which is possibly the only criticism to level at the book. One of the gems of indie publishing - highly recommended.
Valerie Christie
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
I bought the Kindle version of this to take on holiday in 2015, started reading it while on holiday a month later and didn't get beyond the first few chapters. It's not a genre I would usually read, so I thought it wasn't for me. I was really wrong about this. I started reading it again about a week ago, and I enjoyed it a lot more than I would have expected. I found it quite comforting to read because like a lot of other people I've been quite dismayed by current affairs recently and reading so ...more
Jan 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Fun and fast-paced with good charactization. It's not exactly about alien invasion - more what happens after the invasion, when the dust settled. The book is short but I thought it was very well-structured, with no lulls that sometime plague other SF books.
Kat Harvey
Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book so much. An alien invasion story using the Troubles-hardened denizens of Belfast as the heroes and villains - pure genius.

The characters are well crafted, the plot is executed beautifully, the story-telling brings a grim world filled with tragedy to life with obvious love for the ravaged backdrop that is Belfast and its environs.

I will be reading more by Jo Zebedee!
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I truly enjoyed Inish Carraig, the new novel by Jo Zebedee. Wow, is it an engaging read! The author has done a wonderfully moving, and credible job of depicting the gritty, brutal struggle for existence of the surviving citizens in a post-alien invasion Belfast. Ms. Zebedee is very strong on characterization (readers of her first book, Abendau’s Heir, will know this); the book is full of intriguing, richly defined characters--you’ll have any number of people to root for (and trust me, you will r ...more
Pam Baddeley
Feb 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This is a powerful post-Apocalyptic novel set in Belfast (Northern Ireland) in the aftermath of a devastating alien invasion, where the race in question failed to spot that humans were sentient and therefore carpet bombed most of the planet before they were told to stop by the Galactic Council. As the story opens, a young man, John, is trying to provide for the surviving members of his family by doing jobs for a dodgy criminal gang leader. He and his friend Taz release a powder into the wind fro ...more
Poli Dee
Sep 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I first read Inish Carraig in an earlier draft version. It was good then. Now, it's great. Neither YA nor adult-orientated, but a cross-over, capable of appealing to all ages.

John Dray is in an impossible position: looking after his younger brother and sisters, keeping them alive, at an age when he should be thinking about school exams or if the redhead at the next desk fancies him. Aliens have devastated the Earth. Life on the streets is harder than ever, and a teenager whose siblings are depen
Steven Poore
In post-Invasion Belfast, young John Dray can starve on his own or be a runner for the gangs that haunt the rubble. It's not much of a choice, especially with younger siblings to feed. Avoiding army patrols and the occupying alien Zelo is no game. But when John and his friend Taz are given a small box and told to tip the contents into the air atop a hill on the edge of Belfast, the whole nature of the Invasion is turned on its head...

If you remember the mid-80s alien invasion TV epic V, you migh
Juliana Mills
Sep 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'd already read Abendau's Heir, the first in Jo Zebedee's space opera trilogy, so I was all shades of excited when I heard she was publishing a SF tale set in Belfast. Abendau was an exciting yet dark space adventure, and I knew I could count on Jo to deliver yet another darkly satisfying story.

Inish Carraig is a post-alien-invasion thriller set in present day Northern Ireland. When Belfast teenager John Dray inadvertently helps release a compound that wipes out the alien invaders, he ends up i
Nov 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
First I would like to thank the author and goodreads for allowing me the opportunity to read this book, and I apologize that I took so long to complete it. I haven't recently read a lot of science fiction recently because the majority of them seem to be the same with a different sort of alien. The storyline of this novel was well written and complex if not a little dark. The characters were well developed and reminded me once again of the importance o f family and friendships and the extremes we ...more
Sep 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I just finished Inish Carraig, I really enjoyed it. First impressions: I was drawn in the story from the first chapter. I loved the fact that I knew a lot of the places, we love going up Cave Hill, it gave me a sense of familiarity with the main characters, I wanted to know their story!
I loved the thorough description of the aliens, mostly the Barath'na’s, just a thought but I feel the novel would lend itself to a great graphic novel!
Ellie Rose McKee
Jan 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great wee novel to come out of Northern Ireland. Character driven, but not at all lacking in plot. Full of suspense as the story builds. Took me a little while to get used to the narrator, but he got really into it and was great at bringing something different to each voice. You never got confused about who was saying which bit.
Tim Taylor
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Superb science fiction drama set in and around Belfast after an alien invasion. Tension, action, believable characters, and you don't know how it's going to end until the last page. Jo Zebedee is an accomplished author. Definitely one to watch
May 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Jo Zebedee's Inish Carraig is a suspenseful SF set in Belfast, post-alien invasion.

Overall an enjoyable, free-flowing story with likable characters and some interesting aliens. Probably a bit formulaic in it's plot but still a fun read.
Thomas Watson
Aug 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
A very entertaining and quite different take on the alien invasion theme, set in and around Belfast. The characters were well-developed and the plot moved along at a good pace. The author has other books out there that I'll be checking out in the near future.
Jeff Bryant
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Terrific tale about a post invasion Earth and a resistance movement that is not all it appears to be. Sci fi with a decidedly low tech approach to the storytelling( very little doodads and weapons, well done)Jo Zebedee weaves a tale that had me caught from the beginning. Great read
Jeffrey Morris
Oct 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Pacy, dark and deeply textured account of an alien occupation. The characters are well fleshed out. It rips along so fast it will skin you. This is a good read.
Anya Kimlin
Nov 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic tale set in Northern Ireland. It brought to life characters and places and will have me disappointed to learn there aren't aliens hanging out in Belfast....
Nov 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Enjoyed this. Liked the Northern Irish setting and wee references. Good story.
Nick Bailey
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: scifi
Unconventional, post alien invasion story, a quick, good read.
J.L. Dobias
May 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: shelf-001
Inish Carraig by Jo Zebedee

There are so many things that are good, about this novel, that it's difficult to say which one might have pushed it over the top and onto my pile of best novels for the year 2015. I've read the author’s first novel, Abendau's Heir, and I would recommend that when you finish this novel you should check it out if you haven't already read it. Abendau's Heir showcases the authors style of writing which might be described as fifty shades of dark. She likes to start things o
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