Friday, October 4, 2013

Review: Gated by Amy Christine Parker

Gated Do the gates keep the unchosen out or the chosen in?

In Mandrodage Meadows, life seems perfect. The members of this isolated suburban community have thrived under Pioneer, the charismatic leader who saved them from their sad, damaged lives. Lyla Hamilton and her parents are original members of the flock. They moved here following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, looking to escape the evil in the world. Now seventeen, Lyla knows certain facts are not to be questioned:

Pioneer is her leader.

Will is her Intended.

The end of the world is near.

Like Noah before him, Pioneer has been told of the imminent destruction of humanity. He says his chosen must arm themselves to fight off the unchosen people, who will surely seek refuge in the compound's underground fortress--the Silo.

Lyla loves her family and friends, but given the choice, she prefers painting to target practice. And lately she'd rather think about a certain boy outside the compound than plan for married life in the Silo with Will. But with the end of days drawing near, she will have to pick up a gun, take a side, and let everyone know where she stands.

My Review:

Gated is a fantastic page-turner that had me completely invested in the story at all times.  I loved the way that it made me feel about the characters.  The characterization was done so amazingly.  


One thing that was so wonderful about this book was the way it made me feel while reading it.   Pioneer was the character that made me very angry.  I knew that he was lying about the end of the world coming. Despite his lies, he was able to influence a bunch of people into putting their trust into him.  They gave up all of their normal lives for a lie.  Of course, they didn't know it was a lie.  Lyla's mom in particular made me mad.  She was unable to question anything that Pioneer said, even when Lyla tried to convince her that he was lying.  Lyla's mom was so sure that he was, without a doubt, correct.  She was so upset about the kidnapping of her other daughter years ago that she practically forgot about the daughter that she still had.  She wanted the world to end because she was just so angry about Karen's kidnapping.

Lyla is a good character who had been shaped by the beliefs that Pioneer had brought her up believing.  She knows that anyone who doesn't live inside the Community is evil and will be wiped out when the world ends.  She begins to question all of this when she meets Cody, a boy from Outside who doesn't seem evil.  Her relationship with him is well written.  He cares about her, but he understands that her leader, Pioneer, is very strict.  When she tells him the truth behind her Community, he tells her it isn't true and proves it to her.  I think it was a good decision by him to do because Lyla needed to know what to really believe.

I liked Lyla's friends inside the Community.  Her first friend there was Will, and when she became a certain he became her Intended.  She knew that they would be married someday, but she never really had romantic feelings towards him.  That's unfortunate for Will, who does actually have feelings for her.  Eventually, he realizes that her feelings towards him are only friendship.  Later in the book, he is so upset by Lyla not returning his feelings that he has trouble believing something important that she tells him.  Marie is Lyla's friend as well.  She does some rule-breaking things in the Community.  I liked how she was there to believe when Lyla needed someone to know she was telling the truth.

If you like YA contemporary with a slightly dystopian feel, read this book.


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