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Inspection

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3.46  ·  Rating details ·  1,589 ratings  ·  442 reviews
J is a student at a school deep in a forest far away from the rest of the world.

J is one of only twenty-six students, all of whom think of the school’s enigmatic founder as their father. J’s peers are the only family he has ever had. The students are being trained to be prodigies of art, science, and athletics, and their life at the school is all they know—and all they ar
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Kindle Edition, 387 pages
Published March 19th 2019 by Del Rey
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Emily
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Kaitlynn Some people get advanced copies from the publisher to review, so there are some reviews/hype before the book is available.

A lot of people, not…more
Some people get advanced copies from the publisher to review, so there are some reviews/hype before the book is available.

A lot of people, not knowing how reviewing works, like to leave 'reviews' for books they want to read that they haven't read, thus making the average rating for the book absolutely worthless. (less)

Community Reviews

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3.46  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,589 ratings  ·  442 reviews


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Chris
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Josh Malerman is best known for his disturbing, deeply original novel “Bird Box,” about a mother determined to save her two young children, even though it will mean rowing 20 miles down a river, blindfolded. The brilliant elevator pitch behind that book? When you see it, whatever it is, you will kill yourself on the spot: hence, the mother’s need for the blindfold. The novel became a frightening movie and then an even more terrifying cult phenomenon, as people began vying for Darwin Awards by do ...more
Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Right now is a great time to be Josh Malerman.
The success of the Netflix Original, BIRD BOX, based on his horror novel of the same title, is staggering. I'm not at all surprised. Great books make great movies. Everything that is excellent about the film, is due to the fact that Malerman's story is a sweet set up for a film adaptation. I *felt* that book in a very tangible way so it was so cool to see that translated to the screen by people in the industry that respected Malerman's work and honor
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Chelsea Humphrey
description

I think I'll be keeping this one brief, as I don't want to spoil anything and I am a middle of the road reviewer for this book. As others before me have stated, this one is a super slow burn, which isn't bad, but I think keeps the books from feeling as sinister as it could. I completely agree with Dennis's recommendation that fans of suspense that are a bit squeamish of straight up horror may really take to this story. The ending was epic, and 100 points to Malerman's Hogwarts House for all the
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Debra
Aug 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Best laid plans and all that......

What happens when good old D.A.D and M.O.M keep their "children" in the dark? That really is the question! J is one of the 26 Alphabet boys. They are being raised by D.A.D. and his "staff". The boys are smart, they are being raised to be prodigies. They only know each other, their school, their D.A.D. and the people who work at the school. They fear disease almost as much as they fear becoming spoiled rotten and being sent to the Corner. *shivers* J has always b
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Kaceey
Mar 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, buddy-read
Once again I find myself branching out into the dystopian world. How could I possibly resist the latest release from Josh Malerman. I absolutely loved his previous release of Bird Box.

While Bird Box rests comfortably on my favorite shelf, this one just fell a bit shy of reaching that status for me.
An ingenious premise that promised an explosive mind-blowing read. But I just couldn’t quite let go and be taken there. While I really liked it...I just can't say I loved it as much as Bird Box.

There
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Lisa
Apr 07, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My thanks to Random House Publishing and Ballantine books.
I have this love/hate/whatever relationship with Mr. Malerman. I love his story ideas. I love them so much that even when I know I shouldn't read his stuff, I still do. Except for Unbury Carol. Nope, the title makes me gasp for breath!
Inspection was weird for me. I really hated the first 70% of this book. That's not to say that I hated the story or the character's. I personally loved the kids in this book. The story was slow, and just wh
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Holly  B
 Original, Zany and Perplexing...

From the author of  Bird Box,  this novel completely threw me for a loop. A mesmerizing cover and a promising premise had me diving in with high expectations.

From the first chapters I was aware of something dark and secretive going on with this group of boys duped "the alphabet boys".  They are living in a tower at a remote location as part of an "experiment".  These boys are being raised to become the worlds best in science, engineering and math.

While I enjoye
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Carol
4 BIG-TIME STARS FOR ORIGINALITY!

Like so many, I love, love, loved BIRD BOX, (both novel and movie) enjoyed THE HOUSE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE LAKE and UNBURY CAROL, and now after reading INSPECTION, one thing I know for sure is....with Josh Malerman, you never know what you're going to get!

"They deserve the truth."

Malerman sets the stage by introducing the reader to a bizzare school of trusting young teens (with letters for names) living in a secluded world of strict laws and fear of disease. O

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Susanne  Strong
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: buddy-read, netgalley
3.75 Stars* (rounded up).

Well, that was different. In truth, I couldn’t tear my eyes away!


What can I say without giving too much away? “Inspection” is weird and wild and had a really interesting concept. The first part was a little slower for me and took a while to get into and then BAM!!, the second part took off and I was all in. The characterizations hooked me. K and B, got me and and they got me good. Reality is not what you think it is and truth well, what is the truth? Be honest and you ar
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Michelle
Mar 07, 2019 rated it did not like it
1-1.5 stars.

A husband and wife duo decide to live out a "thought experiment" where 26 boys and 26 girls are kept in separate towers in the Michigan wilderness. It is their hypothesis that if each sex is raised independently of each other and without knowledge that the other exists, the "genius" that will come as a byproduct of this upbringing will far outweigh the controversial nature in which this experiment was conducted.

Where to begin? I'm going to be quite blunt. This book was awful. I mean
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Jennifer


★★★
In my opinion, Josh Malerman has a very abstract way of storytelling, and with all abstract art forms, it is open to interpretation. Although Inspection is more of a straightforward story once you have all the information, there are still some interesting concepts that lay underneath.

Because the mystery component is dependent on the reader having zero information about the plot line, I must refrain from incorporating any sort of synopsis into this review. But the themes I took away from my r
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Zoeytron
Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review.

Experiments do not always come to fruition in the way that is expected.  This is a whole new twist on the concept of Parenthood.  The dreaded daily Inspections, checking for disease and rot.  If there is any sign of spoilage, the Corner awaits.  The Corner hums and croons and sometimes it rumbles.  What goes on behind that door? 

I applaud this author's fresh ideas, how he eschews the formulaic recipes and has yet to use a cookie-cutter.  I l
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Sylvain Neuvel
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Malerman gives a master class in mood-building with this deliciously creepy coming-of-age story. I don’t want to spoil anything because you need to savor every line, but I’d call it Dead Poets Society as directed by Tim Burton. Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Matt
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Josh Malerman returns with another of his novels that bends the mind while captivating the reader’s attention from the get-go. Full of intriguing twists alongside layers of social commentary, Malerman has created yet another book that will have people thinking, even without a Netflix adaptation. A group of twenty-four boys live in a tall building, isolated from anyone else. These boys, each given a letter rather than a name—two boys, A and Z, are no longer with the group—were plucked from the ja ...more
Char
INSPECTION is a wildly imaginative and thought-provoking tale!

What would happen if boys were raised without any knowledge of the opposite sex? That's the basic premise behind this book, (there's more to it, but I won't get spoiler-y.) Just think about that for a minute, think about what would be involved. How to explain where the boys came from, for instance? How to explain puberty and changes to the body? The answer to those questions and more is easy. You LIE. And what happens when those lies
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Mindi
Apr 12, 2019 rated it liked it
I sincerely do not know how to rate this. How do you rate a book that held you entranced, kept you turning pages because you had to KNOW what was ultimately going to happen, and yet you still found problematic to a degree? Also, I feel a rant coming on, because I've read a number of reviews for this one just now, and I have something to say.

Let's address that first. People and expectations. Here's the thing about Josh Malerman, the sensational new voice in horror fiction who penned the fantastic
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Kendall
Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it
This was my first book by Josh Malerman and was ecstatic to get this approval!

I have heard amazing things about Bird Box... and I'm pretty sure I'm about the only person in the world that hasn't read Bird Box yet haha ;).

What happens when parents keep their children away from everything? The alphabet boys are being raised by D.A.D. and his staff members. The boys are very smart and only know what is being "taught" to them at school. The boys fear diseases like no ones business! One of the boys
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Gabby
I am pretty disappointed with this one, not gonna lie. I absolutely loved Bird Box and A House at the Bottom of a Lake by this author, so I assumed I would love this one too. This story has a great concept - it’s about boys and girls living in separate towers who aren’t aware of the fact that the other gender even exists. I was really excited to read it.

I had a few problems with this book: the first thing being that it’s way too fucking long. This idea would have probably worked better for a sho
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Emily
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
After having more discussions with people after this book was released, I'm more frustrated by it than I already was, and I think my experience was closer to 2⭐ instead of 3⭐.

This is a difficult review to write since I have really mixed feelings on Inspection. I enjoyed some parts of it, and was quite annoyed by others.

Even if I don't always love the outcome, Josh Malerman always has creative concepts for his books. I was intrigued by the synopsis of this book, and a fair amount of the story was
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Carrie
Mar 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Ok, so I’m probably one of the few readers out there that actually has not yet read Bird Box. I’ve certainly wanted to after seeing tons and tons of readers that loved it and now going on to make it to the screen with a major actress like Sandra Bullock. So when seeing that Inspection by Josh Malerman was coming out I wanted to beat the masses and read the next hit first…well….not so much.

Inspection really feels more dystopian than horror which to me shouldn’t be a bad thing as I love a good dys
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Cody | codysbookshelf
Mar 20, 2019 rated it did not like it
I bought this thing for full price on release day. I should’ve known better, maybe, but after having a good time with Unbury Carol I thought it’d be safe. Nope. I was wrong.

(No I’m not reviewing this. I’m angry.)
J.D. Barker
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Engaging and suspenseful! Malerman creates a fiendish fairy tale of a world where boy was never meant to meet girl and the hell unleashed when they finally do.
Lisa Wolf
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: weird-fiction
Okay, wow, this book is weird. At first, I even thought it might be TOO weird for me, which is rather hard for a book to achieve. But eventually, I got sucked in by the weirdness and became completely hooked on the story.

So, deep in a remote forest, a group of 26 boys -- the Alphabet Boys -- have been raised from birth through age 12 in an all-male environment, never even knowing that females exist. It's all part of a grand experiment by the man they call D.A.D., attempting to prove that without
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Tammie
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of the most unique and original books I’ve ever read-a solid 5 stars. In Inspection, we learn that there are the Alphabet Boys-young boys being raised in a remote and controlled location. These boys know nothing of the outside world, including the knowledge of women. The basis of this “experiment” is so these boys become the world’s greatest thinkers (scientists, mathematicians, engineers and so on) without being subjected to the world’s daily distractions.
When I started this book, I went i
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Donna Backshall
Mar 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of dark, stark coming-of-age horror
Inspection is an original and unique coming of age story, so fresh and different from anything else I've read. It is a disturbing story about an experiment where children are raised in two separate oppressive and manipulative school environments, which segregate boys and girls to the extreme that they do not (and cannot) know the other sex even exists. We are introduced to the inner-workings of the stark boys' school through the odd and sort of distant views of various characters.

I found it fasc
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Bill
Well...I tried. I really did. Nothing about this one clicked for me and I gave up 25% in which is way more than I should have gave it since I knew right away that this wasn't going to be my bag. DNF.

Note: There was a time not so long ago that I would never DNF a book. I would slog on to the end and not enjoy it at all. Fuck that. Those days are gone. I don't have time for that anymore. This is my second Malerman DNF in a row and I just don't think this dude is for me.
Raeleen Lemay
Mar 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
I feel like this book could have (and should have) been either a short story or a novella. It has a really interesting concept, but not a big enough idea to fill up an entire book, so this felt like mostly filler. Also, it barely qualifies as a horror novel, as it was tame (and even boring) for about 98% of the book. If you want something like Bird Box, this is not that book. This book is far more slow, far less suspenseful, but definitely unique in its concept and execution. (view spoiler) ...more
Patricija - ReadOff
Mar 28, 2019 rated it did not like it
I'm so disappointed. I loved Bird Box so much, and this is nothing like that book. In fact, a complete opposite. Its long and sooooo slow paced. And not in a goof way where you at least got good developed characters. I read past approx. 50% (at the least, even more) and they still haven't met the other school, or anything interesting happened. There are too many books out there, waiting to be discovered so I'm not going to waste my time. I heard the ending is interesting and twisted, but man, it ...more
Mogsy (MMOGC)
1.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/04/11/...

While Inspection is only my second Josh Malerman, I’ve read enough and heard enough to know it is a crapshoot every time you pick up one of his books. With this author, you just never know what you’re going to get—an inevitable consequence of his creativity and unpredictable writing style. And unfortunately, this time I took a risk, but it didn’t pan out.

In a word, Inspection is strange. At the heart of this tale is a ma
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Jan
May 05, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: horror
DNF

I’ve had this book on loan from the library for 2 weeks now, and at page 110 I’m throwing in the towel.

I don’t know how this can be the same author that wrote Bird Box, a huge 5 star read for me. The writing style is completely different-almost sophomoric with its oversharing and hints at the obvious, most of it told through characters inner thoughts. This could and should have been edited down to a novella.

I was so looking forward this read, which makes the DNF even more painful.
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Josh Malerman is the author of BIRD BOX and the singer/songwriter for the band THE HIGH STRUNG.
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“Why now? Why realize this now? Was it the natural arc of an asshole? An inevitable day of retribution?” 0 likes
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