Cass - Words on Paper's Reviews > The Dead of Night

The Dead of Night by John Marsden
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's review
Dec 06, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: aussie, bought, sequels-series, read-2011, author-love, dystopian, own
Read from December 23 to 26, 2011


What John Marsden does really well is create an action-packed story that also has heaps of depth sprinkled in between. The character development is just phenomenal--you really get to know the gang inside and out, and their relationships are realistic and drawn out. In the second book of the series, they find out what happened to Corrie and Kevin; encounter a group of adult survivors; burn some more things; and cope with the effects of war. As they see their hometown being colonised, they will stop at nothing to ensure that they get Hell.

Once again, we have Ellie Linton as the narrator. She's got such a unique voice ~ she recounts what happens, what is said, how she feels about it all, and the implications of what goes on. She finds herself in a situation where she considers whether what she did, in hot blood, was right or not. I like how much attention Marsden has on the ethical sides of war.

Homer is the bomb-loving, brick-smashing, slightly sexist rockhead we can't help but love. He and Ellie have grown a bit awkward with each other since Ellie shared her recounts (the first book) with the group. He never fails in finding crazy ideas or keeping the group going.

Fi tries to be brave, having been removed from the hugely privileged life she had before the war. She is pretty much Ellie's confidante, and she grows pretty envious of what Ellie has--bravery, strength, a boyfriend.

Lee is changing--it's plain to see how far the war has affected him when you compare his behaviour in the first book. He becomes more strategic and logical and cold. Some of the things he said really freaked me out! I preferred Book 1 Lee ~ this Lee scares me.

Robyn remains as sturdy as an oak tree. I really like her character because she continues to stick to what she believes in.

Chris becomes strange. Ellie and the others maintain a distance from him, because he's become morose and just hard to tolerate. There's no denying that he's a genius.

Harvey's Heroes, the group of adults that the gang find off the creak from Hell, provided a different perspective on the war. And how adults behave and perceive things. The treatment Ellie and the others receive from them, especially from Major Harvey, just annoyed me. They all thought they knew what was the best course of action, they blindly followed a leader who does more talking than doing. . . . The women wear makeup and do all the house-work. Harvey's Heroes have congratulated themselves on their efforts--meager when compared to the achievements of the teenage gang of 8/6/5.

The ending was explosive--literally! Possibly even bigger than the Wirrawee Bridge explosion in the first book. There are only five left, when they discover that one of their friends has fallen in a less than heroic death.

If you're looking for a well-developed dystopian (but not far off in the future, a contemporary dystopian) that addresses heavy topics, but is also page-turning and full of action and suspense, do not hesitate to pick this series up! I'm crossing my fingers that THE DEAD OF THE NIGHT film does make it to the end of its development, and that it reaches a more international success. It is going to be amazing!
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Quotes Cass - Liked

John Marsden
“When you're scared you can either give in to the panic and let your mind fall apart, or you can take charge of your mind and think brave.”
John Marsden, The Dead of Night

John Marsden
“What's the Future? It's a blank sheet of paper, and we draw lines on it, but sometimes our hand is held, and the lines we draw aren't the lines we wanted.”
John Marsden, The Dead of Night

Reading Progress

12/23 page 11
4.0% "I figured it was about time I continued reading the series. When I finish this one, I'll buy the third book, and so on until I finish them all. Small January book haul? :)"
12/25 page 223
82.0% "So many close calls! The Harvey's Heroes thing got my blood boiling. :/ Once again, character depth and realism of emotions continue to run strongly. I like the whole black and white struggle going on ~ whether what they're doing is right or wrong. That young soldier encounter was harrowing and powerful."
02/05 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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Wendy Darling I'm starting this series soon! I've heard such great things.

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