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The Gathering Paperback – April 10, 2012

4.1 out of 5 stars 262 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Darkness Rising Series

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Comfortably mixing science, myth, and mystery, Armstrong creates a vivid world highlighted by appealing characters. Fans and newcomers alike will be eager for more after Armstrong’s story drives to its pulse-pounding climax. ” (Publishers Weekly)

“Armstrong begins her new series with a swift-paced start, creating memorable characters and interesting premises.” (Booklist)

About the Author

When librarians finally granted Kelley Armstrong an adult card, she made straight for the epic fantasy and horror shelves. She spent the rest of her childhood and teen years happily roaming fantastical and terrible worlds, and vowed that someday she'd write a story combining swords, sorcery, and the ravenous undead. That story began with the New York Times bestselling Sea of Shadows and continues with Empire of Night.

Armstrong's first works for teens were the New York Times bestselling Darkest Powers and Darkness Rising trilogies. She lives in rural Ontario with her husband, three children, and far too many pets.

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Product Details

  • Series: Darkness Rising (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (April 10, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061797030
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061797033
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (262 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #159,992 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm married with three kids and live in rural Ontario, Canada. After graduating with a degree in psychology, I switched gears and studied computer programming. Currently, I'm a full-time writer and parent. Could I make this section any more dull? Probably not.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was a little put off when I saw some of the reviews for this newest YA entry by Kelley Armstrong. I've been a fan of the Otherworld series, and I thoroughly enjoyed her first YA trilogy, so I was very excited to see this new book come out. That said, I will admit there have been books in the Otherworld series that didn't quite grab me; I'm not one of those fans who loves everything a favorite author produces. With all that in mind, I bought The Gathering for my Kindle, and set to read with a little trepidation. But I was pleasantly surprised!

If you've read Ms. Armstrong's other books, particularly her YA series, you already know the basic premise: teenage girl, Maya, thinks she's just a normal teenager living in a really small town created by the local research center for its employees and their families, but it turns out she's not 'normal' at all. Sure, she can heal animals a little to well, and local cougars seem to have taken an odd liking to her, but Maya hasn't yet figured out that those things mean anything special. After her best friend, who happens to be captain of the school swim team, mysteriously drowns, there are hints that perhaps Serena's death wasn't the accident it seemed. Serena's ex-boyfriend Daniel is Maya's new best friend, but there doesn't seem to be anything romantic developing there - yet. Enter new kid in town, bad boy Rafe, and Maya's (of course) inexplicable attraction to him. Turns out Rafe knows a lot about Maya that he's not telling, at least at first.

This is pretty standard for most YA novels these days. And for those who have read the previous trilogy, we already know the research facility isn't what it seems, and that people who have "Dr." in front of their name are not to be trusted.
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Format: Hardcover
***May contain spoilers***

I must preface by saying that I love Kelley Armstrong, she is one of my most favourite authors of all time. There isn't anything of hers that I have read before that I haven't enjoyed, from her "Darkest Powers" trilogy to her "Women of the Otherworld" series. But while I did enjoy this book I don't know if I enjoyed it quite as much as her others books, especially her "Darkest Powers" trilogy.

I think that Derek and Simon (from the "Darkest Powers" trilogy) made more of an impact on me than this book's Daniel and Rafe did, however Maya totally made a bigger impact upon me than Chloe did (I found Chloe to be really dependent upon the boys in the first two books of the trilogy and somewhat of a quiet character). But Maya? Yeah, the girl had balls. She wasn't afraid to tell it like it was and she had so many great one liners throughout the book, there were so many times I found myself bursting out laughing at what came out of her mouth, for instance this little conversation:

Maya: "Have you met the tattoo artist? Is he hot?"
Mom: "He's a she."
Maya: "Is she hot? Cause I'm still young, you know. My sexual identity isn't fully formed." (pg. 37)

I think that what really frustrated me about this book was that because it is the first book in the trilogy I assumed that we would learn lots about Project Phoenix, like we did about Project Genesis in the first book of the "Darkest Powers" trilogy, "The Summoning", but we really don't. Whatsoever.
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Format: Hardcover
Sounds good, doesn't it? And it's by Kelley Armstrong, so it must be really good, right? Sadly, no. I received an ARC of this book and was very excited to read it. I had to force myself to finish the book I was already reading before diving into The Gathering. As it turns out, I could have waited. This book was so disappointing. I am a huge fan of Kelley Armstrong's work, so I was expecting a heck of a story. Such was not the case.

I try to find something good to say about every book I read, even when I am not bowled over by it. I am having significant trouble finding anything I liked about this book. I guess I did like Maya's supernatural ability, which is not one Armstrong has used before, that I can remember.

What didn't I like? For starters, the book was very slow moving. I was on page 100 still waiting for something to happen. I felt like there was too much build-up, too much detail, and not enough action. I was growing bored...very, very bored. By the time the action did pick up, I was so irritated with this book that it didn't much matter.

I did not like Maya. Not liking the protagonist in a book like this generally spells disaster for liking the book as a whole. I found Maya to be boring, uppity, snarky (not in a good way), and very bland compared to other Armstrong characters. Maya's friend Daniel was OK, but the description of the novel plays it off like he has a supernatural ability, which I did not pick up on at all in the book. The characters didn't stand out for me. They weren't special or endearing, or relate-able.

The plot was very thin. That is a huge part of why the novel moved so slowly. The novel lacked substance and was made up for in tons of detail.

Overall, I did not enjoy this book.
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