Fellside by M.R.Carey

Fellside by M. R. Carey
Narrated by Flinty Williams
Released: April 2016 by Hachette Audio
Length: 15+ Hours
Amazon ♦ Goodreads

Jess Moulson is convicted of murder. But it's a murder she can't remember committing. Nothing is quite clear from the drug-fuelled night when a blaze set in Jess' apartment killed the little boy upstairs. But when the media brands her a child killer, she starts to believe it herself.

Now she's on her way to Fellside, the biggest, most formidable women's prison in Europe, standing in the bleak Yorkshire moors.

But Jess won't be alone in her prison cell. Lurking in the shadows is an unexpected visitor...the ghost of the 10-year-old boy she killed. He says he needs her help - and he won't take no for an answer.

My Thoughts

Once again I am disappointed due to my own stupidity. For some reason (not reading the blurb, perhaps?), I assumed that this novel was set in the same world as The Girl with All the Gifts. It was not. There is no zombie plague here, if that’s what you were hoping for. But I'm probably the only dummy who didn't read the blurb.

Jess is a heroin addict who is sent to Fellside Prison after an unfortunate event ends with a child’s death. Jess has no recollection of his death but is filled with remorse and guilt. Alex was her friend, her only friend, and she felt protective of him. Now she doesn’t seem to care what happens to her and has given up on living. As she nears death from a self-imposed hunger strike, she sees Alex in ghostly form and realizes there is quite possibly a lot more to the story of his death than she was led to believe.

What follows is a story that I wouldn’t consider horror at all. It’s more a story of prison corruption, evil doers and innocents caught up in a big old mess. Jess struggles to discover the truth about Alex’s death while she also has figure out how to survive prison life. Jess is a great flawed character and the plot, for the most part, was gripping and grueling but I wasn’t really in the mood for this type of story when I picked it up and found myself a bit bored here and there.

The good? Flinty Williams narrates the audio and you can’t go wrong with that accent.

The bad? It’s a little slow and unless you’re into reading about prison politics you may find yourself a little bored too. There are a lot of characters and many are called by their first names and their last names by other characters. I had a hard time keeping them all straight and, in the end, I am not sure I did.

I’m giving it a three because it didn’t grab me but I didn’t despise it either.

Challenge Update


  1. You know, I think it would be easy to think this was set in the same world because to me, the covers are similar. Well, I guess they are different, but in the same style which could be very misleading. I have this on my TBR but have been in no real hurry to read it. I don't know if I would be that interested in prison politics.

    1. It was certainly marketed a wee bit deceptively but I do need to stop grabbing books without reading the blurb. I stopped because so many books were being spoiled that way.

  2. I find that cover pretty misleading especially with the yellow circle with Melanie in it...it makes it sound like another in the series. I did thankfully check the blurb before buying! I wouldn't be interested in this one as stories set in prisons don't really interest me.

    1. You are so right and they certainly fooled me though it doesn't much to fool me ;)

  3. When this first came out I hoped it was a follow up to The Girl With All the Gifts. Then I found out it wasn't...which is why I ended up not reading it. I wasn't interested in reading a story set in prison about an addict. Now I'm thinking that was probably a good decision.

  4. Too bad this one wasn't what you hoped it would be. I have the audio of The Girl With All the Gifts and hope to get to it this year at some point. Great review!

    1. The Girl With All the Gifts was much more my thing. I hope you enjoy it when get a chance to listen. Flinty Williams does great stuff with the narration.

  5. The covers are indeed similar. I assumed The Girk with all the gifts was successful enough publishers would make the author's work distinct enough they wouldn't need such similar covers :(

  6. You could have been thinking about The Boy on the Bridge? Either that or the fact that they put the little circle with The Girl with All the Gifts right there on the cover. I hate when they do that.


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