In the blink of an eye. Everyone disappears. GONE.My Thoughts: Huh. So, part of me really liked this book and the ideas behind it and then there's another part of me - the mommy part of me - that wanted to slap those kids up alongside the head and tell them to get their heads out of their asses. Here's the thing, my issues had nothing to do with the writing style or the characters but rather the idea that these kids were on their own and they were making really crappy (although, at times, painfully realistic) choices.
Except for the young. Teens. Middle schoolers. Toddlers. But not one single adult. No teachers, no cops, no doctors, no parents. Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what's happened.
Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day.
It's a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: On your birthday, you disappear just like everyone else...
Now I'm not a 14 year old kid. Thank goodness. Or I'd have an awfully hard time explaining how I have an almost-12-year-old. Anyway. I'm not 14. So when the bad stuff happened and the adults disappeared my first thought was "Check the houses for the babies!" Naturally, that wasn't what the kids did. They panicked. They tried to figure out what was going on. Perfectly normal reactions under the circumstances. It didn't stop me from wanting to shoo them toward all those now-adultless houses and tell them to HELP THE BABIES!
Then there was the food issue. I totally get that a bunch of kids aren't going to be looking toward the long term in regards to rationing food. Dude. I've seen the way my son eats. I really do get it. But the adult in me is like "RATION! RATION! RATION!" and "STOP EATING ALL THAT CANDY! YOU'LL GET CAVITIES!" Knee jerk reaction, guys. I can't help it.
I guess the point I'm trying to make is that I don't think I'm the target audience for this book. My brain flipped into Zombie Apocalypse Survival Mode (I read a lot of Zombie books, that's always the first thing that pops into my head when terrible things happen) and I wanted the kids to think smarter and not turn into ravening Lord of the Flies delinquents. I liked the book, don't get me wrong, but I couldn't help shaking my head throughout it and hoping things would turn out differently. If you can suppress the mothering instinct, this book is a fun, somewhat dark read with no clear-cut ending on how things are going to turn out in the long run for our heroes. This is a fair sized series and I'm sure many of the questions I was left with are addressed in later books. I just keep thinking SAVE THE BABIES and MAKE SURE YOU BRUSH YOUR TEETH!
More books by Michael Grant
Reading challenges: The E-book Challenge, The YA Reading Challenge, The Horror & Urban Fantasy Challenge