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on 29 January 2014
After all of the events that have happened in the FAYZ, `Light' draws this to a fast-paced and exciting conclusion. Following on from the aftermath of Gaia and the dome turning transparent, the book is a literal countdown as the kids feel that the end is near.

Grant keeps to the same formula as his previous novels in which there is still disturbing violence that the kids inflict on each other. But, after having spent a year in this prison, the kids appear to have learned from their experiences: become more resolute in their ambitions and have grown to show compassion to others when it is needed.

I really feared that this book would just finish with the barrier coming down and there being no explanation about what happened next. With everything that had happened in the FAYZ and Sam's constant worry about being judged by the outside world for his actions, I was pleased that Grant dedicated a lot of time explaining the aftermath. I took great pleasure in learning about how the kids had adapted and what the consequences were to outsiders viewing the violence in the FAYZ and I think this helped conclude the series quite nicely. Indeed, even the final note from the author was quite touching as I realised that the FAYZ was finally over and the series completed.

When I first starting reading this series, I was dubious how far the writer could go with keeping the story fresh and exciting. True, it does have its moments but I do think that, looking back, accepting events as they happened was just part of the FAYZ and an important way to help you enjoy the story. If you have read the other books in the series then it would be wrong not to read the final instalment. However, if you are not sure about the `Gone' books, then I I would recommend them as a solid read and one that you could easily enjoy.
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on 18 December 2014
Plague is the fourth book in the Gone Series.

Wow, this series just keeps getting better and better. In Plague kids are trapped in a dome; it’s a world without adults, and normal has crashed as burned… as the cover states. It’s hard times in the FAYZ (Fallout Alley Youth Zone). A disease is spreading which causes kids to to literally cough up their lungs, with Healer Lana powerless to do anything. Little Pete has caught the disease, meaning he’s out of action and in his usual own world. Does this make him more vulnerable to the darkness?

Bugs are eating kids from the inside out and are impervious to Sam’s destructive light. Unkillable psychopath Drake/Brittney is still on the loose and up to no good. Sam & Astrid are arguing, while they try to deal with the problems.

Plague is fast paced, uses clear description, characters reflections and action to move the story along, as all the previous books in the series have. But what makes this the best book of the series (I’ve read so far) is that it takes characters to much darker places. It does this by sticking them between a rock and a hard place, giving them difficult choices.

So much happens in this book, it is an essential read in the Gone Series. That said it does focus more on character development to the detriment of the overarching plot. To give you an idea of how much actually happens, without giving too many spoilers away, here are just some of the main events: Lana connects with someone, Caine gets it on with Diana, Caine helps to save Perdido Beach, Albert is nearly murdered, Jack grows – becoming more of an action man, the Human Crew are disbanded, Astrid commits the biggest sin in her mind as a Christian, Orc the useless drunk seeks redemption and much much more.

Plague ends with Sam taking some of the kids to a lake and Caine becoming self-appointed King of the kids who choose to stay in Perdido Beach. Albert, Lana and Howard are allowed to go between the Lake and Perdido Beach as they wish. Plague has a few interesting twists, in terms of who goes with Sam and who stays with Caine.

I only had two gripes with Plague. First, was that Sam’s character development was sacrificed, for the sake of other characters in the book. He spent most of his time off searching for a lake, with a few missed opportunities to develop his character.

The second gripe was purely presentational; the copy I ordered off Amazon didn’t have the same illuminous page edging as the others in my collection. While only minor, it is disappointing that my copies wont all match on my bookshelf. Especially considering that the brightly titled covers and page edging were what caused me to pick up Gone in a local supermarket.

Plague was so absorbing, that I often lost track of time while reading it. I enjoyed Plague so much, that as soon as I’d finished it, I immediately picked up Fear (the next book in the series) and started reading.
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on 3 December 2011
"Plague" by Michael Grant is the 4th Book in the Gone series and this is the first book in this series that I am going to write a review for. I have to admit that I was desperate to read this book as I have found all the previous Gone books to some of the best dark, dystopian novels available to read. I am always surprised that I actually don't see them being discussed on many other blogs, in my opinion they deserve all the accolades they can get.

This book basically follows on from the previous one in the series, the teenagers and children are still trapped inside a impenetrable bubble, cut off from their parents and the overall outside world. So far many of children have survived all that has been thrown at them, from an evil creature known as the Darkness, to hunger, sickness and in fighting. It now seems like things are going to get better as the Darkness is sealed in a mine, whip handed Drake is imprisoned, Caine and Diana are exiled to an island and the violent "Human Crew" have been dispersed. However, as always, things won't go right for the kids, Sam and Astrid's relationship is in trouble, the entire community is running out of water and a fatal flu is now spreading throughout the population. In addition, the Darkness is trying to escape and is calling new and more dangerous servants to it's cause.

I loved this book, I think it has to be the darkest of the novels so far with the brutality of life now really testing the core principles of all the characters. There is also a lot of different things going on, but it is told in a speedy fast paced manner that brings the whole thing together in really interesting finish. As always the author manages to capture the characters brilliantly, with them still acting as teenagers such as drinking, grappling with themselves and each other and of course thinking about sex even as they try and just survive the dangers being thrown at them.

There some new things introduced to us that we haven't seen before which is nice. For example there is a new character called Toto who seems to have been used to add a little bit of humour into the story as he has the ability to tell if someone is telling the truth. This a good foil to the real feeling of tension, danger and fear that infuse the majority of the story. We also get to see a new part of the area surrounded by the bubble and witness some of the main characters seemingly being at real risk of death.

In summary, I really enjoyed this book and think anyone who has been following the series will love this. The book had adventure, horror, emotion and drama all mixed together in a very dark and brutal manner that really packed a punch. In addition we actually get to see some real growth in the characters and find out some real clues about a bigger picture regarding the powers that some of the children have developed.

Now that I have finished "Plague" I am desperately awaiting the penultimate book in the series titled "Fear".
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on 7 January 2012
After the intriguing Gone and the excellent Hunger, Michael Grant now tempts us with the third instalment of his series which, at this point, seems to be gathering some notable pace.

The story this time around follows on closely from the events of the last book. Ford is still short and there is no electricity, but starvation is no longer a major concern. Instead the newly appoint Town Council is doing its best to control an increasingly strained society of kids within the FAYZ. Orsay, the girl with the power to see the dreams of others, is now accompanied by a mysterious girl called Nerezza, and proclaiming that kids should 'step out' when they reach their fifteenth birthday in order to see their family again. Over at Coates, Caine and his small band of followers are genuinely starving, to the point where Caine seeks to strike a deal with the zealously anti mutant Zil and his Human Crew. And in addition to all of this, sightings are being reported of the evil Drake, who everyone thought dead.

With his last book, Grant made it abundantly clear what one of the main theme was in the title of the book. With Lies, he effectively does the same. However, unlike the one dimensional problem of starvation in Hunger, in Lies the theme of lying and trust (or lack of it) spreads beyond a single plot strand. In the main the title refers to the mystery of whether or not Orsay is telling the truth regarding 'stepping out', which is an intriguing question in itself for the reader, but there are certainly other notable examples of characters lying which are not at all clear cut in terms of the morality of their actions.

In a way bringing into question the actions of several different characters in how they deal with unfolding events is a slightly new direction for Grant to move in. Previously 'good' characters are no longer making major decisions out of necessity, which leads them open to criticism from both other characters in the book and the reader, and in turn gives the book a darker tone. It's a clever way of developing the relationships between characters and the characters themselves, and for the most part it works quite well.

Unfortunately, however, this focus seems to come at a cost. Specifically, the main plot in this week feels quite weak in comparison to the previous book. With Caine crippled, no Gaiaphage and (initially at least) no Drake, Grant has to introduce new plot elements to create the sense of adversarial tension that was so effective in Hunger. And these simply aren't as strong as in the previous books.

There is clearly still an overarching plot that will no doubt be revealed in good time, and a couple of interested tidbits towards the end work well to perk the reader's interest in these, but on the whole Lies feels a lot like filler after a previous book that came to a solid conclusion. It is still perfectly readable and enjoyable, and fans of the first two books will lap it up, but given what Grant produced in Hunger there is surely better to come in subsequently instalments.
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on 8 March 2010
prequel to Hunger and though possible to enjoy the book Hunger, Gone is definately worth reading first as it gives a better idea of what happens within the storyline, very good value for money and would recommend this read
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on 18 November 2013
When I was reading the earlier books in the series I loved all the mysteries about the situation they were in and how it had happened and what had caused it. I also really loved the characters and excitement, personally, I kinda liked the gore and the creepier characters as without them the series wouldn't have been so gripping and stand out from a lot of young adult books but I get that thats not for everyone. Anyway, Light was just about as gory as the rest of the series so if you were okay with the rest of the books then light is the same in that respect. However I wasn't convinced that Michael Grant could create a satisfying ending. The odds were so much against a happy ending and I wasn't sure any explanation of what happened and/how they escaped the dome would really work and not just seem like some way of tying up the end of the series in a nice,neat way. On the other hand there was the chance that the series wouldn't be ended at all and would be left as a cliffhanger with no more books coming. Luckily, I was totally wrong. Light is just as good as the rest of the series (I'm not going to say better than the rest as the whole series has been pretty awesome). I'm not going to give away the actual ending but I thought the ending was satisfying and did justice to the rest of the series. It left me sad the series had ended (because it's one of the best series I've read, ever. And I read a lot.) but as it had to end, the ending in light was about as good as endings get.
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on 16 April 2013
After reading through the whole of the gone series without a break, this was the first book that I had to wait for. But it was definitely worth the wait. The whole series has been building up to this big finale, "the Endgame" as it's referred to in the book, and this book did not disappoint when delivering it. If you've gotten this far into the Gone series believing the plot lines then you'll continue to with this book, so I would recommend this to anyone who has read the series, and to pretty much anyone who hasn't.
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on 15 January 2010
Intrigued by the back of the book I grabbed a copy in the YA section I happened to be passing. Being a few years past 'YA' fiction my conclusion is that the book was OK/average on the whole. In contrast to other reviewers I certainly remember reading far scarier and more gruesome things as a teenager plouging the adult horror section of the library - Gone was pretty tame stuff.
Sadly the interesting premise dwindled away when it became clear that there was going to be no resolution in this book. All I wanted to know was: why did this happen and how will it be resolved (if at all). Rather like the tv show Lost this book has taken a fascinating idea but is now going to string it out for all its worth (££££ in other words). The writing is OK (bit leaden and verbose in parts); the plot is identiiable to start with but then divides into multiple strands none of which commands the author's entire attention so it's hard to know what the plot is at times (is it fighting Caine/is it finding out why the fayz has occured/is it trying to un-do the fayz/is it the increasing mutations and beginings of a comic book franchise?) As diverting as Gone could occasionally be I won't be joining the fayz ride - I'll just wait for the movie franchise to come out and catch it on DVD.
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on 21 April 2012
I really enjoyed this book, it's my favourite from Michael Grant in this series so far!
I even received the book early in the post, so thanks Amazon.
This book is really fast paced, keeps your attention, I honestly couldn't put it down. I love the way he's managed to change our views on certain characters, and I'm not really looking forward to how he's going to end the story in light.

The book also makes you think that main characters aren't exempt from being killed off :(
and Penny is just about my favourite person.
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on 16 May 2013
brilliant end to a brilliant series. just like all the rest could not put it down. if this was made into a film i,d be first in the que with a big box of tissues. it,s fast paced, sad, exciting it,s got everything.
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