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review 2017-08-29 18:51
Gone
Gone - Michael Grant

What would happen if everyone over the age of 15 were to simply vanish, leaving only children to fend for themselves? If that's not interesting enough, throw in some freakish mutating animals, and kids developing crazy x-men type super powers. Grant gives us a world where suddenly kids are on their own trying to survive, food is running out, bullies are using their newly developing powers to take over and suddenly, snakes are growing wings and cats are teleporting. I always enjoy a book that keeps me guessing and tosses out surprises left and right.

 

Sam is the kind of guy you don't really notice until there is an emergency and he becomes the only one who will step up and take charge. He is a kind boy with a good heart. When the story starts he is 14 years old. One of the oldest kids in the FAYZ, as they call it. The problem is, the second you turn 15, you blink out. Disappear. No one knows what exactly happens when you vanish, and time is running out for a lot of the kids.

 

Astrid is very intelligent for her age, some call her Astrid the Genius. She also has a good heart and watches over her little brother. I enjoyed watching the friendship between her and Sam blossom and become something more. 

 

Caine is a 14 year old kid from Coates Academy. He rolls into town with his crew of bullies and essentially takes over. He creates the rules and his posse of troublemakers enforces them. He has a plan and will not back down from a fight.

 

There were many different characters who were likeable on Sam's side of the divide and  many who were just plain rotten on Caine's side. This story heads toward a war between the two sides. As the children begin discovering and developing their super powers, time is running out for both Caine and Sam who are close to their 15th birthdays.

 

I had some issues with many of the decisions the kids were making through the whole book. There was no order, the kids were wasting the food they had available. Instead of preparing for the future, planning ahead, many let good food rot and only ate junk food.

 

They were vandalizing and destroying places, throwing trash out in the streets. I had to keep reminding myself that they were children with no adult supervision. Some of the older children did attempt to create order by caring for the babies, gathering supplies, one kid even stepped up and managed the McDonald's, cooking food for everyone. Those moments were very satisfying to see.

 

I didn't mention much about the super powers that the children develop only because, for me, I found it fun and exciting to discover the powers along with the kids as they were realizing them. Not all of the kids have powers yet. This is only the first book in the series so I'm pretty sure we are going to be seeing new abilities pop up as we go. I think this series is going to be a fun adventure.

 

-Shey

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review 2017-03-03 14:19
She's Fighting For Her Country
Front Lines - Michael Grant

Book Title:  Front Lines

Author:  Michael Grant

Narration:  Therese Plummer & Erin Mallon

Series:  Soldier Girl #1

Genre:  WW II, Alternate History, Older YA

Source:  Audiobook (Library)

 

 

⇝Add to Goodreads⇜

 

 

 

 

 

 

♪♫My Pick For Book Theme Song♫♪

♫I researched many songs of the 40's that were popular during WWII and I felt my theme song should be by a women and also have the right sound for the times and I narrowed it down to this song…I'll Be Seeing You by Billie Holiday --It has the right tone and even if I couldn't find just the right lyric video (for some reason I prefer those, I really wish I was capable of making my own) it fits the best.♫

 

 

 

 

⇝Ratings Breakdown⇜

 

Plot:  3.8/5

Characters:  5/5

The Feels:  4/5

Addictiveness:  4/5

Theme:  4.3/5

Flow:  4/5

Backdrop (World Building):  4/5

Originality:  5/5

Book Cover:  5/5

Narration: 3.5 /5

Ending:  3.5/5  Cliffhanger:  sort of…

 

Will I continue this series?  Ummm…maybe.

 

 

 

⇝My Thoughts⇜

 

An interesting, albeit long, (a little too long and slow at times) sometimes poignant, sometimes sad, and at other times triumphant look on what it would have been like if females were allowed in combat situations in World War II.  As fair warning; there are some graphic depictions in this…it is A war, afterall.

 

Told in three different pov's throughout the book, with the possibility of a fourth, (I think that's the role of the second female narrator, whose identity is never actually revealed).  Each girl is unique and compelling in her own way, and would have been more outstanding if each girl had her own narrator.  Otherwise, the narration was mostly well done. 

 ⇝Sex Factor⇜ No actual explicit sex, this is kept fairly clean in that respect.  There's actually not a lot of romance in this, but there is a little.

 

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review 2016-10-26 14:30
Lord of the Flies Meets The Dome
Gone - Michael Grant

Imagine this - A TV Series in the making of a book series. Yes, Michael Grant's Gone is very similar to any television series you watched today (Lost, Heroes - you get the idea) except its in written format. The reading is quite fast paced with the beginning of the disappearance of adults and anyone at the age of 15 and over. Then comes the powers and the mutation and the epic battle between good and evil. The reluctant hero, the villain you will hate, the love interest, the cowardly friend and the gathering of normals and freaks. Yes, this is how this series began for Gone... and it has a promising start. I was drawn by its cover and its blurb and after reading it (about 550 over pages), I felt like I just complete watching a season of The Walking Dead, without the zombies.



I can't say much about the character development as there is much to explore and to fill in but its easy to spot who is who with so many other characters involve. There is potential, for sure to understand what is going on and how it happened and who is the mysterious 'Darkness' that delves deep into the mine's of a mountain, why is there a barrier over Perdido Beach and why nobody can get out of it. Well, like I said - its very television series material. I have no idea why but I enjoy it so far... at least it beats last night's The Walking Dead Season 7 Episode 1 (damn you Negan!!!). If you haven't pick up Gone or have not even heard of it but you love television series that will give you a good entertainment value, pick up Gone. I will pick up the rest of the books (a total of 6 in the series) to find out the fate of the kids.

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review 2016-10-05 00:00
Front Lines
Front Lines - Michael Grant ~*Full review posted on The Bent Bookworm*~

[b:Front Lines|18743370|Front Lines (Soldier Girl, #1)|Michael Grant|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1434989382s/18743370.jpg|26623929] is an alternate history of WWII. The big switch-up Grant has made is adding females to the draft and using them in ALL roles across the United States military (other countries have not made such an enlightened choice). Other than that change, the book is pretty much true to history – including attitudes towards women, people of color, and people of Asian features. It is at times harsh and heartbreaking, but the main characters of Rio, Frangie, and Rainy are sympathetic and compelling as they grow and adapt to the war and their changing roles in the world. They are not only dealing with the hard reality of being females in a still very patriarchal world, but with their own coming of age, of loss and love on a personal level, and all while being swept along in the grand scheme of the war.
The rituals are different now. It has always been that the men went off and the women wept and waved. There is no blueprint for what is happening now. There is no easy reference point. People don’t know quite how to behave, and it’s worse for the men in the station who are staying behind and feel conspicuous and ashamed.

God knows the MODERN United States Army is having a hard enough time getting a grip on itself with females in the ranks, but add to that the expectations of the generation that would become the idealogical 50s housewife – the book ends in about 1943, so with a couple more years left in the war, I’m very interested to see how this shapes Grant’s version of the United States in the sequel coming next year, [b:Silver Stars|30037861|Silver Stars (Soldier Girl #2)|Michael Grant|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1467049903s/30037861.jpg|49196705].

We spend the most time with Rio, a gutsy farm girl who finds herself in the awkward and unwanted position of being good at her army job while in her heart, just wanting to be a normal girl. Her growth is the most marked of the three main characters and I love her so much.
She [Rio] has just upended her entire life based on a diner conversation with her best friend and an awkward exchange with a boy she barely knows.

The other two girls – because really, they are all still girls when the books starts – are lovable as well, but I felt the most connection with Rio. There is also an unnamed first-person narrator that shows up in the beginning, middle, and end, and has some succinct insights on the war and the women in it.
Will you understand if I tell you that there are times when it is better to feel the pain yourself than to see it and hear it in another?

[a:Michael Grant|1599723|Michael Grant|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1412040452p2/1599723.jpg] has, I think, either been in military service or he has done his research very, very well. His descriptions of Basic Training are spot on. His knowledge of the WWII era is commendable (I went and looked a few things up to see just how accurate he was, if it all, since sometimes historical fiction writers are VERY free with the facts) and he has altered as little as possible in his writing. He’s baldly honest with the racism and sexism of the time, enough to make me squirm in my chair. His descriptions of events are extremely accurate as we follow our heroines through their army journey from civilian to soldier.
image
The one thing that bothered me was the substitute of fug or fugging for fuck or fucking…it would be one thing if the entire book was censored that way, but the words dick (the male appendage, not the name) and goddamn are used without euphemisms sooooo…that was kind of annoying and pointless. And GOD KNOWS it’s every soldier’s right to swear. And grumble.

I loved how honest the portrayal of human nature was, and how emotions come so close to the surface during times of stress. Rio especially is torn between what she knows is waiting for her at home and what is happening in the right here right now.
Strand is there, close to her heart.
Jack is there, close.

As a medic myself, I loved Frangie and her fighting spirit, even in the face of soldiers being SO VERY HORRIBLE to her because of her race and her gender. She just never quits. But she never stops feeling, either, she just learns to put it aside at the time. I can’t wait to see her further development.

Rainy, our little intelligence soldier, felt the least realistic to me. Some of her dialogue exchanges are stilted and left me with raised eyebrows. I mean, I know it was WWII and there were a lot of green soldiers thrown into positions that ordinarily they wouldn’t have been…her storyline just seemed far-fetched at times. Almost like, well, we need this group to be here and we need them to meet up with her so let’s throw in this over-the-top mission that makes no sense to anybody. But maybe I’m just overly skeptical.

Don’t go into this expecting a happily-ever-after, or an exceptionally fast paced story. The first half of the book is fairly slow as we are introduced to all the characters and how they came to be in the army. As for the ever-afters, one – the war isn’t over, so we’re going to have to wait and see how things turn out. For another – it’s war, and people die, even the characters we’ve become attached to. Overall, 4/5 stars.
At night we cry sometimes, and if you think that just applies to the females then you have never been in combat, because everyone cries sooner or later. Everyone cries.
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quote 2016-09-10 15:26
Świat jest taki, jakim go uczynimy. Ale myślę też, że czasami możemy prosić Boga o pomoc, a On pomoże. Czasami mi się wydaje, że siada i mówi: "Jejku, co te głupki teraz wyprawiają. Chyba lepiej trochę im pomóc.
Faza pierwsza: Niepokój - Michael Grant

Taaa... gdyby to było takie proste. 

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