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Dark Eden Paperback – April 24, 2012

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Editorial Reviews


A spooky, psychological thriller. With seven different characters who have seven different fears, there is bound to be someone for readers to relate to in one way or another...the supernatural twist at the end will leave teens with more questions than answers. (School Library Journal)

“A compelling read that transposes the best aspects of classic horror storytelling onto a modern backwoods adventure reluctantly experienced by seven terrified teens.” (Los Angeles Times)

“DARK EDEN is a fast-paced thrill ride.” (Los Angeles Times)

“The added supernatural twist...maintains Fort Eden’s air of doom and gloom to the very end. (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)

About the Author

Patrick Carman is the New York Times bestselling author of such acclaimed series as the Land of Elyon and Atherton, the teen superhero novel Thirteen Days to Midnight, and the first two books in the Pulse series. A multimedia pioneer, Patrick authored The Black Circle, the fifth title in the 39 Clues series, and the groundbreaking Dark Eden, Skeleton Creek, and Trackers books. An enthusiastic reading advocate, Patrick has visited more than one thousand schools, developed village library projects in Central America, and created author outreach programs for communities. He lives in Walla Walla, Washington, with his family.


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Product Details

  • Series: Dark Eden (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books; Reprint edition (April 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062009710
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062009715
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #364,890 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I have been a lifelong writer and storyteller. Salem, Oregon is where I spent my formative years and I graduated from Willamette University. After college, I spent a decade living in Portland, Oregon where I worked in advertising, game design, and technology.

I've written young adult and children's books for Scholastic, Little Brown Books For Young Readers and Katherine Tegen Books/ HarperCollins Publishers.

I've been fortunate enough to have had some bestselling series work: The Land of Elyon, Atherton, Elliot's Park, 39 Clues, and Skeleton Creek. Here's a fun note...the books have been translated into approximately two dozen languages. Currently I'm developing a few new-media projects. Check out DARK EDEN to experience this type of cross-platform project.

When I'm not writing or creating a story, I spend my free time supporting literacy campaigns and community organizations, fly fishing, playing basketball and tennis, doing crosswords, watching movies, dabbling in video games, reading (lots), and (more than anything else) spending time with my wife and two daughters.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By ĴĴ VINE VOICE on September 22, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
It may sound like a cheesy or cheap way to describe this book, but I truly have to say that it was a page-turning thriller which I couldn't put down. "Dark Eden" is twisted but only in a good way, giving the reader a psychological trip that won't be forgotten anytime soon. I don't rate books on Amazon with 5 stars frequently, but I think that this book deserves all 5 stars because of the excellent storytelling, character development, and technical writing present in this work.

STORY - Will Besting has a fear. Will doesn't have a normal little phobia, though, such as being scared of heights or creeped out by snakes. No, Will has an irrational, nightmarish fear that has caused him to need counseling for a very long time. The counseling doesn't seem to be doing much good, however. His doctor finally admits that she can't do anything else for him except send him off on a week-long retreat with six other patients that have equally frightening fears which she hasn't been able to cure either. Will doesn't want to go, but his parents overrule him and send him to a place they are confident will heal him. A place where the cure to fear is believed to be fear itself. A place where the teens may leave, never able to be cured again.

WRITING STYLE - The story is fantastic, but I will admit that it started out a bit slow, seeming like it was simply describing a field trip instead of a trip to a healing mental retreat. However, the story quickly picked up speed early on and never slowed down again.

With the exception of an intro and epilogue-like ending, the book is divided into six main chapters: one for each of the teens at the retreat with two of the boys squeezed into the same chapter.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Reena Jacobs on July 13, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Dark Eden started off quite slow. I wasn't sure what to make of it. After reading the blurb, I thought the book would be a YA paranormal, but the further I progressed, the more it just seemed like a book about a boy with a phobia. In fact, I wasn't even sure what his phobia was at first, only that he was elusive... and a bit of a stalker.

I have to admit, I was a bit disappointed the book was so far off from what I'd expected. I'm not saying a book about kids with mental disorders couldn't be interesting. After all, I quite enjoyed Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson. It was more on the lines, I had no idea what the ultimate purpose of the story was until well into the book. What were the stakes? Simply spying on kids with phobias wasn't enough for me.

Eventually, I did discover what was at stake: be cured of the phobias using some weird, undisclosed method or continue to live with the fear. Even with the stakes laid out, they weren't big enough to make this work stellar. Interestingly enough, the bread crumbs left as I followed the story kept me entertained and eager for the big reveal. Unfortunately, it never came.

I hit the end of the book, well what seemed like the end, and was sorely disappointed in the conclusion. The ending was followed by several short sections which explained what was really going on in Dark Eden, and this is where I hit the paranormal aspect of the book. The oh by the way, this is what happened and why wrapped up everything in a nice package, but the presentation was flat and lacking in appeal.

I hate to be overly critical, but Dark Eden by Patrick Carman was mediocre, which is a shame, because it had the potential to be so much more.

I received this work from the publisher in exchange for a review. 2.5 stars
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By T. Adlam TOP 500 REVIEWER on December 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Dark Eden is the first person account of Will Besting, a fifteen-year-old with problems--problems his psychiatrist can't solve--so he's sent, along with six other fifteen-year-olds, to Fort Eden, a place which promises to cure each of them of their debilitating fears. However, Will has the upper hand. He took something he shouldn't have and learned all about the place where they were going, or so he thought.

The first three-quarters of this book is moderately paced. It's where we learn all about Will and the other characters and what they're most afraid of. The story of Fort Eden is also carefully unfolded and serves as the backdrop for revealing each of the teenagers' fears. At times, however, it tended to drag and there wasn't nearly as much psychological suspense as I'd hoped for. Also, while the first part of the book was all about character development, more than a few of the characters lacked depth.

A couple of relationships develop in the story, but neither one felt genuine. Without getting into too much detail, which means venturing into spoiler territory, I can see how the interest may have come about on Will's side, but buying Marisa's level of interest in Will (in less than a week, mind you) was difficult. I was more inclined to believe the relationship between Avery and Davis, but it was too much of a blur.

As I read, I thought I had the story all figured out and was prepared to write the book off as yet another predictable thriller (and it should be noted that this book is thriller, not horror), but there was a nice twist which came at the end. The twist, though it borrowed from some other genres (think sci-fi/supernatural), was unexpected and worked for the story and left me pleasantly surprised.
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