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The Gathering (Darkness Rising, Book 1) Hardcover – April 12, 2011
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“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.
Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
When my daughter picked up The Gathering immediately afterward, I didn't jump into the simultaneous reading right away (I was reading something else). Then she came to me and said "This book is more grown up mom. There's making out, and the girl had her drink drugged." Needless to say, I grabbed my own copy immediately so I could see what was up.
Again, Armstrong takes teen issues head on, portraying realistic social interactions, both good and bad, responsible and irresponsible. The main character has a good head on her shoulders, and departing from stereotypical YA formula, she has a good relationship with her parents. Who are both alive. And pretty awesome. She is open in talking (even joking) with them about dating and sex, and it's clear she's educated comprehensively about sex.
The teens in this book do normal teen things -- make out, sometimes without all clothes on. There are illusions to making out and having sex in back seats of cars. Some of them drink beer, some of them don't. They all make wise and unwise choices, can be kind and unkind to each other, can be both responsible and irresponsible. My daughter and I had lots of great open conversations about how she'll have similar choices in the future, what our values are, what's safe and not safe. We talked about the actual risk of having a drink drugged, why that would happen, and how to potentially prevent it.Read more ›
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.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Maya is totally not a normal teen in a totally not normal town - but even though those two are fairly obvious, no one even bats an eye. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Crystal Starr Light
I loved this book. Maya and Daniel are amazing characters. I was hooked after the first chapter. 5 starsPublished 3 months ago by christine bishop
I enjoyed reading about Maya in this secluded Canadian research town. She has a good family and good friends. The characters are interesting. Read morePublished 3 months ago by lmills10
The first in a new teen trilogy. Strong female character is an excellent role model. Minor romance plot and lots of twisty mystery plots. Read morePublished 3 months ago by S. Rayball
This book showed me that it doesn't matter what you look like, everyone has a right to be saved. As you read the book you see Maya, a 16 year old girl, get through life after... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Billi
Wow. So exhilarating and fast paced with characters that become your family and friends. Each moment reading is like riding the biggest roller coaster in the world. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Jessica