The Madness Underneath (Shades of London Series #2)

The Madness Underneath (Shades of London Series #2)

by Maureen Johnson


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The Madness Underneath (Shades of London Series #2) by Maureen Johnson

The New York Times bestseller!

A new threat haunts the streets of London…
Rory Deveaux has changed in ways she never could have imagined since moving to London and beginning a new life at boarding school. As if her newfound ability to see ghosts hadn’t complicated her life enough, Rory’s recent brush with the Jack the Ripper copycat has left her with an even more unusual and intense power. Now, a new string of inexplicable deaths is threatening London, and Rory has evidence that they are no coincidence. Something sinister is going on, and it is up to her to convince the city’s secret ghost-policing squad to listen before it’s too late.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780142427545
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 12/10/2013
Series: Shades of London Series , #2
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 128,449
Product dimensions: 5.74(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Maureen Johnson ( is the author of nine young adult novels, and is contributor to two short story collections, including the New York Times bestselling Let It Snow.   Maureen lives in New York City.

Read an Excerpt

I wasn’t going to be able to cope with many more of these sessions.

Excerpted from "The Madness Underneath"
by .
Copyright © 2013 Maureen Johnson.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Young Readers Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

A New York Times Bestseller

“Creepy, clever and ambiguous second volume in the Shades of London series . . . As always, Johnson wields words with a supple facility that keeps those pages turning. The London minutiae are utterly engaging, the villains satisfyingly weird and numerous. And there is kissing.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Rory’s internal monologue sparkles with the wit that Johnson’s fans (and most of Twitter) will recognize, which is plenty entertaining. The second half will satisfy readers’ craving for what they came for—Rory’s investigation of London’s latest ghost crimes—while laying tragic groundwork for the next book.” —Publishers Weekly

"Readers will remain on the edge of their seats. . . . Johnson’s sharp wit is ever-present, and her heroine is the perfect blend of snark and teen anxiety." —School Library Journal

Raves for Maureen Johnson and The Name of the Star, the first book in the Shades of London series
“A gorgeously written, chilling, atmospheric thriller. The streets of London have never been so sinister or so romantic.” —Cassandra Clare, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Infernal Devices and The Mortal Instruments series
Johnson “turns paranormal on its head . . . realistic and creepy. A real page-turner.” —SLJ
“An unputdownable thrill ride that will leave you gasping, laughing, and dreaming of London.” —Ally Carter, New York Times bestselling author of the Gallagher Girls series and Heist Society
“Johnson proves again that she has the perfect brisk pitch for YA literature, never overplaying
(or underplaying) the various elements of tension, romance, and attitude. [A] cut above.” —Booklist
“This book made me want to give up everything, move to London, and fight ghosts.” —Holly Black, New York Times bestselling author of The Curse Workers series
“Clever, scary, little-bit-sexy . . . . supernatural thriller. Will have readers madly eager for the next installment.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Suspenseful and utterly absorbing.” —The Horn Book

“[R]eaders looking for nonstop fun, action, and a little gore have come to the right place.”—Publisher’s Weekly

Customer Reviews

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The Madness Underneath 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 40 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a fan of the author's work to begin with and really loved the first book. I think this book is a great sequel in that it takes the story on a turn that I did not see coming. I've read the editorial reviews where they think the beginning is slow because of the detail about Rory's therapy, but I think that, admittedly not having gone through the experience of a ghost nearly killing me, a person would be horribly traumatized and would not emerge from said experience being 'cool' with the world. I will say that the ending first goes in the direction I have been wanting, then turns abruptly into the ending I most feared after finishing Name of the Star. Overall, well worth reading and I can't wait for the next book!
Sarah_UK1 More than 1 year ago
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins Publishers and Netgalley.) This is book 2 in the ‘Shades of London’ series, and picks up a couple of months after the end of book 1. **Warning – some unavoidable spoilers for book 1 ‘The Name of The Star’** Following Rory’s encounter with the ‘Jack the Ripper’ copycat in book 1, she’s been recovering at her parents rented home in Bristol, and seeing a therapist 3 times a week, even though she can’t tell her therapist what really happened in London. Rory’s discovery that she seems to now be a human Terminus means that she knows she has to go back to London though, and she has to try and find Stephen, Boo and Callum and explain to them what has happened. Finding herself sent back to ‘Wexford’ Boarding School in London, Rory finds herself concentrating less on her studies, and more on finding the spook squad, and busting some more murderous ghosts. How long can Rory continue neglecting her studies though? Can Charlotte’s strange therapist help her too? How long can the ghost busters continue without a working Terminus? And how does Rory feel about her possible future as part of their squad? This was a great sequel to ‘The Name of The Star’, I loved Rory, I loved the atmospheric nature of the story, and the ending was so sad it made me cry! Rory is quite damaged by her previous experiences in London, and it’s taking her a while to work through things, especially seeing as she now has no one that she can confide in. She knows that she needs to go back to London, but it’s more because she needs people she can talk to, rather than wanting to go back to school. It’s really easy to relate to Rory in this respect, because she really is doing her best to recover from her trauma, and she seems to know better than anyone what she needs, even if it’s not what everyone else thinks that she needs. It was good to go back to Wexford and catch up with all of Rory’s old friends though, especially when she managed to get back in contact with Stephen, Boo, and Callum. It was obvious how much they all needed each other, and even though Rory wasn’t ready to jump straight back into the job, she was able to focus on important things, and help when she was really needed. She even put extra effort into trying to solve a murder which wasn’t necessarily unsolved, and kept an eye out for things resembling what happened during her own attack. There was a small hint of romance in this book, but it was very, very slight. The main storyline was concerned with Rory’s recovery, and the new ghostly murders happening in London, and it flowed really well. I liked how it wasn’t the same storyline rehashed, and I liked how all the characters had been changed by what had happened in book 1. The ending to this book was a big shock though! Something totally unexpected and sad and shocking happened which I really wasn’t expecting, and it even made me cry! It’s obvious that there will be another book after this one, but how Rory will recover from this newest tragedy remains to be seem, I can only assume that she will be even more damaged in the next book than she was in this one which is really sad. I really want to read the next book now though! Overall; a great ghostly/paranormal YA murder mystery. 8 out of 10.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Disappointed!!! Loved the first book but I feel cheated with this one. This book contained no real "story" just a bunch of plot points for the future books. Slow start, no dialog with supporting characters a terrible ending sealed it's fate.Even the cover was a let down. I won't be looking for future books in this series. If i could get my money back i would
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I didn't like this one quite as much as the first one just because I missed the secondary characters--I felt like they didn't get as much screen time. BUT I continue to think that Rory is great and I can't wait to read the next one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I picked up Maureen Johnson’s The Name of the Star on a whim. I’d read some of her slightly lighter fare, and since I was on a paranormal/books taking place in Europe kick at that point, I thought I’d give it a shot. Though I enjoyed the majority of the book, it was the ending that made my eyes bug out, that had me ranting to one of my roommates while she attempted to make herself dinner. Since then, I’ve been looking forward to The Madness Underneath. With a title like that, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Possibly some insane ghosts, or maybe insanity on the narrator’s part due to the aftermath of Star’s events. What I ended up finding was a mixture of neither and both. Rory spends much of the story trying to cope with the results of the first book’s revelation, and trying to figure out what her new ‘normal’ is now that whatever old normal she’d known is gone. As the summary forewarns, she ends up back with the ghost-hunting shades when new killings threaten the London neighborhood near her school. And that’s about where the summary ends. I spent most of the book waiting to find out how these new ghosts were appearing and what their motives were, and though some of the answers were hinted at or implied, I have a feeling we’re in for plenty more shockers when book three comes out. There’s not too much I can say about the two biggest twists of the story, if only because I’m not a spoilery sort of person. What I can say is that I had a hunch about one—although not how bad things would eventually become—and absolutely didn’t see the other coming at all. If the end of Star led to incoherent vocalizations, then the end of Madness stunned me speechless. Part of me had been waiting for something to happen, but the other part had no idea who would be victimized or how it would go. The Madness Underneath in no way suffers from ‘middle book syndrome.’ As soon as I turned the last page, I wished the third one would appear on my desk. In lieu of spoilers, what I will say is this: If you thought the Ripper ghost was terrifying, just wait until these villains show themselves. I’d recommend this, but I also recommend you read it in a crowded place.
MissPrint More than 1 year ago
Mostly Coherent Review: The Madness Underneath (2013) by Maureen Johnson is the second book in Johnson's Shades of London Quartet. It takes up very closely where book 1, The Name of the Star, left off. I'm not even going to summarize this book because it is essentially unintelligible if you haven't read The Name of the Star. That's just the way it is. As such, this review is much more off the cuff than my usual postings. (I also have a theory that the Shades of London series should really be a trilogy with the content of this book spread between book one and book three, but that's a different matter.) I was very conflicted about this book because I really loved the start of the series and was excited to see what happened next. Then I read the book and . . . now I don't know what to feel because not much actually happens in The Madness Underneath. There are red herrings, there is moping and panic about school. There is not enough of my beloved Stephen. And then the book kind of ends without resolving anything--except confirming that everything is ruined forever. There is a very satisfying thread with Rory coming back to herself and learning to be strong in the wake of injury. But that is dampened by having to slog through scenes of the most unsatisfying book relationship in the entire world between Rory and Jerome. I don't like being held hostage by a series with cliffhanger endings and unresolved plot threads. Which is exactly what Johnson delivered in The Madness Underneath. And yet, I so loved the start of the series and I am still so fond of Rory's narrative voice that I'll probably continue with the series despite my extreme frustration and distress. I've read books where worse things happen and everything works out in the end but my faith in Maureen Johnson was sorely tested by this book. Sorely. Tested. If you too were deeply upset by the ending of The Madness Underneath, Maureen Johnson has a handy "therapeutic" post for readers on her Tumblr. First Thoughts: So . . . strong beginning, draggy middle where ostensibly nothing is happening. Then that ending? That ruined everything for all eternity? I want to be heartbroken but I'm just kind of furious and not sure I even want to continue with the series? Nothing even makes sense anymore. And I know I had faith when Lorne was beheaded on Angel and that worked out. But this is really pushing it and feels more like when Fred was possessed and killed off. Just saying.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Paperback_Princess More than 1 year ago
This book was absolutely maddening. I really enjoyed how great the first book was, it was an original idea, and put a totally new twist on ghosts. I had to wait to actually write this review because I was super frustrated by the ending, and that severely tainted my view of the book. I really enjoyed getting back into Rory's world. One of the things that I loved about the first book was the totally unique set of characters and how they all interacted. I loved Stephen and Callum and Boo and Jazza, all the crazy named people that wandered in and out of Rory's life. I was glad that she was able to return and call back into the swing of things with everyone including back in with the Shades. Its actually been very hard for me to write this review. I read it back in February and was so angry when I finished it that I really needed to sit with it and think on how it made me feel, and now that time has indeed passed, I find that I still really enjoyed the book and I am looking forward to the third book in the series. This one had so many great twists and turns and even the new story line of the ghosts made it worth while. I did feel that the big bad in this particular book was a little too easy to pin point. It was obvious from the introduction that this character was up to no good and that added somewhat to my frustration at this book when I finished it, but I have to hand it to Johnson, she isn't catering to what her readers will what to read, she is writing for her characters even if it leads to things that they do not want to happen. Like Boo getting thrown in front of a car in the first book. Either way, I am eagerly awaiting the third book and cannot wait to get my hands on such a delicious book once again.
Andrea17 More than 1 year ago
I love The Name of the Star. Maureen knows how to keep her audience entranced and on the edge of their seats. Girl kept it up with The Madness Underneath, the only difference being that I wasn't freaking out until the last few chapters of this novel. The Madness Underneath has a slower plot than The Name of the Star, but it is no less engaging. With The Madness Underneath Rory is dealing with aftermath of being stabbed and almost killed by the Ripper. I got the feeling through her narrative, that Rory is (more or less) essentially mentally and physically able to handle the situation. One of the scenes I really enjoyed is when Jazza goes into the bathroom with Rory where it all happened and Rory states it's "just a bathroom." This scene alone speaks to the strength and courage of her character, that she is able to walk into the bathroom where she almost died and not be deeply affect. However, despite her desire to return to the pre-Ripper time in her life, Rory's school work is suffering. She had not kept up on assignments during the month she was gone, is unable to catch up, and must continue to lie to those she cares about. Unlike its predecessor, here we are dealing more with Rory's personal struggles more so than with a murdering ghost. I enjoy this look into Rory's personal struggle. Not that I'm glad she's struggling, but we get to know her more on a personal level. When she realizes that perhaps Wexford isn't the place for her, she has a hard time accepting that and becomes desperate to find somewhere she does belong.  It it not until the later half of The Madness Underneath that we truly get into the nitty gritty of the mystery at hand and we're back to the familiar suspense found in The Name of the Star. It was at this point that I found the novel impossible to put down. I'm talking, I was reading it while cooking dinner and, since it'd be rude to read during dinner, stared at it until everything was cleaned up and I could once again pick it up. As it stands, I should've listened to everybody who reviewed this novel and waited until we were closer to The Shadow Cabinet's release date. The ending - OMG! That is one of the best, or worst depending on how you look at it, cliffhangers I have ever read. I'm at a loss for words on how to respond to the ending. The Madess Underneath is a great follow up to The Name of the Star. Rory has become a favorite character of mine and Maureen is a wonderful author. She knows how to weave stories to keep you guessing, shocked, thrilled, and in the end, utterly destroyed. That last bit sounds like a bad thing, but it's not. I cannot wait to see how she concludes this wonderful trilogy and I cross my fingers that the release date isn't pushed back again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can't wait to read the next book.
KimberlyT More than 1 year ago
One of the few books that doesn't suffer from "2nd book syndrome". I enjoyed this as much, if not more, than the first. Excellent read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this bok in litterally five hours. I was captivated with ever beautiful word written. I cried at the deaths, felt light with the kisses. Maureen Johnson has gor a wonderful talent that is constantly demonstrated throughout this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dazzlamb More than 1 year ago
If you read my review of THE NAME OF THE STAR then it surely doesn't surprise you that I didn't want to wait a second to start its sequel right after turning the last page. From the beginning THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH sets a slightly different tone than THE NAME OF THE STAR. For instance this second part of Rory's story is not as gruesome and bloody as the Jack the Ripper muderer that had his claws terrifingly close around Rory's neck in the first book. With Rory uncovering the origin of new ghost occurrences around Wexford, a new kind of psychological tension slowly seeps into the story and through the cracks that once contained the restless patients of a psychiatric unit. Rory is a character that I could easily imagine being friends with. She's very independent, got a great sense of humour, keeps on babbling about funny things that come to her mind and she's got a strong intuition for what is right and wrong. I found myself enjoying and soaking up all the interesting little facts Rory researches in relation to the mysterious death in a bar near Wexford. The story wasn't as profoundly supported by such curious details as the first book's case which I guess has to be owed to the popular and widely discussed phenomenon that's immanent to Jack the Ripper. Rory's life has not nearly returned to normal and she's still trying to deal with her newfound gift, a gift she was left with after a Ripper imitating ghost failed to kill her. But the ghosts are as present as ever and suddenly Rory is of high interest for the group behind the ghost hunting unit of our friends Stephen, Callum and Boo. Facing new missions and mysteries around all kinds of ghosts, the four grow together and form an unbeatable team. I also really appreciated and savoured the time Maureen reserved for Rory and Stephen to get to know each other better and learn to love the little quirks about the other. I rooted for Stephen since the middle of THE NAME OF THE STAR and was hoping for Rory to fall for him, so you can imagine the grin on my face every time these two got some quiet investigative time together. Life would be too easy if we all could be just friends, so of course there is another group interested in Rory's talents. I wouldn't have minded if the story had countinued with ever new ghostly murder cases and no additional hostile group suddenly appearing and wanting Rory to join their cult. I thought THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH didn't house as many surprising turns as its predecessor and I mostly guessed what was going to happen until I came to the last thirty pages or so...and the final chapters became a major mood killer! I was so ecstatic one moment, and royally pissed the other! Readers will probably be wondering, how Maureen Johnson could let happen something like that. Right now I can't think of a statisfiable outcome or solution to what we all had to witness! At one point someone in THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH tells a story and Rory says that she feels like her absorption into the story was total. When she wrote this book Maureen Johnson surely knew that her stories had the very same effect on its readers. And as always the frequently asked question: Why do we have to wait another year for the next book in the series? 4,5/5 ****/* THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH – A terrific and dazzling new shade of YA! The new crime cases of this sequel might not have fascinated me as much as the original Jack the Ripper murders of THE NAME OF THE STAR, still I couldn't resist the psychologically strong pull of this new SHADES OF LONDON. I fear this series will continue to have me in its killer grip. And doesn't the third book, THE SHADOW CABINET, sound too spooky and nightmarishly good to be true?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To whom may conern: may rate and review on underneath. I really adoere this books. I give five star.
kirstyviz More than 1 year ago
In The Madness Underneath, the second Shades of London installment, the reader finds Rory in Bristol with her parents still recovering from the vicious attack which almost left her dead at the end of The Name of the Star. However,Rory now discovers she has been left with new powers, and when it is suggested she return to Wexford she agrees, unaware that Stephen, Callum and Boo need her help. I found The Madness Underneath slower than The Name of the Star as I felt Maureen Johnson develops her characters, particularly those of Stephen and Rory, and obviously the plot line is less gritty, though still shocking. Although the first book was about Jack the Ripper I felt this story was darker because of the intent of the group involved and Maureen Johnson has now left Rory in a difficult position at the book's end, so I very much look forward to reading Shades of London #3. This is a book for anyone who has read The Name of the Star!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Amazing book! Story was a but weaker than the first book but it was still very good. Leads you on to the next book and makes you willing to wait! Great read!
angelus1753 More than 1 year ago
Different from, but just as good as, The Name of the Star. Johnson does a great job of keeping the reader interested, and gasping in shock. I definitely yelled at the book trying to get the character's to notice some of the goings-on. Definitely does not disappoint, and I can't wait for the final installment in the series.