Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Book Review: The Dark Between

The Dark BetweenAuthor: Sonia Gensler
Publication Date: August 27, 2013
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

A supernatural romance about the powers that lie in the shadows of the mind, perfect for fans of Sarah Rees Brennan, Alyxandra Harvey, and Libba Bray.

At the turn of the twentieth century, Spiritualism and séances are all the rage—even in the scholarly town of Cambridge, England. While mediums dupe the grief-stricken, a group of local fringe scientists seeks to bridge the gap to the spirit world by investigating the dark corners of the human mind.

Each running from a shadowed past, Kate, Asher, and Elsie take refuge within the walls of Summerfield College. But their peace is soon shattered by the discovery of a dead body nearby. Is this the work of a flesh-and-blood villain, or is something otherworldly at play? This unlikely trio must illuminate what the scientists have not, and open a window to secrets taken to the grave—or risk joining the spirit world themselves. 

And she held them all under her spell.

“Believe me, I had matters in hand,” she said, pleased by his discomfort. “So don’t expect me to swoon at your gentlemanly interventions.”

She would become a little detective herself.

Spiritualism and séances. Never have I read a book focused around these two concepts, but let me just say that this book was gratifying enough to make me want more. Summerfield College is such a dramatic and fantastic setting to this eerie world that Sonia Gensler drops readers into, and the three characters that she has created to lead us through the book are just as engaging and come from painful, if not tragic, backgrounds. I was so caught up in this book that I didn’t even mind the spooky parts. I just wanted to know everyone’s secret and get to the bottom of the mystery!

I connected with each of these characters and I loved what each of them brought to the story. I, however, especially loved Kate who was a pitiful orphan girl recently put out by her employer and now homeless. Kate’s story was one of sorrow and grief, but Kate was such a headstrong character and literally let nothing or no one stop her from unraveling the answers she wanted. Readers learn early on that Kate’s father was somewhat prestigious and prominent man within society, but that her mother was not. Kate’s father was engaged to be married to a woman other than her mother when she was born. She learns that he died a few years ago, and that his death might not have been an honest one. This was such an intriguing concept, and I loved seeing it explored through Kate’s eyes.

Overall, this story is unlike anything I have read so far this year. I absolutely love it, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes stepping outside their comfort zone every once in a while. The characters are all very different, and they each have characteristics and mannerisms that is sure to make at least one of them your favorite. Sonia Gesler, I hope you are working on a sequel, or at least something equivalent to this book!

***A copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Knopf Books for Young Readers in exchange for my honest review***


  1. Ooh sounds creepy but good. I haven't heard of it so I appreciate the review. Thanks for following.

  2. Oooh nice!! This one sounded pretty good, as did the author's previous book which didn't have a connection to this one! But I love a good creepy mystery-esque type read! Great review!