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3.87  ·  Rating details ·  508 ratings  ·  193 reviews
The Proof of the Outside follows the story of Ele, who is held captive in a small room by a man known as ‘Him’. Ele is determined to prove there is a world Outside. And when she finds a hole in the wall, the proof starts leaking in. In this dark and compelling debut novel, Ele's strong and heartbreakingly optimistic voice shines through, revealing an important lesson about ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published January 3rd 2019 by Penguin Random House Children's UK
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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  508 ratings  ·  193 reviews

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C.G. Drews
This was one of those odd and harrowing sort of books. I have messy feelings about this one. And it is DARK. It's basically about abused feral kids locked away in a room with zero knowledge of the Outside. I've seen news stories of this so it was interesting to read a fictional version. It's terrifying and seeing this kids raised on fear and left in filth. The style is a bit different too, with Ele having such limited language she makes up a lot of terms for things and basicall ...more
Julie Parks
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya, thriller
This was such an authentic read. I can only hope this wasn't based on any real experiences.

The story feels so real and heartfelt. Even the language is very subject appropriate. Sarah Ann Juckes' prose is so lyrical and addictive.

And because of the main narrator Ele's imagination, the story reads almost more like a sci-fi than horror.

It is more of a character development rather than an action plot, though. So don't expect the usual Hollywood chase down the road at the end.

Thank you NetGalley fo
Schizanthus Nerd
This is a story where the less you know before you read it the better so while I’d usually provide content warnings before my review they’ll be at the end of this one, so it’s up to you if you want to read them or not.

Ele lives Inside a Tower with the Others and collects Proofs of the Outside. She dreams of being an Outside Person instead of an Other but knows there are Dragons, Giants and Ogres Outside. Inside is anything but a fairytale because of Him but Inside is all she knows.

Ele is one of
Mar 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Outside was such a great book! It definitely reminded me of some other books that I read last year (or so), like Room. Haven't seen the movie yet but if it's like the book, then I'm sure I will love it.

In this, you will meet Ele. Now she was an interesting character to meet. She was different and unique.. but giving her circumstance - it's something that one would expect as well. Again, she was intriguing and definitely hel
Jan 04, 2019 rated it liked it
uckes's debut novel, is a young adult story of inspiration and thriving despite adversity, and although these type of books usually very much appeal to me this was tough to get through, so tough that I almost gave up on more than one occasion. Ele's narrative was quite confusing and difficult to absorb, but I do understand the authors desire to create something original. Sometimes it works, others it doesn't - this wasn't quite executed well enough for me. It also starts very slowly and descript ...more
Anna 'Bookbuyer'
First I would like to thank Netgalley for the opportunity to review this book and also to apologize for it being late.

Now on to the review.

This book ultimately was a three star for me. I found some issues with the formatting which was probably because it was an ARC. Also, it was a bit confusing.

I like Ele. I found her story inspiring and sad. It took me a really long time to figure out who the others were. I won't explain who they are as I'm trying for spoiler free but it's ultimately sad and a
Alice (MTB/Alice Tied The Bookish Knot)
DNF @ page 102

This is a debut UKYA novel that I was feeling very excited for... but sadly didn't work for me. It was a creepy premise and very Rapunzel reminiscent about a young girl locked away inside and never being allowed out, nor the other children. The writing style just didn't click and I was overall, left feeling very confused!
Outside is a captivating debut novel from UKYA author Sarah Ann Juckes. It is fast-paced, full of layered and wonderful characters and comes together in a shocking and emotional finale.

It’s hard to review this story without spoilers, so I’ll be keeping it fairly brief. This is the kind of book where the less you know, the better the reading experience.

Outside tells the story of Ele and the Others. From the outset we know there is something different about Ele. The way she describes the world aro
Evie Braithwaite
Nov 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Outside follows the story of Ele, who is held captive in a small room by a man known as ‘Him’. Ele is determined to prove there is a world Outside. And when she finds a hole in the wall, the proof starts leaking in.

I had mixed feelings about this novel for the first few chapters. The language was difficult to navigate and I didn’t know what I’d let myself in for. However, I stuck with it and was soon swept up in Ele's mission and her distinctive childish vernacular.

It's down to the perspective
Adele Shea
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an absolute gem of a book this is!

A modern day fairytale of escaping the evil witch. Except the evil witch is a male captor who has no intentions of letting his prisoners go. That is until the day Ele finally finds the courage to escape, run and never look back.

Loved this book so much I read it within a couple of hours. Thank you Sarah Ann Juckes.
Sarah Juckes
Mar 29, 2018 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Hi everyone! I'm so excited for you all to meet Ele in January 2019.

Ele is held captive in a small room by a man known as ‘Him’. She is determined to prove there is a world Outside, and when she finds a hole in the wall, the proof starts leaking in.

She has a weird, striking voice. Although she's trapped Inside, she has the kind of resilience and tenacity that I hope I'd have if ever faced with real danger. Ele's experience of the world is coloured by the fairytale books she has Inside with her.
Dec 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Blog Post:


*I was provided with an ARC of this book through NetGalley, in exchange for my honest opinion. All quotes used may be subject to change upon publication.

The synopsis for Outside greatly intrigued me as it reminded me of the book Room by Emma Donoghue, which I read and quite enjoyed. As well as the protagonist being held captive, like in Room, Outside is also told in a very unique point of view,
Julie (Bookish.Intoxication)
I won this book in a Giveaway from Penguin Random House and from the author, thank you so much!

I found this book to be something so completely different from what I have read before. I struggled with the language style, the cadence of it also, but the writing style was fantastic, keeping me on track and keeping the pages turning. I also loved the shorter chapters. They were just long enough to give you what you wanted, but short enough to not overwhelm you.

Being overwhelmed happens easily withi
thewoollygeek (tea, cake, crochet & books)
The first thing I'll say is there are going to be obvious comparisons here with Emma Donoghoe's Room and that is simply because it's a similar subject matter and not many books are written like this. Ele is held captive and it is through her eyes we see the world, 'inside' is quite confusing at times but that is because it is told through Ele are we are meant to be confused as she is. There is child abuse, neglect and violence, it is never graphic or overtly mentioned, but the images the author ...more
Jun 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I‘m smashed to tiny little pieces
Kate (Reading Through Infinity)
3.5 stars

TWs for mentions of physical assault and sexual abuse, captivity, emotional abuse.

This novel is about a young girl, Ele, who has lived most of her life inside, but finally gets to experience the outside. The story is told through first person, and I was struck by how strong Ele's narrative voice was. We experience everything she experiences through her vivid descriptions of the world around her. At times, her views and descriptions are childish, but having grown up with no parents or sc
“Truths are like people, see. They don’t like being shut up tight. They shrivel slowly, and they rot with lies, creating something mighty ugly.”

Wow! What can I say about this book?! Like Emma Donoghue’s Room it is both disturbing and redeeming at the same time. Ele’s language and immature outlook on life gives us an indication on her age, but also demonstrates just how long she has been held captive. It makes for difficult reading at the beginning, but I got the hang of it after a few chapters.
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very difficult book to read, but amazingly done. Heartfelt, real and it makes you think. What more do you need? Can I sit in a corner and cry now? Howly crap this was harrowing.
Dannielle Potts
Nov 04, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Thank You Netgalley & Publishers For Granting My Request To Review This Book: If You’ve Enjoyed “Room”, This Is The Book For You!

Having Read “Room” Myself, Once I Was A Few Pages In, I Fell Into A Rythym With The Language Which Is Similar. The Descriptive Language Fits Perfectly With The Image The Author Portrays Of The “Girl In The Tower”.

Although This Is A YA Novel, It Deals With Issues Very Relevant To All Age Groups, Predominantly Mental Health And Is A Great Medium To Raise Awareness.

I Fo
Elaine Mullane || At Home in Books
Outside, the debut novel from author and Content Creator, Sarah Ann Juckes, is the story of Ele, a teenage girl who has been kidnapped and held captive in a single room by Him. Already being touted as the YA version of Emma Donoghue's Room, this book is a harrowing look at life in bleak and filthy captivity for a young girl who understands there is more to her tiny reality.

The comparisons are justified: Outside has a similar story and plot, and the play on language is familiar (capitalisation of
May 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: contemporary
If there ain’t no Prince running in and slaying the Witch, then that means this Princess has got to do her own damn dirty work herself.

This was a good read overall but there were some things I had an issue with. The writing style itself is quite hard to get used to, it’s quite broken and disjointed and as it’s set in Scotland it uses a lot of area specific terms and slang that take a little adjusting to.

I really liked the first half of the book where Ele is held “Inside”. It’s a very brutal a
Christine -  LifeWithAllTheBooks
Outside was actually a really pleasant surprise for me. I hadn’t heard of it until I saw it on Netgalley and thought it looked intriguing. I can see it being likened to Room as it deals with a similar harrowing theme of being imprisoned. However I think Outside stands up really well entirely on it’s own merits.

Outside follows a young girl, Ele, on her quest to escape her captivity and get to the ‘outside’ world. The book is written in a way that takes some getting used to. The reader is thrown i
Jemima Pett
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The blurb intrigued me, and the book continues the intrigue.  The reader is continually trying to work out what is going on, who the other people are, where Ele is.  Eventually her location came as a surprise to me.  Then the type of establishment sent changing ideas through my brain.  The answer was very different from the thoughts I'd had.

The book is a conundrum, wrapped in a riddle.  The outcome is an enigma in many ways.  The power of the author's voice keeps you turning the pages, full of h
Jan 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-for-review
After finishing this book I’m still not really sure how to describe the feeling of reading Outside, other than saying you just have to read it for yourself. This debut novel went by so quickly because it was a shorter book and I was also immersed in the plot instantly so it didn’t take long to step into her shoes. In this book the main character, Ele, is a young teenage girl that has always been inside. Having lived in a small, locked room for as long as she can remember she still knows there is ...more
Mar 10, 2019 rated it liked it
This book was something else! I read this in basically two sittings, the pages just flew by! I don't think I've read anything like this before, and the simplicity mixed with the shocking things that were uncovered just grabbed me. I'll definitely be keeping up to date with Juckes' books in the future.
I love the way things were described in this book, as Ele doesn't know what the names for things are, so she describes them in her own way. It took a little bit of getting used to, trying to picture
Gayle Noble
Ele and the Others have been trapped inside by Him for as long as she can remember. Ele knows there is a world Outside, but can she ever get there?

This book was a quick read for me. I found that after a very slow start, the story began to pick up about a third of the way in, and by then I definitely wanted to know what had happened to Ele. The language used took a little getting used to, but it was understandable when you consider Ele and the Others had no other frames of reference apart from so
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a difficult book to read- at least to start with. It took a long while to get into the style of writing & the strange story. However before long I realised that this was a book where I really wanted to find out what it was all about.

I have never read 'Room' but from reviews I gather the premise is similar so I did not have any preconceived expectations. Normally I give a short precis of the plot but with this one I suggest you read it for yourself. I'm glad I did as it will be a while b
Jan 06, 2019 rated it liked it
First book of 2019! This was an intense read with very mature content but i’m glad it didnt go into too much detail. It was very hard to wrap my head around the talking style and it did kind of just throw you in with no context so it took me a little while to work out the situation. Once I was into it though it was a great read. This book was actually a free gift with a dymocks purchase in their sale period so it was a nice surprise!
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: booktails
Ele believes in the Outside even if none of the Others do. She's been in the Tower forever and the only thing she sees from the Outside is Him, but she knows it's there and she is determined to find a way out.
Hints of the shocking truth keep coming through and I found myself constantly revising my ideas of what was happening and who the others were. Even after finishing the book I couldn't stop thinking about it.
Sara Oxton
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Outside by Sarah Ann Juckes a five-star read that will give you thought. This is one of those reads that you won’t be able to put down, it will compel you to read until the last page. I don’t know what to say without giving the plot or a twist away. its one I don’t want to spoil for any reader, I know it’s a YA genre but I really hope that it gets read by more than just that genre as it had a great cross over, once you get used to the language and the phrasing used you will get sucked in and sta ...more
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My debut novel, 'Outside', was published by Penguin in January 2019.

In the past, I've worked for small publishers and public libraries, but now you can find me creating content for Jericho Writers, by day (and writing by night). I'm also a proud volunteer for the NSPCC and Board member at Creative Future.

I collect old editions of J. M. Barrie's 'Peter Pan and Wendy'; take too many pictures of my

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“But this ain't Rapunzel's story, is it? This is mine. And if there ain't no Prince running in and slaying the Witch, then that means this Princess has got to do her own damn dirty work herself.” 1 likes
“How to be an Outside person - number twelve: Read all the books.” 1 likes
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