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Inside the Outside - Martin Lastrapes 3.5

This is a hard one to review since it felt like 3 separate stories.

The first is all introduces a cult type commune in the mountains. It was the best of the three parts of the stories. I guess it makes me a little morbid to think that since the story was all about how the village inhabitants live as cannibals as their way of life. The group is known as The Divinity and human flesh has been their sustenance for decades. Divinity children don’t know their biological parents and are raised by the village. The story is told through the eyes of a 14 year old girl named Timber. It was such a different concept that I couldn’t help but finish this section in one sitting just to satisfy my impatient curiosity.

The second part of the story involves the secondary characters. These are Timber’s “Outside” friends. Their back stories, while interesting, didn’t have the same “I need to read the next chapter” feeling as the first part. Later these characters would become Timber’s family and most important people in her life, but it felt more about them than Timber.

The third part consists of the first five years of life on the “Outside”. It is told through another source much further in the future. I liked this section because it had plenty of action and kept the story moving quickly. But this was my least favorite of the three parts since the ending is a little abrupt and leaves the reader to imagine what happened next. I felt cheated spending so much of the book around Timber to not have full closure on her life. You just kind of assume they all lived happily ever after since someone is narrating the story after the fact.

What made this book scary for me is that it is actually plausible. There is no paranormal element to it to make it farfetched. As other readers have stated in their reviews, there is a little bit of everything: Friendship, Family, Love, Hatred, Sex (consensual and non- consensual) and Cannibalism. Be warned though, it is very gruesome and you will learn more about dismembering a body than you thought you’d want to know.