Amber’s Goodreads review of Gone by Michael Grant

Gone (Gone, #1)Gone by Michael Grant

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’m not sure what it is about this book or the writing style, but it didn’t grab me like I’d hoped. I can’t really explain it well, but it felt like it was written either for younger teens only (as opposed to all the YA books I’ve read that appeal to adults equally), as in written DOWN to them, or written BY one of them. That’s not to say that younger writers are bad, it’s just that there’s a stiffness and flatness that goes away with practice. It felt like that to me. It’s like one of those books you read and adore when you’re younger, but as an adult you can barely make it through.

Despite some character development, they still feel a little flat. And honestly, more than all of the “bad kids,” even the truly vicious Drake, I hated Quinn the most. He was irritating, untrustworthy, mean, irrational, and ultimately superfluous. I think he was just there to give Sam a friend so he wasn’t a total loner before the disaster.

People made decisions that didn’t make sense, like Diana. ***SPOILER WARNING*** After pretty much telling us that she doesn’t share Caine’s feelings, being the bully with a conscience, and being smacked around by Caine near the end, she still goes off with him, with the only explanation being “the bad girl ends up with the bad boy, that’s just how it is.” Bullshit, sweetheart. ***END SPOILER***

Not to say the book is boring, little-kiddish, or tame. Hell no, and the preview for the next one is just as gruesome. Kids get maimed, killed, do horrible things to each other (hence the Lord of the Flies comparisons), and there is plenty of violence. And I DO believe kids that age are capable of it: I still remember middle school and how often kids almost DID kill each other, at school, with teachers around (jaded ones who barely did anything to help). Those same kids a few years later were somehow much more mellow. I think that’s why Grant made the cutoff 15, and not higher. The potential for true mayhem is greater.

If a writer with a voice I really liked had written this, I’d be a devotee (and there are writers I enjoy no matter what the subject matter, just for their style. Robin Wassermann and Chuck Palahniuk being a couple of them).

Overall, I may check out the next one, just to see if the voice improves, but I’ll probably look in the library instead of buying it.

3 stars – worth the read, but wouldn’t re-read. Worth borrowing, not purchasing.

View all my reviews


~ by Amber on September 18, 2012.

One Response to “Amber’s Goodreads review of Gone by Michael Grant”

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