Gone by Michael Grant

Gone by Michael Grant

Title: Gone (Gone #1)
Author: Michael Grant
Genre: YA Dystopia
Format: Hardcover
Length: 560 pages
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
Publish Date: June 24, 2008
Dislocation of body parts, Bullying, Murder,
Torture, Eating Disorder, Suicide, Mental Health Decline,
Sexual Abuse (no explicit scenes), Homophobia,
Racial Slurs, Massacre, Autistic Slurs
Chumash Indian, Black, Chinese, Vietnamese, Autistic,
Mexican

So I’m finally getting to this one, thanks to Mandy @ Book Nook Mandy. Be sure to check out her YouTube channel, especially her video on why she recommends this series. I had to try it just for her, so thank Mandy for this review because it wouldn’t have happened without her.

Sam is a Mary Sue. Just kidding. He’s just a 14 year old that knows how to take charge during a crisis, especially when his bus driver has a heart attack and he has to make sure the bus full of kids doesn’t go over the edge of a cliff. That’s how he got his reputation of being a hero, and he really doesn’t want to be. I do kind of feel like he’s a Mary Sue sometimes, and I don’t really get his train of thought sometimes, but he’s not a terrible character.

Astrid is a smart ass 14 year old, I will say that. I didn’t even realize that all these kids were only 14 until hello, they explained that everyone 15 and older went *poof*. She has to take care of her autistic four year old brother Little Pete, and she does her best despite being completely out of her depth in handling him.

Quinn is a tough guy but seriously broke down when he realized that his parents disappeared. Understandable. He’s only 14 after all. He’s the weakest and most disloyal character I’ve ever seen in my life, and I do not forgive any of his betrayals or his cowardice. Worst character in this whole thing that was supposed to be a so-called friend to Sam.

Edilio is one of my favorite characters in this novel because he has a straight head on his shoulders and stays positive as much as possible. He’s Honduran, despite everyone’s racist comments about calling him Mexican and talking about crossing the border like an illegal alien or some shit. He deals with it in the best way possible, and Quinn is the worst person that teases him.

Lana is part Chumash Indian and she named her dog after Patrick from Spongebob. I guess I won’t hold that against her. We rarely see her throughout the book until Sam and Astrid and the rest of the gang end up coming across her in the desert. She’s a healer, which definitely works out when her and Patrick almost die in a car accident when her grandpa disappears in the “poof”.

Caine, Drake and Diana are from the Coates Academy and are seriously the worst kids ever. I don’t even want to talk about them. Ugh.

Every single person 15 and older mysteriously disappeared in the middle of the day. Whatever they were doing, just done. I feel bad for whatever airplanes ended up crashing in the middle of the ocean or a field or anywhere because hey, there’s no pilot. Hopefully there weren’t any kids on those planes because I doubt they would have survived.

So we have to follow a gang of 14 year olds, also the younger kids because how are they supposed to take care of themselves? Drama ensues. That’s what happens when adolescents are forced to fend for themselves.

Also these kids are freaking cruel and everything. I can’t believe they had to deal with this shit and some of them were murderous psychopaths. Kids can be super cruel is what this book taught me.

How all the grown ups disappeared was pretty great.

I thought that how Albert kept running the McDonald’s restaurant to feed the kids even though they were messy and didn’t really do much was great. He kept his cool. I was proud of him.

I loved Edilio so much. Like I said earlier, he was my favorite character, and I think that he was so underrated.

Kind of hard. I kind of didn’t like this book for the most part, but I feel like I may have liked it when I was younger. I was just really really upset with how these kids treated each other, and the racial and disability slurs. It just kind of really made me remember that when kids are desperate, they can become very cruel.

Also, Drake was truly a sociopath or something. He reveled in hurting other people. He liked to shoot people. He liked to torture people. He made Astrid call her brother a retard and put so much fear into everyone around him. He really was a scary kid, and I did not like having to read about him.

I feel like the diversity rep was just kind of added to be there? The first black girl was killed in an accident. The rest were kind of named just to be there, and they didn’t really have a point to them. The main characters that we followed were one dimensional at best, and I just didn’t seem to care about them at all. I didn’t like that, and I think I’ve talked about it in other posts so I won’t hash through it again.

I’m glad that I got to read this for Mandy, and I’m glad that this series helped her get through some of the tough parts of her childhood. Thank you for sharing this with me, and I am sorry that I couldn’t feel the magic as much as you could. However, I feel like this was a case of “it’s not the book, it’s me” because I have heard a few people say that they really enjoyed the series, and that it only gets better from here.

12 thoughts on “Gone by Michael Grant

  1. Great review! You cover a lot of topics that I’ve never heard mentioned before. I have a strong feeling that some of the characters in this book would enrage me lol. It’s interesting that this book is diverse yet has some racist characters, do you get the sense the author is trying to condemn the jokes and statements made toward Edilio? Still kind of interested in this one, I saw this in a friend’s collection and it looks like a giant book though lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Kitty! I think I forgot to add some things because I didn’t want to sound like I was bashing it completely. It just wasn’t for me lol.

      I don’t feel like the author was trying to condemn it at all. I mean the fact that our MC’s best friend was one of the worst perpetrators and Sam never said anything was wrong in my opinion. Edilio had to be the one to stand up for himself all the time, and you could tell he was over it because it seems like all these kids thought all Latinx people were Mexican, you know? It was just gross and I hated that so much.

      I hope you like it better than I did! I look forward to hearing your thoughts on it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I will probably still read the book anyway someday but these details are definitely worth knowing about. Thanks for the heads up!! Really appreciate it and knowing in advance before diving in. One of the reasons I’m increasingly interested in newer releases and grateful for a lot of the more thoughtful rep in newer books these days.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, don’t you just hate it when you want to love a book someone recommends but it just doesn’t spark the same love in you?! I think you explained perfectly why you didn’t like certain parts of this and they are all very sound reasons to me. I think that what you said about this maybe being something you would’ve liked more when you were younger rings true to me as well. I definitely think that adults can enjoy YA and middle grade (you and I are great examples of that) but there are some storylines that just work better when you’re closer to the same state of mind as the characters, if that makes sense? Like, 14 year olds can such problematic little assholes, but when you’re also 14, you might not see it as clearly. I’m glad you gave this a shot nonetheless and think you’re rating is really fair for your personal reading experience❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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