Review: Asylum by Madeleine Roux

Asylum Genre: YA Horror
Published: August 20, 2013 by Harper Collins
Length: 320 pages
Source: Harper Collins (ARC)

For sixteen-year-old Dan Crawford, New Hampshire College Prep is more than a summer program—it’s a lifeline. An outcast at his high school, Dan is excited to finally make some friends in his last summer before college. But when he arrives at the program, Dan learns that his dorm for the summer used to be a sanatorium, more commonly known as an asylum. And not just any asylum—a last resort for the criminally insane.

As Dan and his new friends, Abby and Jordan, explore the hidden recesses of their creepy summer home, they soon discover it’s no coincidence that the three of them ended up here. Because the asylum holds the key to a terrifying past. And there are some secrets that refuse to stay buried.”


This book is fantastic; I was hooked on from start to finish! I had the chills and goose bumps while reading Asylum by Madeleine Roux. The author did a great job in scaring me, as a reader. There are some pictures in here, and they are very creepy! This book is told from Dan’s perspective. Dan is a sixteen year old who is staying at a college prep in New Hampshire, but he finds out that the dorm that he is staying in used to be an asylum.

The writing style is really good. The story flowed smoothly and was not choppy. The only thing I kind of did not like are the characters (Dan, Abby and Jordan). They have weird mood swings, and I don’t know why their mood would switch all of a sudden. One day they’re all happy like they won one year pass to Disneyland, and then the next day they’re grumpy like someone just threw their MacBook air out the window. I just didn’t understand why they were acting that way. Are they possessed? Are they homesick? It didn’t really specify. I do like the decisions that they made. If I were on their shoes, I would have done the same thing (except for some of Dan’s decisions). Dan is one of those characters in a scary movie where you’ll just be like “DON’T OPEN THE DOOR! DON’T! ….*Dan opens it* I TOLD YOU NOT TO OPEN THE DOOR!” type of guy.

There wasn’t that much romance in the book which made me very happy. The story is focused on how Dan solves the mystery because something paranormal is happening in their dorm. Also, there weren’t any scenes of Dan attending his classes; the scenes were almost always at the cafeteria, the school hallway, or at his dorm. That sort of bothered me because it would have been more believable if Dan actually attended his classes (LOL). Overall this is a book I wouldn’t pass on. It literally left me at the edge of my seat, and sometimes I just had to stop reading because it was getting scary! It would be a perfect read for October if you’re planning on reading it ;). I just love it and I think the author delivered the story well.

4 of 5

26 Responses to “Review: Asylum by Madeleine Roux”

  1. 1 Kaitlin Snider August 31, 2013 at 6:56 PM

    I’m so glad to hear this one is good and scary! There’s plenty of horror movies out there, but there needs to be more YA horror novels. Maybe I’ll pick this book up and read it on October to celebrate Halloween. 🙂

    Nice review! I really like the “Don’t open the door!” bit. 😀

  2. 3 Francoise August 31, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    The cover looks really creepy. I hate it when characters have wild mood swings and you just get so confused as to why they’re acting that way.I like it when the romance isn’t the focus of the story because I hate it when romance just overclouds the storyline.

    • 4 Leigh (LittleBookStar) August 31, 2013 at 9:40 PM

      It really does! But the pictures inside are creepier. Yeah the mood swings just threw me off I’m like “HUH?” I love it when the romance does not overtake the plot too! It’s such a nice, fresh read when a YA book doesn’t have romance as the focus of the story.

  3. 5 Megan August 31, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    The cover of this one is so creepy! I’m glad you enjoyed it, although the characters sound a bit annoying.

  4. 7 Janina (@Synchro_Reading) August 31, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    I’ve been really curious about this book. I haven’t seen many reviews on it, but I really want to give it a try. It sounds very interesting and I agree with Megan that the cover is creepy 🙂 Great review!

  5. 9 Kezia D September 1, 2013 at 6:12 AM

    LOL, mood swings! xD This one sounds like a very creepy and scary book! Not just the cover but the way you described it too. I don’t usually read horror though but I am so glad this book worked for you!

  6. 11 glass September 1, 2013 at 6:31 AM

    I’m reading Between the Devil and the Deep Blue See now and it should be dark story with elements of horror, but I don’t find it that scary so far.
    I’ll try with this one. Great review!

  7. 13 Becca @ Nawanda Files September 1, 2013 at 7:04 AM

    I love horror books, so I may have to check this out. The ads on Goodreads sidebar scared the crap out of me at night. They were freaky! And I can’t believe there are pictures in the book!!! That makes me super curious now. Glad you liked it, Leigh 😀

  8. 15 Charlotte @ Gypsy Reviews September 1, 2013 at 7:14 AM

    Ooo, I’ve been hearing quite mixed reviews about this but I think I might give it a try sometime if I see it in the library 🙂 That’s really weird about the characters though o.O

    • 16 Leigh (LittleBookStar) September 1, 2013 at 4:08 PM

      Same. Before I got into it, I read some reviews and I saw some 1 star reviews and I think it’s b/c Asylum is being compared to Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children JUST because they both have pictures -_- really? I haven’t read MPHFPC but I heard the children have powers? Well, Asylum doesn’t and I feel like these two books are far similar from each other.

  9. 17 allielittlebirdiebooks September 1, 2013 at 9:25 AM

    Oooh this sounds really intriguing! I love horror movies and it’s made me wonder lately why I don’t read more ‘scary’ novels – seems like something I’d love!

    This might just be the first one I try 🙂

    – Allie @ Little Birdie Books

  10. 19 Eileen @ Singing and Reading in the Rain September 1, 2013 at 10:28 AM

    Like Charlotte, I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews, and I don’t know how I would react to the mood swings of the characters because if a character does get moody, I want to understand why. I’m glad that you thought the writing was good, too.

    Thanks for sharing!

  11. 21 readerswonderland September 1, 2013 at 3:43 PM

    I haven’t read that many scary books so I wouldn’t be a good judge on the fear factor but the story does sound pretty good. Characters seem a bit iffy, but the pictures sound cool!

  12. 23 Asti (A Bookish Heart) September 2, 2013 at 3:53 AM

    I keep seeing this cover around and thinking “Oooh creeepy!” (Especially the animated one I saw on Tumblr…) I really haven’t read any YA horror, so I’m really curious as to whether or not I’ll like it. But good writing and not a lot of romance, sounds good to me! I’m off to add it to my wishlist. I really think I should check a horror book out sometime…

  13. 24 Jeann @ Happy Indulgence September 2, 2013 at 5:44 AM

    Sounds like a scary story Leigh! I enjoyed your review, especially when you talked about the mood swings hehe. I haven’t heard about this story before, might check it out!

  14. 25 mvthebookbabe September 3, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    It would be more believable if he actually went to his classes, LOL! This sounds interesting, though. For some reason I really love the idea of old insane asylums. Or old anything, really. The creepier the better, right? (: Dan sounds like the kind of guy I’d stay away from, though. “DON’T OPEN THE DOOR!” ;P Awesome review, Leigh!

  15. 26 Meggy (Adrift on Vulcan) September 3, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    Asylum looks and sounds really good, but the torrent of mixed and negative reviews I’ve been seeing lately puts me off. :/ I like that the writing flowed smoothly, but characters with strange mood swings? Err… not so good. But if it left you on the edge of your seat, then that’s a good book, IMO! Great review as always, Leigh!

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Well hello there! Thank you so much for stopping by. Little Book Star is a young adult book blog ran by Leigh, an 18 year old avid reader. This blog consists of book reviews, giveaways, author interviews, and more! Feel free to explore!

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