Author: Amy Christine Parker
Publisher: Random House Canada
Publication date: August 6, 2013
Genre(s): Young Adult (Cult/thriller)
Gated gives you a front row seat, or more like the actual insider experience of what it is like to grow up and live in a cult. Initially when I started reading Gated, I just assumed that it is a dystopian book, however it really isn't. The rest of the world, outside Lyla's little community is living its life just like we currently are. However for Lyla, her family, and 20 other families, they live in a closed off, gated community run by Pioneer, the Brethren's prophet (Think psychotic cult leader using religion to brainwash these people). Before, whenever I hear stories about cults and what they do, I always wonder how blind the followers are.. can't they use logic and just SEE that how they're living is just all kinds of crazy? But being put in Lyla's shows.. and hearing what Pioneer says and how he manipulates them, I really can't blame these cult followers anymore.
The synopsis says so much… but some of it is too much while other things are a bit misleading. I spent more than half of the novel waiting for Lyla to realize that Pioneer is a psycho.. but what I did spend almost half of the novel on is her obsessing over the Sherif's kid who came with his father in the community and went on a quick tour that Lyla got stuck showing. I get that this is the first time she talks to an Outsider, but this felt too insta-love-ish.. He wanted to meet her again, she says no, then tells him she's going to be at Walmart next saturday (once in a couple of months or years, a family goes to buy all the supplies).. then she spends the rest of the novel obsessing over him. I just disliked the direction the book took and wished it was more fast paced and spent more time after she figured out Pioneer doped them all.
Still, towards the end you do get to witness some action and see Pioneer for who he really is.. and he is one scary sociopath. I personally didn't care much for the characters, not even Lyla, but I did like one person and that is Lyla's best friend, Marie. I wished we got more scenes with her. I would recommend this novel to people who have always wondered about cults. While some parts were boring and I wished the book picked up the pace quicker, I still enjoyed it overall.
Author: Michelle Rowen
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication date: October 1st, 2013
Genre(s): Young Adult (Dystopian)
Kira Jordan is a homeless orphan who has survived in the world using her cunning wits and her low level psi, giving her the power to sense people's feelings, but only with skin-to-skin contact. Rogan is a notorious criminal who had gotten out of Juvenile Detention a couple of days before they met. Now, they have both been thrown into a game where you need to survive, time is your enemy, and a clock is always ticking. Having to stay within 90 feet of each other (or both Kira and Rogan's head will explode), Kira and Rogan must find a way to beat each level of a horrible underground game, all with crowds of rich people watching their every move on a private T.V channel. But Rogan knows more about these games then he will let on, and his secrets may lead to a horrible truth...........
This. Book. Is. AMAZEBEANS!!!! I honestly would be hard pressed to find a book like this one (if you're thinking Hunger Games right now, I totally understand, as there are some similarities, I know). I fell in love with Kira and Rogan. Kira is a very sarcastic and witty girl, and sarcasm is my best subject. I love being sarcastic!
The ending was sooooo gooooood!!!! It was so sweetly tied up, and I liked the ending theme (I can't tell you what it was, but it has to do with a certain boy and a certain girl). Countdown is written in first person, in Kira's POV, which makes this book like 10000 times better to me. A great read for teen ages 13+.