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Dancing Jax

(Dancing Jax #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  1,025 ratings  ·  146 reviews
A brilliant supernatural thriller with a modern twist, and a triumphant return from one of Britain’s best-loved writers.

At the end of a track, on the outskirts of an ordinary coastal town, lies a dilapidated house. Once, a group of amateur ghost hunters spent the night there. Two of them don’t like to speak about the experience. The third can’t speak about it. He went into
Hardcover, 535 pages
Published February 3rd 2011 by HarperCollins UK (first published January 1st 2011)
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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  1,025 ratings  ·  146 reviews

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Karlyflower *The Vampire Ninja, Luminescent Monster & Wendigo Nerd Goddess of Canada (according to The Hulk)*

J, is NOT for Jarvis.

NONE OF THE STARS! Translated to: 1 Star

As a reader I don't like loathing books. Go check out my books-i-loathed shelf; its pretty sparse. There's a reason for that, and its this: even if I, personally, don't enjoy a book I can usually see some merit in it. I ACTIVELY HATED Dancing Jax! With every fiber of my being,hated it! And that annoys me!

No #1: Real world vs. Fictional world. A writer should NEVER compare real world big bads to fictional world big bads, EVER! By c
Feb 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror, fantasy
If Stephen King were to write a book for young adults then I would imagine it would be something very much like Dancing Jax. Although Robin Jarvis suggests that he doesn't see himself as a horror author, this book is as chilling as anything the great King has published. Reading it certainly made me feel the same as I did when I first read 'Salem's Lot, which was very nervous indeed. I don't scare easily these days, and I totally love horror films, but both of these stories had me feeling on edge ...more
Sep 18, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Die deutsche Rezension findet ihr hier.

Words are powerful and some books are so dangerous they should never be read. The Dancing Jacks’ is such a book, but so far nobody knows that. When it is put into circulation few are interested and nobody realizes how much it changes its readers: they start to manically rock back and forth while reading, express themselves in an odd way and act illogically, but those are only the most prominent symptoms. People start to believe th
Megan Pratt
Jan 19, 2012 rated it it was ok
This book was so horrendously mediocre that it would be better if it were ridiculously bad. The whole book is cliche and predictable, and as a teen I am offended that this is considered "teen lit." Yeah, right.
The book was weak, the characters were flimsy, and it jumped around so much. The inserts about unicorns and werewolves and shepherds and whatnot were so incredibly drawn on that I needed to take a break between inserts.
I do NOT recommend this book for anyone with a high intelligence. If
May 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Fans of Robin Jarvis's books about people
I tried really hard to like this book. Really hard. Like an underperforming child or the cat that pees on the carpet, I made a LOT of excuses for it. Robin Jarvis was one of my all-time favourite authors as a child. I devoured the Deptford Mice and Deptford Histories and felt genuinely bereft when they were finished and there wasn’t more to come. The man can definitely spin a yarn. I have a sneaking suspicion that his novel, Thomas may have in small way changed my life as a child. And discoverin ...more
Nov 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Somewhere between 3 and 4 stars maybe. I found it hard to get into at first because many of the characters were not very likeable, and the likeable ones were not around very long, but by the end it was hard to put down and I am anxious to read book 2 (though that might be due to the less than satisfying ending of this one).
Jess ❈Harbinger of Blood-Soaked Rainbows❈
So I want these books. All in hardback. Simply because I want to frame the beautiful dust jackets and hang them in my room as art. This cover artist is totally bril.

Why, yes. Yes I am.
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
This got better as it went on and I really appreciated what it was trying to do, but the writing style really wasn't for me. I read the first 100 or so pages of this book a month ago and DNFed it then, I decided to give it another chance and I enjoyed it more than I expected, but it did take me ages to read and the ending wasn't at all satisfying. I don't plan on continuing the series.

This book was a spooky, thriller type novel with some cool fantasy aspects. I am really intrigued by b
Nov 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
really entertaining. the storyline makes you think you are going to become one of them.
Jesse Owen
Feb 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: for-review
Dancing Jax starts with the discovery of an old children’s book which has been hidden away in a kind of haunted house which hasn’t been lived in or touched in years. And that’s quite frankly where it should have stayed. You see the book is not just any book and in the words of some of the characters it’s not even that good a book. But it has captured the hearts and minds of many people in a way that can not be healthy.

It’s a dark story and the house that houses the book matches the tone of the b
Ok. Ok. I’ll admit- the only reason I bought this book was because of the cover. It is a beautiful cover with a tattoo like picture on the front, with curls of gold spiralling off out of it. It also has a matt-shiny finish on it, with patterns of Clubs, Hearts, Diamonds and Spades. The inside is as beautiful as well. There is a Spade or a Club where the page number is located. Each chapter has either an excerpt from ‘Dancing Jacks’ or a picture. So that was the reason I picked this book up. I ba ...more
Lynne weir
When I started reading this story I did it with confidence thinking there was no way it would scare me. It was in the teenage section and with a book nothing can jump out and scare you and theres no high tension music to set you on edge. How wrong I was. It was exciting, easy to read and most important it was creepy and at parts I hold my hands up and say scary. I couldn't help but feel a little bit of a shiver on the bit about the house at the beginning and the ending...well it was amasing and ...more
Feb 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-books
I loved the story of this book. The mythology was superb, as was the writing. The zombie-like card-captives, their mindset and one boy's struggle to escape it, really captivated me. Add to that the short stories that was depicted in the book - the court jester's tricks, the Jack of Diamonds' knavery and the story of the horse.

But amidst it all was the lurking presence of the vile magician and the evil that was the book, slowly ensnaring and captivating its readers...but with a twist ;)

Needless t
Feb 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Amazing book. Loved the way the story moves between the different characters and gradually gets darker and darker. By the end of the book still the story has hardly even begun and apparently the sequel is due for Feb 2012 :O All the characters are amazing in their own way and basically can't wait for more :D
Nov 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
For the first 100 pages of this book I was confused and bored. Admittedly I was young and was simply needing a pastime. But when I finally realised what was going on I was at the edge of my seat.
This book about a book is twisted and fucking brilliant as a result. I tore through the rest of the book and bought the second.
Fiona Mcdonald
Aug 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I did enjoy this book and the next one in the series as well. It was horrifying and I had the most deliciously terrifying dreams each night after reading it.
My only criticism is the long wait for the third book to come out. Too, too long. Mr Jarvis please write something even more malevolent next time, and quicker too please.
Mar 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book - it's fairly easy to read but is a little bit dark, a bit cultish, and a bit creepy. I'm looking forward to the sequel coming out soon.
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I loved this book. Although it took a while to get into, once the story started going, I couldn't put it down. Can't wait for the next one.
Sep 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a SPECTACULAR book that has a mix of all my favourite genres! Crime, Horror, Mystery and loads of SUSPENCE it kept me on the edge of my seat!! (should be a film:)
Jul 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
i really liked the idea of the book, although the beginning of the book is really confusing without any explanation what is going on
Leah Hosie
Dec 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Why isn’t Robin Jarvis better known?!
He grabbed me when I was 11 years old, with a book about an Alchemyst and a Cat and over twenty years later, I’m still devouring his books with utter glee! I’m not sure whether he appeals to me specifically or if he is just hugely underrated. Dancing Jax proves that Jarvis is able to trouble his readers whatever the decade.

The good: Despite being a children’s author, he does not shy away from difficult topics and he never patronises his readers. Parts of th
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
First off, these books have beautiful covers! It's what drew me into them. It's definitely an original and unique idea, so I loved the concept of it. However, I'm just not sure I liked the execution of the idea. At least with this first book. It was very, very slow, so you have to really push yourself to read it further and see where the story goes. I actually ended up skimming the end because I was just waiting for the book to get to it's point! It's a dark fantasy, which I normally love. Like ...more
I Read, Therefore I Blog
Jan 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Robin Jarvis’s dark fantasy novel for children aged 11+ (the first in a trilogy) is a weird, sinister affair that bucks many of the conventions in children’s literature (including by having a largely adult cast) and takes a jaundiced view of modern life and the attitude of teenagers. However the way Jarvis intermingles backstory with the plot works really well and the body swapping is really disturbing such that I want to check out the sequel.

Review copy from publisher.
Tanya Turner
Feb 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: never-again
This is a tricky one to review. This book disturbed me on a visceral level, so much so that I charity shopped it after finishing it, I couldn't keep it in the house. I read it a few years ago and can't at this point even pinpoint what it is that upset me so much. The story is bleak, disturbing and feels hopeless, from beginning to end things just get worse for the characters. I cannot recommend this book.

But the very fact that I had such a strong reaction suggests it is a well written, powerful
Sep 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
No spoilers- it's a tale that sucks you in and wont let you go!
May 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Probably my favourite trilogy. Fantastic plot, really draws you in.
May 25, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya
not a single thing did i like about this book.
Sep 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
It is such a good read, a real page flipper.
Briar Neilsen
Apr 19, 2019 rated it did not like it
If I could give this less than 1 star i would.
It took me FOREVER to read. I read it about a year and a half ago and to this day I still have strong feelings about how much I dislike this book
Adrian Bloxham
Apr 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Great fantasy and you know there's more to come
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Robin Jarvis (born May 8, 1963) is a British children's novelist, who writes fantasy novels, often about anthropomorphic rodents and small mammals – especially mice – and Tudor times. A lot of his works are based in London, in and around Deptford and Greenwich where he used to live, or in Whitby.

His first novel – The Dark Portal, featuring the popular Deptford Mice – was the runner up for the Smar

Other books in the series

Dancing Jax (3 books)
  • Freax and Rejex (Dancing Jax #2)
  • Fighting Pax (Dancing Jax #3)

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