Book Review: The Dead of the Night by John Marsden

Book Review: The Dead of the Night by John Marsden

Pub. Date: 5th January 2012 (UK) 1994 (Aus)
Publisher: Quercus (UK)
Pages: 288
Series: Tomorrow (#2)
Readership: Young adult
Genres: Action/adventure, dystopia

The Dead of the Night is the second book in the Tomorrow series, so you might not want to continue reading this review if you’ve not read the first book.

Synopsis from Goodreads: Australia has been invaded. Nothing is as it was. Six teenagers are living out their nightmare in the sanctuary of a hidden valley called Hell. Alone, they make their own rules, protect what is theirs, and struggle for courage and hope in a world changed forever. Seeking supplies, allies, and information, the friends make forays into enemy territory, drawing on nerve and resourcefulness they never even knew they had. As the risks become greater, so too do the sacrifices they must make.

The Dead of the Night takes place not too long after the events at the end of the first book, Tomorrow When the War Began. It has been a couple of months since the invasion of Australia and the group of committed teenagers decide that they’ve had enough of sitting around waiting for something to happen and instead band together to change their dire situation.

The Dead of the Night contains many of the familiar elements we came across in the first book – action, adventure, survival, and a little romance, but I thought it was much more powerful in some ways as we have got to know each character. I think character development is always an exciting thing to read about because it enables the reader to really feel as if they are part of the story and watching as the characters grow and change. People can change, especially if they’ve gone through something as life-threatening and horrific as these teenagers have. In The Dead of the Night, every character does something they never thought they’d do, something that alters the way they see themselves, in particular Ellie and Fi – the two most contrasting characters. In this sequel, the group come across adults who have set up camp for themselves, much like the teenagers have in Hell. The way they are treated by this new group of people really highlights that we are reading about teenagers, teenagers who usually wouldn’t be experiencing the things they have been. It made the entire situation seem much more horrifying and I wondered whether it was true to life – in an invasion, would young people be seen as a help or a hindrance?

The Dead of the Night is as dramatic as ever and threw the group into warfare, with lots of bloodshed. We again see each character deal with the ethics and dilemmas of war, and see them wondering just how far they should go to protect themselves. I feel like we’re about to go on even more of adventure with Ellie and friends in the next book, The Third Day, The Frost.

Thank you Quercus for providing this book for review!

2 thoughts on “Book Review: The Dead of the Night by John Marsden

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