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Dark Room Etiquette (Paperback)

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Dark Room Etiquette By Robin Roe Cover Image
Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
1 on hand, as of Jun 16 9:20pm
(YA/14 AND UP)

Staff Reviews

Is it Sayers, or is it Daniel? This is the definition of a psychological thriller, where you're "comfortable" in the beginning, and on the edge of your seat until the final page. A kidnapping turned brainwashing and mental regression, followed by trying to assimilate back into society where you thought you belonged. This book explores both the best and worst of humanity, the emotional toll that high school can take, with the added torture of trauma recovery and stigma around family roles, religion, social hierarchy, and what money can buy.

— Rhi


We Were Liars meets Room in this masterfully plotted psychological thriller from the critically acclaimed author of A List of Cages, Robin Roe.


Popularity, good looks, perfect grades—there's nothing Sayers' family money can't buy.

Until he's kidnapped by a man who tells him the privileged life he's been living is based on a lie. 

Trapped in a windowless room, without knowing why he's been taken or how long the man plans to keep him shut away, Sayers faces a terrifying new reality. To survive, he must forget the world he once knew, and play the part his abductor has created for him. 

But as time passes, the line between fact and fiction starts to blur, and Sayers begins to wonder if he can escape . . . before he loses himself.

About the Author

Robin Roe has a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a master’s from Harvard. She counseled adolescents in Boston before she moved to Dallas to run a mentoring program for at-risk teens. Her debut novel A List of Cages was named one of the Best Young Adult Books of the Year by Goodreads, Chapters Indigo, EpicReads, BookPage, Powell’s Books, The Texas Library Association, and Buzzfeed. You can read more about Robin at and follow her on Instagram @robinroewriter.

Praise For…

“I burned through the pages of Dark Room Etiquette—riveted, transfixed, and deeply moved by Sayers’ journey and Roe’s stunning prose. This book is important and necessary and filled with love and hope. I ached when I finished. The best sort of ache. The kind that haunts you. Dear readers everywhere: read this now.” — Jennifer Niven, #1 New York Times bestselling author of All the Bright Places

"Intense and visceral, Dark Room Etiquette is an unforgettable story about trauma, resilience, and hope. A powerful, raw, and ultimately touching survival story.” — Kathleen Glasgow, New York Times bestselling author of Girl in Pieces, You'd Be Home Now, and The Agathas

“I absolutely loved DARK ROOM ETIQUETTE. What a surprising, gripping, jolt-of-adrenaline novel Robin Roe has crafted! DARK ROOM ETIQUETTE is guaranteed to keep you awake at night, and not just because of suspense--you will not be able to stop reading it. What Robin Roe has done with the story of Sayers Wayte is refreshing and remarkable: We get to see the true evolution of his character through iterations that are at times repulsive, heroic, and yet inescapably human. This is quite honestly the best Young Adult fiction I have read in a very long time. Buckle up--this is one wild ride!” — Andrew Smith, author of the Michael L. Printz Honor Book Grasshopper Jungle

“With Dark Room Etiquette, Robin Roe has surely cemented herself as one of the most compelling and honest YA writers of our time. Through searing and haunting prose, this exploration of trauma, identity, and resiliency will take your breath away—but not your light.” — John Corey Whaley, Printz winning author of Where Things Come Back

“Raw, dark, and equal parts funny and poignant, Dark Room Etiquette is about a broken boy fighting against a very broken world. It's a book that is a reminder that even though life may take and take and take, there can be hope on the other side! An impressive and soul-stirring read.” — Jay Coles, author of the critically-acclaimed Tyler Johnson Was Here and Things We Couldn't Say

“DARK ROOM ETIQUETTE is an utterly harrowing, enthralling, and ultimately hopeful exploration of survival and the journey of recovery from trauma. This book will make you think, but more importantly, it will make you feel.”  — Jeff Zentner, Morris Award winning author of The Serpent King

“Haunting, beautiful, and impossible to put down, Dark Room Etiquette is nothing short of a masterpiece. Expertly paced with unforgettable characters and addictive, gorgeous writing, Robin Roe offers up a story that is as deeply thrilling as it is profound.”
Amber Smith, New York Times bestselling author of The Way I Used to Be

"A stunning achievement in psychological terror. I couldn't look away." — Gretchen McNeil, author of Ten and #murdertrending 

“There are no easy answers for Sayers’ issues, but with determination and help from key friends, he finds hope… A deep dive into trauma, with light at the end of the tunnel.” — Kirkus Reviews

"[A] gripping and impossible-to-put-down read." — Booklist

Praise for A List of Cages: “A LIST OF CAGES is painful, devastating, beautiful and brilliant.” (starred review) — Shelf Awareness

“Emotion courses through every sentence of this novel, whether it is love, compassion, or bone-chilling cruelty. A triumphant story about the power of friendship and of truly being seen.” — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“A page-turner with a lot of compassion.” — Booklist (starred review)

“A psychologically taut tale of foster brothers unexpectedly reunited . . . Written with honesty and compassion, this book will resonate with a wide range of readers.” — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Emotional, visceral, and heartbreaking, this novel offers expertly rendered characters and beautiful language. A potent and moving work. Do not pass over this book.” — School Library Journal (starred review)

“This is Roe’s first novel, and it’s impressive. Julian’s and Adam’s perspectives alternate, moments of beauty and humor interspersed with scenes of abuse and violence. While the crimes she portrays are truly vile, their evil can’t stand up to the goodness in her protagonists, and the lesson that every kindness matters.” — The New York Times Book Review

“I love this book with my whole heart. A LIST OF CAGES is beautifully, achingly real. A heartbreaking yet hopeful reminder that kindness and love can change the world.” — Jennifer Niven, New York Times bestselling author of All the Bright Places

“A remarkably gripping and moving tale of a life saved—in more than one way—by the power of friendship.” — Emma Donoghue, author of Room

Product Details
ISBN: 9780063051744
ISBN-10: 0063051745
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: September 5th, 2023
Pages: 512
Language: English