Tomorrow Home

Samples of the Writing

The Books

The Characters

Things to Explore


Find the books


About this site


This website is dedicated to the memory of Jessica Lincoln Smith, a John Marsden fan.
Lost tragically at 26, but never to be forgotten.

An Exploration of "Tomorrow, When The War Began" and its sequels, by John Marsden

This site is dedicated to the "Tomorrow" Series by John Marsden, which follows the lives of a group of Australian Teenagers as they struggle to respond to the surprise invasion and conquest of their country.

Set in the current day, this series (see review) is comparised of seven books "Tomorrow, When The War Began", "The Dead of the Night", "The Third Day, The Frost", "Darkness, Be My Friend", "Burning For Revenge", "The Night is for Hunting" and "The Other Side of Dawn".

Together they form a modern classic and has been a runaway success. They were written to be accessable to teenagers, but John Marsden does not talk down to his audience and adult readers will find a lot to enjoy and appreciate here as well.

Over a million copies of these books have been sold and "Tomorrow, When The War Began" has been translated German (as "Morgen War Krieg"), Spanish (as "Mañana, cuando empiece la guerra"), Danish (as "I morgen da brod ud"), Dutch (as "Mogen toen de oorlog begon", Italian (as "La guerra che verrà"), Swedish (as "I morgon nar kriget kom") and French (as "Apocalypse")

So what's so special about them? Simply put, these are the best "action/adventure" novels that I have ever read, and I have read a quite a few. It is not so much the action, though John Marsden writes tense action as well as anyone, but rather the very human and believable characters. The main characters in these books are not you typical action heroes, instead they are well drawn, perfectly ordinary people who have been dropped into a nightmare situation. Their struggle to cope with a world gone mad form the heart and soul of these novels. The writing sucks you in and as the novels progress, it is hard not to imagine yourself in their situation and wonder how you would cope.

If you have not read the series and have ended up here by accident, take a look at the review of the series, check out the samples of the writing, and if your fancy is tickled, jump over to find the books, grab a copy of "Tomorrow, When the War Began" and set off on a journey to remember. Of course, feel free to take a wander around this website as well, just be warned that many pages reveal significant elements of the plot. If that bothers you, look out for the red warning messages near the top of (most) such pages.

If you are a fan, then the whole of this site is for you. Navigation is via the bar on the left, clicking on a heading will expand it and clicking on "Tomorrow Home" will always being you back here.

Throughout this site, quotes are used extensively to illustrate points. In all cases these quotes are used with permission.

If anyone wants to link to this site, or sub-pages in it, please feel free. I suggest avoiding the quotes pages at present as they are a being consolidated, but the other pages should not be changing address.

The site breaks down into the following sections:

Samples of the Writing
These are picked to show visitors what they can expect to find in the series and illustrate John Marsden's writing style, but I have also included some that show just how far the characters move mentally in the space of these seven books, and a few of my favorate quotes covering life on the farm, the Australian Bush and the Ellie making a fool of herself with a wombat.

The Books
This link takes you to the high level review of the series, but also opens up the navigation bar to give access to a commentary on each individual book in the series. Most of these commentaries do blow the plot of the relevent book so if this bothers you, please be careful about what you read.

The Characters
The heart and soul of the Tomorrow Series are the characters, their humanity, how they react to what is happening to them, how they develop over the course of the seven books. This link opens up the section with character profiles and reviews of each of the eight main characters in the Tomorrow series; Ellie Linton, Homer Yannos, Fi (Fiona) Maxwell, Kevin Holmes, Robyn Mathers, Chris Lang, Corrie Mackenzie and, last but certainly not least, Lee.

As I wrote these profiles and searched for quotes to support my conclusions I found quite regularly that I had to change my opinion of the character considerably, that the quotes simply did not support my first cut impressions. This is particularly true of Fi, but also of Lee, both of whom turn out to be much more interesting than I supposed when I started on them.

This section uses quotes very extensively to support the points it makes about the characters, so if you are curious about why I say something, click on the appropriate link to jump to the quotes that the statement is based on..

Of course, if you disagree with something I have to say, I would love to hear from you. You can use the link found at the bottom of each page (including this one) to send me a email.

Things to Explore
A bit of everything, from external links to John Marsden's Biography and the transcript of a TV program the ABC made on him in 2002, to the explosive characteristics of jet fuel and petrol, how much natual gas do you need to blow up a house, the problems with mounting a full on invasion of Australia and everything in between.
For the true fan. Continuity problems in the Tomorrow Series. Teleporting rifles, magic boots, scenes that refer to future events. Small beer for a series that covers 2,000 pages, but I enjoyed writing them down and maybe, someday, someone will enjoy reading them.

Find the Books
John Marsden's books are often hard to find outside of Australia. This page has some help for those in the US, the UK and France (hopefully more to follow, if you have information, please send it though) and provides links to each of his books that you can use to purchase them from a internet bookstore located in Australia.

I have no association of any kind with the stores linked to, other than as an occassional customer. This page is provided simply as a way of helping people get access to John Marsden's body of work (not just the "Tomorrow" series)

There are some good sites out there on the "Tomorrow" series and this page provides links to my favorites. If you find (or have built) one that you think should be included, please drop me a line. (see the link at the bottom of the page)
About this site
Why this site exists

Well there you have it. Congratulations on reaching the end of this rather long page. I hope you enjoy the rest of your stay and that this website helps you appreciate a fine piece of work, John Marsden's "Tomorrow" Series.


Richard Simpson
Sydney, Australia

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