Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Book Review - Gone (Gone #1) by Michael Grant

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...

I had actually known about this book for quite some time but the blurb had never really interested me and I had read quite a few comments about how this book was not really worth it so I didn't bother to pick it up and I never would have if not for my sister deciding to buy the entire series and dumping the books on me.

The story had a very "Lord of the Flies" feel to it, the whole "no adults, kids ruling" situation. It's not fair to compare this novel with a literary classic written by a genius but Gone does have similar aspects. I think Michael Grant captured the circumstance very well. I thought his depiction of what would happen in a kids only world was very accurate and slightly disturbing.

It's a bit scary to see how plight could force children to grow up fast and make decisions that not even adults would have to make under normal conditions. I especially enjoyed the "mutations" aspect of the story, being a sci-fi fan though maybe I'm a bit biased with this. The overall story was quite enjoyable however I felt like the story was very dragged out and a lot of pages were quite unnecessary and just bored me. I wish it were a bit more fast-paced and interesting.

I also felt like the "point of views" were a very good idea but unfortunately it was unevenly distributed between characters and I was flipping pages for the wrong reasons - not that I was so into the book I had to finish it, but more like I really just wanted to skip most of the fillers and get to the good parts.

I found that I really liked most of the characters. They had a very genuine feel about them, they were real kids just trying to survive under harsh surroundings. It was even easy to sympathize with the bullies at one point. It did cringe quite a bit during the book mostly because I still like to think of kids as pure and innocent so it did not feel right when I read about kids doing horrible things to each other with evil intentions of power, grandeur and hate.

Overall, I liked the book but I had to strain to finish reading it and even though it has a sequel, a lot of things were left unexplained. I will, read the sequel though because I need to know what happens to the bad guys (yes, they are my favorite characters) and hopefully see if they will change.