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Gone Special Edition Paperback – March 5, 2013

553 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 7 Up—"One minute the teacher was talking about the Civil War. And the next minute he was gone." Just vanished—along with everyone else over the age of 13 in a 20-mile radius around Perdido Beach, CA. The children left behind find themselves battling hunger, fear, and one another in a novel strongly reminiscent of William Golding's Lord of the Flies. Things go from bad to worse when some of the children begin exhibiting strange powers, animals show signs of freakish mutations, and people disappear as soon as they turn 14. Though an excellent premise for a novel, Gone suffers from a couple of problems. First, it is just too long. After opening with a bang, the initial 200 or so pages limp along before the action begins to really pick up. Secondly, based on the themes of violence, death, and implied sexual intimidation, this is clearly written for an older teen audience who may not appreciate the fact that no one in the book is older than 13. In spite of its faults, Gone is a gripping and gritty read with enough creepy gruesomeness to satisfy readers who have a taste for the macabre. Give this one to the readers who aren't quite ready for Stephen King or Dean Koontz.—Jane Henriksen Baird, Anchorage Public Library, AK
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* It’s a scenario that every kid has dreamed about: adults suddenly disappear, and kids have free reign. In this case, though, it’s everyone 14 and older who disappears, and the harsh reality of such unreal circumstances isn’t a joyride after all. A girl driving with her grandfather plunges into a horrific car wreck; gas burners left on ignite a home with a young child trapped inside; food and medical supplies dwindle; and malicious youths take over as the remaining children attempt to set up some form of workable society. Even stranger than the disappearance of much of humanity, though, are the bizarre, sometimes terrifying powers that some of the kids are developing, not to mention the rapidly mutating animals or the impenetrable wall 20 miles in diameter that encircles them. This intense, marvelously plotted, paced, and characterized story will immediately garner comparisons to Lord of the Flies, or even the long-playing world shifts of Stephen King, with just a dash of X-Men for good measure. A potent mix of action and thoughtfulness—centered around good and evil, courage and cowardice—renders this a tour-de-force that will leave readers dazed, disturbed, and utterly breathless. Grant’s novel is presumably the first in a series, and while many will want to scream when they find out the end is not the end, they’ll be glad there’s more in store. Grades 6-9. --Ian Chipman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Gone
  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: KTegenBks; Revised edition (March 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062236911
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062236913
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.3 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (553 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #862,870 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Michael Grant was born in a manger.

Okay, no he wasn't. And that was a stupid thing to say. There was no manger. It was a log cabin. A log cabin in Los Angeles.

Or possibly a trailer.

And then while defending his country (technically it was his father, he was just an Army brat,) he moved all over the country and to France and became the incredibly well-educated, well-rounded, well-adjusted . . .

Yeah, okay that last part's a lie, too. The moving everywhere thing is true. But the sad reality is that Michael's a rootless, disconnected, indifferently-educated, sullen, obnoxious, disaffected misanthrope. With no hair. I mean seriously: look at the man's head. Do you see hair? No.

Where was I? I mean he.

Michael Grant is married to Katherine (K.A.) Applegate. They've been together for 30 years. Which doesn't say much for Katherine's judgment does it? And they've been writing for 20 years, sometimes as partners -- BOYFRIENDS/GIRLFRIENDS, ANIMORPHS, EVERWORLD -- and sometimes on their own.

Michael and Katherine have two kids, Jake 12 and Julia 9. (Feet tall. Get it? 12 feet tall? Ah hah hah. Yeah, okay: not funny.) Anyway, the point is that Michael Grant is the author or co-author of 150 books. Yeah: 150. Most recently the critically-acclaimed GONE and HUNGER.

No, really: critically-acclaimed by VOYA, Booklist, School Library Journal, KLIATT and Publishers Weekly. And best of all by Stephen Freaking KIng himself! Oh, yeah: THE Stephen King. Of course Kirkus dumped on him, but Michael would like to make it clear that Kirkus is in no way a collection of illiterate halfwits. No! Never would Michael say such a thing.

Michael can be reached on Twitter @theFAYZ, or on Facebook as "authorMichaelGrant."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

118 of 135 people found the following review helpful By Geoff Arnold VINE VOICE on July 18, 2008
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"The Lord of the Flies" was one of the most unsettling books that I read at school (over 45 years ago!). It combined the horrifying realization of the Milgram experiments - that decent, ordinary people could behave in unspeakable ways with the minimum of a contextual shift - with an entirely believable set of characters in an all-too-plausible situation. I could identify with them, see friends (and rivals) around me who would react as Golding's creations had done. And the basic plot seemed wholly original: it wasn't one of the classic patterns that writer after writer had taken a crack at.

So how would you update it for the 21st century? How do you achieve the sudden enforced isolation of a group in an alien environment? In an era of GPS and satellite communications, it's hard to disappear, impossible to isolate. "The Truman Show" suggested a way that might work for one person, and "Gone" borrows some ideas from this world-in-a-bubble, but as the idiom goes "that doesn't scale". How about the characters - and the audience? And who is the audience, anyway? Golding wrote his masterpiece as an allegory for all ages, but that's a rare achievement.

Michael Grant decides to focus on the "young adult" audience, which means that the book has to compete in a world of "Buffy", reality TV, and videogames. In keeping with the zeigeist, the isolation of the young protagonists is achieved through a science fiction device: a "rapture of the adults". And the games begin.

OK, so I'm not the target audience of this book, but no matter. If adults can cross over to "Harry Potter", I don't see why I can't enjoy "Gone". And I did. Mostly. The first half of the book is really strong: some great scenes that Golding would have enjoyed.
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54 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Rachael Stein VINE VOICE on June 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Welcome to the FAYZ, short for Fallout Alley Youth Zone. There's no one who's over the age of fourteen; they've all "poofed," they're just gone. But the strangeness only starts there. There's a circular wall, or maybe dome, surrounding the land within a ten-mile radius from the nuclear plant. The wall is impenetrable and burns you if you touch it. There are strange mutations in the animals, such as seagulls with talons, winged snakes, and talking coyotes. Some kids have also developed strange powers. The rules of the world are changing, and Sam is running out of time before he turns fourteen and is bound to poof.

The kids from Coates Academy come down to the town of Perdido Beach, and one of them, named Caine, basically takes over. He acts as if he's benevolent, but people are dying, and it's because his sheriff and Captain Orc's little gang of bullies keep beating people up who break the rules imposed on them by Caine. And while some of these rules are actually valid, others prevent people from gaining any power to oppose Caine.

Sam, Quinn, Edilio, Astrid, and Little Pete find themselves thrown together for survival. Sam knows that something is off about Caine, and he also has a power to shoot fire from his hands. They are constantly running from Caine or one of his allies. They eventually meet a girl Lana, who is a healer, and discover that Little Pete has special abilities of his own. When they save a bunch of kids with power from Caine, who had them imprisoned with their hands cemented in blocks, the kids join their movement to take Caine down. The struggle escalates, and all their lives are at stake.

When I first read the summary for this book, I was extremely intrigued. This new world is almost like a parallel universe.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER on October 30, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Gone / 9780061909641

Where do I start with this review? I wanted so badly to love this book, but halfway through I told my husband, "I love the plot, but I can't stand the characters." Still, I was perfectly prepared to give this book a give 4- or 5-star recommendation... until the last 20 pages. Light spoilers ahead.

The plot is everything you could want from a dystopian sci-fi YA novel. On the first page, everyone in town over the age of 14 disappears completely, and it's immediately up to the remaining kids to figure out how to survive in a world that becomes increasingly creepy. The children are obviously ill-prepared to take care of, say, all the abandoned babies in town, and the result is dark, gritty, and satisfyingly creepy. In addition to all this, the town is also enclosed in a mystical soap bubble, and the town threatens to be overrun by talking coyotes and flying rattlesnakes. Seriously, this is an awesome plot.

But the characters...! This book feels like it was written by taking a bunch of recent popular YA books and trying to Frankenstein the characters together out of various YA tropes. There's Sam "Harry Potter" Everyman, a nice, strong, solid, dependable, totally average guy with a propensity towards heroics and to whom everyone instinctively looks up. There's Astrid "Percy Jackson" Sexy-Smart, whose job is to provide exposition and romantic angst and who is literally referred to in-text as both a "Genius" and a "Barbie" doll. (Astrid, being female, will not be allowed to do anything useful in the novel that doesn't entail snogging the protagonist or looking after small children.) And, of course, there's the ineffectual Sidekick Guy who spends the whole novel sulking because he's not as cool as his protagonist buddy.
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