Author: Sarah Ann Juckes
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Penguin Random House UK Children’s
Summary: from Amazon
Here’s the thing about being Inside. Ain’t no one believes that they are.
Ele has never been Outside, but she knows it exists – she just has to prove it.
Her whole world is Inside. Trapped with her books and the Others and Him.
She has never seen a tree or felt the rain but that’s about to change. Ele’s getting out. For good.
Outside was actually a really pleasant surprise for me. I hadn’t heard of it until I saw it on Netgalley and thought it looked intriguing. I can see it being likened to Room as it deals with a similar harrowing theme of being imprisoned. However I think Outside stands up really well entirely on it’s own merits.
Outside follows a young girl, Ele, on her quest to escape her captivity and get to the ‘outside’ world. The book is written in a way that takes some getting used to. The reader is thrown into Ele’s frightening world and it is not immediately clear exactly what parts of her experience are real and what parts she has invented to escape her trauma. Despite the unusual writing style, or perhaps because of it, I was totally sucked into this story. I actually read it all in one sitting which is not something I do often, but I had to find out exactly what was going to happen to this brave and compelling character. There are obviously some dark subjects in this book but the overwhelming feeling it left me with was one of hope. The characters in Outside demonstrate both the cruelty this world is capable of and also the inexorable strength of the human spirit.
I really don’t have anything bad to say about this book. It is an intelligently written story of survival that I hope many people read. Outside is not a long book but I was left thinking about it long after I finished reading.
I received an e-arc of this book from Netgalley. My review is my own honest opinion.