Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong

Genre: science fiction, folklore
Series and Book #: Darkness Rising #1
Pages: 359

Sixteen-year-old Maya is just an ordinary teen in an ordinary town. Sure, she doesn’t know much about her background—the only thing she really has to cling to is an odd paw print birthmark on her hip—but she never really put much thought into who her parents were or how she ended up with her adopted parents in the tiny medical-research community on Vancouver Island.

Until now.

Strange things have been happening in this claustrophobic town—from the mountain lions that have been approaching Maya to her best friend’s hidden talent for “feeling” out people and situations to the sexy new bad boy who makes Maya feel…different. Combine that with a few unexplained deaths and a mystery involving Maya’s biological parents and it’s easy to suspect that this town might have more than its share of skeletons in its closet.


Just like in the Darkest Powers Trilogy, Kelley Armstrong's made another strong trilogy that I'm so excited for! My favorite part of this novel was the inclusion of Native American folklore. Obviously Armstrong did her research, because the myths and the beliefs of Maya's Native background were in depth and descriptive.

Armstrong did an excellent job of making the secluded area of Salmon Creek come alive. The small town idea was well played. Maya described the place as having nothing nearby, and there was literally nothing. A couple small stores and one restaurant with the nearest town one hour away. The wilderness then became a very strong point of the book, and this is where Maya's rising "special talents" were excellently shown.

I thought the cues that Armstrong placed throughout the novel suggesting who Maya was kind of ruined the climax. Maya was smart and she pieced together everything just as I did. So when Rafe (the sexy bad boy described above) tells who she is and what that means, she doesn't freak out and she doesn't doubt it. She totally accepts it and this, I think, made the novel less about what Maya was and more about where she came from. As with the Darkest Powers Trilogy, medical research was a key part of this novel. I would have preferred if it was more supernatural and less of a scientific reason for everything.

Overall, another strong novel with another strong cast of characters. This book came off better than The Summoning. I'm more animated and excited for the next novel, waiting for Maya's upcoming Shift and her sparking romance with Rafe. The Calling's calling me!

The Cover: like the covers of the Darkest Powers, I don't really get the significance of the earring. But the darkness and the model definitely grab my attention.

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