Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Review: Gated by Amy Christine Parker

Title:  Gated 
Author: Amy Christine Parker
Random House Books for Young Readers
Publishing Date:  August 6th 2013

Pages: 352
Genre:  YA Realistic Fiction 
Source: ARC


In Mandrodage Meadows, life seems perfect. The members of this isolated suburban community have thrived under Pioneer, the charismatic leader who saved them from their sad, damaged lives. Lyla Hamilton and her parents are original members of the flock. They moved here following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, looking to escape the evil in the world. Now seventeen, Lyla knows certain facts are not to be questioned:

Pioneer is her leader.

Will is her Intended.

The end of the world is near.

Like Noah before him, Pioneer has been told of the imminent destruction of humanity. He says his chosen must arm themselves to fight off the unchosen people, who will surely seek refuge in the compound's underground fortress--the Silo.

Lyla loves her family and friends, but given the choice, she prefers painting to target practice. And lately she'd rather think about a certain boy outside the compound than plan for married life in the Silo with Will. But with the end of days drawing near, she will have to pick up a gun, take a side, and let everyone know where she stands.

I was so excited when I read the synopsis of this book. I haven’t read any books like this one and it truly intrigued me. I did a happy dance in my living room the day I received the ARC in the mail and it was hard waiting til its turn to read the book. This was one of my favorite reads this year. The writing was amazing and the main character was very compelling . The story was extoridanary and creepy and everything plus more that I expected it to be.

Lyla lives in a compound, the leader Pioneer has predicted the end of the world and since she can remember they have been planning for the end. She believes she has a pretty comfy life… lots of room to be free, a nice horse that she bonded with, and her intended was her best friend. She didn’t think she could want for anything more and never gave much thought to the towns outside her gated community.. One day she meets a boy from the outside and everything she believed slowly comes crashing down.

I was really intriqued by the synopsis of this book when I realized it was about living inside a compound. Something I have heard so much about from the news and had many discussion about with my friends. I always wondered how people believe what they are told so easily and so intensely that they give up a normal life and live completely different then the rest of the world. Gated gives a great in depth story that gave me what I always longed for… understanding.

The book was so wonderfully written that I didn’t feel the book was about a cult and just completely immersed myself into Lyla’s world. It ws so easly to get confused… is the end of the world really coming oh no its not this man is just crazy. It was easy to see why everyone believed the character Pioneer and at the same time I hated him. I started to understand how someone could fall into this trap. The story is told from Lyla’s point of view and there are flashbacks that explain how her family came to live in the community, how they were in a very vunerable state and Pioneer was able to prey on them and use their sorrow and their lack of hope to win them over. If you ever wondered how it happens and what it is like inside the gates, read Gated. Its not a true story but I am sure its pretty darn close to what actually happens.

There were only two characters that I felt I was albe to really get to know, Lyla and Pioneer. There were others in the story but really the story is about Lyla and Pioneer. Lyla was naturally curious and she was a very peaceful character. She was sweet and naïve and really confused. At the beginning she believed everything Pioneer said to be true and everything he did was for the good of the community. She wanted to find comfort in the end as he did, the kind of comfort living in the community gave her. After a series of horrible events and a certain boy she comes to know the truth and even after finding out the truth she still remained confused for a while. She had a really hard time breaking free from Pioneer’s clutches. It was amazing to watch her grow, become strong, and fight. I loved her character. ‘

Pioneer was such a good villain. He was smooth, manipulating, and fierce… oh and don’t forget about nuts. I truly believed he believed everything that came out of his own mouth. He was so disturbed he was a nightmare waiting to happen. I loved hating him in this book. The only think I could have asked for was his story. I wanted to know how he ended up where he did and what made him so delusional. The book never gets there. That kind of made me sad but the rest of the book totally makes up for it.

The book was very fast paced not a boring or slow spot in the entire story and I really just couldn’t put it down. I finished it in one day and it only took me that long because life got in the way. I would have finished it in one setting if given the chance. Life changing book for me…. ok maybe not life changing but I think any other book read in the future will have a hard time comparing for quite a while.

Loved it Loved it Loved it. It was more than I ever expected and I would read it again and again. Awesome book.

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