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Plague: A Gone Novel

Review

Plague: A Gone Novel

Eight months have passed since the beginning of the FAYZ: when a mysterious snow globe-like barrier enclosed a 20-mile radius area and all people over the age of 14 disappeared; when weird creatures began to evolve and some of the children developed special powers; and when kids had to learn to survive on their own. Some have lived, others have not. All are facing their worst nightmares, with new ones hatching every day.

The water supply is almost gone. It hasn't rained in the entire eight months of the FAYZ, and the small lake where they get their drinking water is drying up fast. Albert, the business guru, finds an old printed map that shows another lake way out of town. He asks Sam to take a small crew and check it out but to keep the mission a secret to avoid panic. Sam is more than happy to take this on. He and Astrid are fighting again, and besides, if he comes back with good news, maybe the town will find favor with him again. Unfortunately, things don't stay quiet while he's gone.

Two new physical afflictions explode with horrendous results. The first is a new flu-like virus. This deadly illness spreads fast and forces the inflicted to literally cough out their lungs. But even scarier is that Lana, the healer, doesn't appear to have any effect on curing it. She can't seem to help Hunter, either. Hunter comes to Lana with a strange lump that has developed gnashing teeth. The horrors that await Hunter are unimaginable…and contagious.

Meanwhile, the evil and undead Drake escapes from his basement prison. He reunites with the Darkness, the Gaiaphage, and sets out with a new, indestructible army of giant insects. The Gaiaphage never plays nice, and he always gets what he wants. And right now, the Gaiaphage wants Little Pete, the autistic boy.

Michael Grant's boundless imagination continues to amaze, shock and disturb as he delivers the fourth book in his Gone series. Excitement abounds with deadly battles and new dangerous outbreaks, but there's also lots of emotional discovery as well. The characters struggle with what's right versus what's wrong versus mere survival. Most of the fascinating characters' stories are woven together, but Grant cleverly separates Little Pete's point of view into his own chapters, and handles the character's autistic viewpoint with sensitivity, depth, intrigue and mystery.

Grant also has the courage to tackle some intense subject matters, including bigotry, self-hatred, depression, alcoholism, and even cannibalism. In fact, some younger or more sensitive readers may find this installment too disturbing. But for the rest of us, this is one thrilling ride where the pages demand immediate attention. It's as if all the creepiest, grossest, wildest, most gripping of horror stories in the world merged together to become one awesome adventure. Fans will be impatiently waiting for Book Five.

Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman on April 5, 2011

Plague: A Gone Novel
by Michael Grant

  • Publication Date: April 3, 2012
  • Genres: Dystopian, Fiction, Thriller
  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
  • ISBN-10: 0061449148
  • ISBN-13: 9780061449147