Came out: July 1, 2008
Source: Barnes & Noble
Age Group: Young Adult
In the blink of an eye. Everyone disappears. GONE.
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…
If I had one word to describe this book, it’d be intense. Everything about this book is intense. I don’t usually read sci-fi type books, but this was absolutely incredible. While this isn’t the book that you want to read if you want a calm book based mostly on the characters, it blew my mind.
Sam is interesting, to say the least. I found myself curious as to where his character was headed. I liked how although it showed him calm in the face of trouble, he did get scared; he just didn’t let anybody see him like that. He didn’t try to take charge, but it somehow gravitated toward him until Caine arrived. He kind of reminded me of that quote,
“Be not afraid of greatness; some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.”
Astrid annoyed me. Quinn was likeable and confused. People will easily relate to him. Caine was slightly malicious, but you can understand why. I liked how all the secondary characters played a role in the book. It mainly focuses on Sam, but you get to see how the FAYZ affects lots of people individually. Occasionally, Michael Grant will feature a chapter on somebody else so that later in the story, you see how they play a role and adapt to their new world.
Although, like I said, this book doesn’t really focus on the characters. First, comes the surprise and denial of all the kids, wondering where their parents went. They are scared and alone, and it seems very realistically written. First, kids think it’s great and they can do whatever they want. Then, they realize how much they rely on their parents and the adults who support and care for them.
Oh my gosh, the action in this book was sublime! It was unbelievable! My heart was racing throughout the entire last half of the book. There were betrayals, supernatural powers, chases, bullies. The last half was a roller coaster: once I thought that everything was over, the intensity built up again. I swear, it has a ton of action. Adrenaline pulsed through me when I read this and the writing was so bloody brilliant that I thought I was in the scene with the characters!
Anybody who wants an action-packed pageturner, pick up this book. And the great thing about this book is that it isn’t even gender-specific. Whether you are a girl or a guy, an adult or a teen, you will love it.
Recommended for anybody who loves: The Hunger Games; The Lord of the Flies; The Maze Runner; action-packed books; books that focus on a range of characters; science fiction; supernatural powers; etc,.
Possible book club questions:
When Sam gets some food from the store, he leaves money on the counter, while everyone else just steals. What do you think this shows about his character?
Why do you think the cut-off age is fifteen? Do you think that the FAYZ considers that too mature?
What role do you think that L.P. will play later in the books?
Why do you think Mary automatically steps up to take care of the children?
What would you have done if you were in Quinn’s position?
Do you think Caine was right to do the things he did?