(Image from Barnes & Noble)
(Note: While this review will not contain spoilers for The Dead of the Night, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from its predecessor, Tomorrow, When the War Began. As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order.)
Australia has been taken over by an unknown enemy. The little town of Wirawee is under siege. Guarded by armed soldiers, Ellie Linton's family and friends are being held at gunpoint. She and a handful of her teenage friends have evaded capture so far, but two of their group are now in custody. They can't leave Kevin and Corrie in enemy hands. From what the teens can gather, no one is coming to save their country, let alone their village. If anyone's going to be rescued, it will be up to Ellie and her friends.
Spearheading a revolution is tough enough, but Ellie's also got to deal with increasingly tense group dynamics, her feelings toward two very different boys, and constant worry about the welfare of her parents and friends. If the kids are going to help anyone, they have to work together. But how can they fight back against a dangerous enemy? How much are they willing to risk in order to rescue their friends, free their families, and save their town? If they die in the attempt, who will be left to care about tiny Wirawee?
I enjoyed Tomorrow, When the War Began—the first installment in John Marsden's enjoyable dystopian series—so much that I bought all the subsequent, difficult-to-procure books. The Dead of the Night, the second volume, picks up where the first one ends. Like its predecessor, it's narrated by Ellie, who's tasked with writing about the teens' adventures for posterity. Her voice is conversational, which makes her story feel both intimate and authentic. She's a worthy heroine—tough, courageous, and self-deprecating. The novel is mostly action-driven, so there's plenty going on. Full of tension, adventure and excitement, the ongoing story is one that will appeal to both boys and girls. A worthy follow-up to Tomorrow, When the War Began, The Dead of the Night is an engaging, enjoyable read that kept me totally immersed throughout. If you enjoy fast-paced dystopian/survival stories, try this series—a definite oldie but goodie.
(Readalikes: Other books in the Tomorrow series, including Tomorrow, When the War Began; A Killing Frost; Darkness, Be My Friend; Burning for Revenge; The Night is For Hunting; and The Other Side of Dawn)
If this were a movie, it would be rated:
for language (no F-bombs), violence, blood/gore, and sexual content
To the FTC, with love: I bought a copy of The Dead of the Night from Amazon with a portion of the millions I make from my lucrative career as a book blogger. Ha ha.