Release Date: 28 Apr 2009
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Post Apocalyptic
Summary: In the blink of an eye. Everyone disappears. GONE.
Except for the young. Teens. Middle schoolers. Toddlers. But not one single adult. No teachers, no cops, no doctors, no parents. Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what's happened.
Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day.
It's a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: On your birthday, you disappear just like everyone else...
Review: Sam can't believe his eyes. One moment he's daydreaming about surfing while his history teacher drones on and on then the next moment, the teacher is gone. Poof. Sam's sure that he's imagining things until he finds out that everyone over the age of fourteen is gone. Sam has much more to worry about than missing adults and older siblings though, he's concerned that he might be the cause due to inexplicable mutation he's undergoing and what happens when he turns fifteen in less than two weeks. Bullies have taken over and he knows that if anyone found out or even suspected what he was capable of doing, they would kill him because he wouldn't be the first death or the last.
Gone was nothing short of an amazing, adrenaline fueled read. There wasn't a single moment of downtime for the characters I came to love. Every character, even the minor ones who occasionally got their chance to tell the story (loved that!), was a unique individual with their own flaws and problems. I knew all of the characters like they were kids I'd gone to school with. I've never read a book where I knew the thoughts, motivations, feelings of so many characters. I also loved that every one of them had realistic reactions to the crisis yet they all reacted differently.
Gone was constantly surprising me in all aspects. It would have taken a psychic to be able to guess what would happen in this book. I loved being taken on this ride and not knowing how it would end or what would happen along the way.
I'll probably sounded disturbed when I say this but I loved the violence in this book. I think the violence is what will make or break Gone for you. If you have a weak stomach or want sunshine and rainbows, this read is not for you! Imagine having scenes of limbs being sawed off or a description of gangrene setting in because tissue is dead. Yeah, they both happen and I was cringing the whole time but I couldn't get enough. Grant wasn't afraid to force the reader to see the reality of a situation like this, and I couldn't love him more for it.
I only had two minor complaints and they're personal issues for me that you may actually like or at least not mind. The dorky cool slang made me roll my eyes every time I encountered it. It didn't add to the believability that these were kids who talked like kids because I often found myself thinking 'who in their right mind would say that?!' Slang was mostly confined to the beginning of the book though. The religious talk and allusions also bugged me. This is a YA/MG/children's lit pet peeve of mine. I don't like adults who foist their religious beliefs onto impressionable children. Grant isn't doing that in Gone but it still managed to push my buttons a little bit.
Gone was a better roller coaster ride than I could ever hoped or asked for. I've already got Hunger ready to read and I hope my fingernails survive the saga.
Quotes & Thoughts as I Read:
- Fear could be dangerous. Fear could get people hurt. And there was nothing but fear running crazy through the school. Life in Perdido Beach had changed. Something big and terrible had happened. Sam hoped he was not the cause. Not the cause? That means he's done something. I'm so intrigued! I've gotta say that I hate the slang used thus far. Brah and little dude aren't cool, they just make you sound stupid.
- He was scared. And he was mad, too. Where were the people who were supposed to do this? Where were the adults? Why was this up to him? He was just a kid. And why hadn't anyone else been crazy enough, stupid enough to rush into a burning building. It's every kid's fantasy to wish parents, older siblings, and adult away. The realistic troubles Sam is facing are very interesting. Glad my family didn't disappear when I wished my hardest that they would ;)
- “T'sup, Cookie,” Sam called out as they drew within twenty yards. “T-sup, Sam?” Cookie replied. What the hell is 't'sup'?! Do kids actually talk like that?! I was 19 when this was written and unless I'm mistaken, Maine kids must be way cooler (for a first) than wherever Grant is getting his hip knowledge base from.
- Lana took several deep breaths, shaky, fighting the upsurge of terror. She'd heard of gangrene. It was what happened when flesh died or circulation was cut off. Her arm was dying. The smell was the odor of rotting human flesh. First off, ew gross. But secondly I love that Grant is getting into the grit and ugliness. Maybe I'm reading the wrong YA books, but I haven't seen many that do this.
- Sooner or later, C or one of the others will do something serious. Someone will get hurt. Just like S with T. Stop keeping me in suspense! I'm so intrigued that I'll probably get paper cuts from whipping through pages.
- And the FAYZ itself-everyone called it that now-was five days old. Five days with no adults. Five days without mothers, fathers, brig brothers and sisters, teachers, police officers, store clerks, pediatricians, clergy, dentists. Five days without television, internet, or phones. Guess which one of those practically gives me hives just thinking about. I will give you a hint: you are using it to view this quote/thought.
- “I can't kiss you with your little brother watching,” he said. Astrid stepped back, took Little Pete by the shoulders, and turned him so he was facing away. “How about now?” Oh, yay! A little romance to break up all of the violence. I've gotta say that the more I read of this book, the more I want.