The Road Of The Dead by Kevin Brooks

The Road Of The Dead

Written by Kevin Brooks

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Shortlisted for the Carnegie Award 2007.

Judges' comment:

This is original, fast paced storytelling that offers teenagers an uncompromising, powerful novel. The hero is untraditional, yet compelling; the story dark and violent, yet the violence is never gratuitous; it warns about the dangers of violence but is never didactic. This is superb writing.


The Road Of The Dead by Kevin Brooks

Late one night, two brothers learn that their sister has died in the worst way imaginable. She’s found, strangled, in a desolate place hundreds of miles from their East London home.

Ruben is the smarter of the two, with a gift for getting into other people’s hearts; Cole may be older, but he’s a devil’s angel who doesn’t care if he lives or dies. Together, they set out to find their own answers and retrace Rachel’s final journey.


When I finished The Road of the Dead, I felt that I, too, had been on a journey. It was no walk in the park but I was very glad I’d been.

Readers will be pulled in by the strong and believable storyline, and the author’s sharp ear for dialogue.


About the Author

Kevin Brooks

It was the publication of Martyn Pig that changed everything. After being turned down by a number of publishers, Kevin Brooks sent his manuscript to The Chicken House, who jumped on the chance to publish it. They released Martyn Pig in the spring of 2002. In the U.K, the book went on to be short-listed for the Carnegie Medal and win a Branford Boase Award for a first best novel. And in the United States, it was named a Publishers Weekly Flying Start and an ALA Book of the Year, among its many accolades.

One of Brooks' favorite genres is the detective novel, and this shows in his writing, "I think my awareness of plot comes from having read a lot of crime fiction. When Martyn Pig came out, the reviewers were saying things such as 'well plotted' novel. I found that surprising because I didn't have any idea that I could plot or structure a story. I do plan, but I'm not consciously aware that I'm building a plot that creates good suspense; it comes naturally because I've soaked myself in those sorts of plots."

Why did he decide to write for children? "There are not many differences, I don't think, between writing for children and writing for adults," Brooks says, "because children aren't that different from adults. But I would say the story is the main thing, with children. With adults you might use different styles and structures, perhaps indulge in fiddly niceties. Writing for children brings you down to basics."

In 2015 his novel THE BUNKER DIARY was the controversial winner of the prestigious CILIP Carnegie Medal. Brooks was previously shortlisted three times for the award with, MARTYN PIG, THE ROAD OF THE DEAD and BLACK RABBIT SUMMER. Kevin lives in North Yorkshire.

Photo credit: Nadja Meister

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Kevin Brooks
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Chicken House Ltd

Publication date

8th January 2007




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