Escape from Asylum (Asylum #0.5)
The nightmare is just beginning.
Ricky Desmond has been through this all before. If he could just get through to his mother, he could convince her that he doesn’t belong at Brookline. From the man who thinks he can fly to the woman who killed her husband, the other patients are nothing like him; all he did was lose his temper just a little bit, just the once. But when Ricky is selected by the sinister Warden Crawford for a very special program—a program that the warden claims will not cure him but perfect him—Ricky realizes that he may not be able to wait for his mom a second longer. With the help of a sympathetic nurse and a fellow patient, Ricky needs to escape now.
Set long before Dan, Abby, and Jordan ever walked the hallways of the Brookline asylum—back when it was still a functioning psych ward and not a dorm—Escape from Asylum is a mind-bending and scary installment in the Asylum series that can stand on its own for new readers or provide missing puzzle pieces for series fans.
Though I haven’t read the Asylum series, this prequel, ESCAPE FROM ASYLUM, is easy to read on its own. The combination of horror writing and creepy pictures Roux is known for make this a story not to read in the dark, as we follow Ricky’s terrifying encounters with the Warden. The tone is spine-chilling throughout, leaving you both eager to turn the page to find out what happens next but also scared to do so.
While Ricky is a solid character on his own, arrogant, cheeky, and genuine, the side characters, Kay and Nurse Ash, are a welcome addition to the story. Both are tough and often as frustrated as Ricky, though the idea of escaping seems much less feasible to them than Ricky. Even so, they band together, and their touching connections bring hope, even when all seems lost. The banter and sweet romantic tension between Kay and Ricky provides a few nice swoons and breaks from the scares.
Fans of American Horror Story and things that go bump in the night will devour the latest from Madeleine Roux. Ricky’s unforgettable journey will haunt you for days.