Thursday, 16 May 2013

Lies by Michael Grant **Review**

This is the third book in the Gone series. If you haven't read books one or two, do not read the synopsis to this book, or my review, as they will contain spoilers for the previous books.
Click the following links to read my reviews of the previous two books:

Lies by Michael Grant
Series: Gone #3
Pages: 472
Publisher: Egmont
Release date: 5th September 2011
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones

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Goodreads synopsis:
This is the third book in the Gone series. If you haven't already read the first two books, do not read this synopsis or review, as they will contain spoilers for the previous books in the series. See the top of the post for links to my reviews of books one and two.

66 Hours, 52 Minutes

Suddenly, it's a world without adults and normal has crashed and burned. When life as you know it ends at 15, everything changes.

Tensions are growing in the FAYZ. The mutants are under attack. Food is scarce. Sam's gone AWOL.

At night, a solitary figure roams the streets-- the ghost of a boy with a whip hand, haunting the dreams of those he has tormented.

Then the town is deliberately set on fire... And through the flames, Sam sees the figure he dreads most--Drake. But that's impossible: Drake is dead.

"A blood-pumping, white-knuckling sci-fi thriller of epic proportions."

Wow. Wow. Wow. That's all I can think of to say, having just finished this third instalment in the Gone series. I have seriously been enjoying reading these books - they're action-packed, exciting, edge-of-your-seat, thrilling reads, crammed full of loads of seriously great characters - both good and evil. But this book blew the other two right out of the water for me. It is, without a doubt, my favourite of the series so far!

Lies kicks off with some very bizarre events. Orsay - a character we meet for the first time in Hunger, who can step into the dreams of those around her - believes she has begun seeing the dreams of the people on the other side of the FAYZ barrier, the invisible wall that surrounds Perdido Beach, where the kids have been trapped, and fighting for their lives, for the past few months. She believes that kids don't just cease to exist when they 'step out' of the FAYZ on their fifteenth birthday, but are reunited with their families on the other side of the wall. Could this really be true? There are so many uncertainties, so many half-truths and outright lies in the FAYZ, that no-one really knows what to believe anymore. Could there be a more sinister force at play behind her 'prophecies'?
Not only do we have these weird, new revelations from Orsay and her growing cult following, the problem with Zil Sperry and his 'Human Crew' remains strong, as Zil pushes to try and gain control from the 'freaks' and take over Perdido Beach - destroying all of the freaks who get in his way (and some who don't), and even the town itself. As if Sam didn't already have enough to deal with!
And then there's the little problem of Brittney - the girl who died in Hunger, but not completely - and the strange events that surround her. Spreading talk of Zombies in the FAYZ is exactly what Sam doesn't need to add to the building panic that already exists.
The one good thing that Sam can focus on, though, is that kids are no longer starving. Between Quinn (who has finally found his calling, his purpose in the FAYZ, which is to fish), Albert (who creates a working currency system that finally gets kids working together - kind of), and Hunter (who lives up to his name perfectly), they manage to get enough food together and distribute it between the kids so that no one is hungry to the point of starvation any more.
But these are just the basic problems, and things are about to get a whole lot more complicated - and definitely just a little darker. All of the problems that the kids faced filled me with an increasing sense of dread, and I loved seeing how each situation changed as the novel drew towards its frightening climax.

Sam's character, in particular, is one that changes a lot in this book. He goes from being the 'leader' of Perdido Beach, to lacking the control that he needs to take care of Zil, and the other growing problems in the town, thanks to Astrid and the other kids who make up the newly formed town council - an attempt to bring proper law and order into their little cut-off society. Things aren't exactly going to plan though, as you might imagine, when the people that are running the show are, at the oldest, fifteen years old!
I felt really sorry for Sam the whole way through the book, but at the same time, I didn't think that the way he wanted to go about things was the right way either. I don't think, in his position, I'd have been able to make the decisions that he did, particularly when it came to Zil and the Human Crew - as awful as they are! But, on the other hand, I did feel his frustration. He'd become used to being the one who had to make all of the tough decisions in the FAYZ, since the very beginning, and now suddenly, he didn't have that kind of power, mostly thanks to his girlfriend, Astrid.
I have to say, Astrid really irritated me in this book - she had the right ideas, but she wasn't doing anything towards them, and she was going about some of it in entirely the wrong way, and I just wanted to slap her and say "Oi, get a grip!" most of the time. Eventually she pulls through, though (in her own way), and I was almost back to liking her again by the end.
There were plenty of fights in this book, not just between two or three characters at a time, but between Zil and his Human Crew, and the 'Freaks' - and sometimes the rest of the town - and Zil makes one stupid mistake after another, that almost causes more damage and suffering than the kids can take - if the cracks weren't visible before, they definitely are now!
I'm really interested to see how the power dynamics in Perdido Beach will change again in the fourth book, and how the kids will come to terms with the horrible things that have just happened!

Like in Hunger, we also get to see a few new faces in Lies. We meet a little kid called Justin, who I liked, but didn't have as much of a role in the story as I was hoping he would do; but then there are Sanjit, Virtue, Peace, Pixie and Bowie - the multi-nationality, adopted kids of a famous thespian couple, who live on a large, secluded island, off the coast of Perdido Beach. They are contained within the barriers of the FAYZ (though they don't really understand what's happening as well as the other kids do), so all the adults from the island have disappeared, leaving Sanjit (as the oldest) in charge.
I loved seeing their story develop - it was something new and exciting to add into the mix with the rest of the characters and storylines - their story is so different to those on Perdido Beach. I can't wait to see what will happen with them next (I can't say any more because I don't want to give anything away).
This kind of links in with Caine and the remaining Coates kids' story too (though I won't go into too much detail with this). I said in my review for Hunger, that I was almost beginning to like Caine, and even feel sorry for him, by the end of that book, and that has, surprisingly, carried on into this book, despite some of the truly awful (and disgusting, unthinkable) things they do in order to survive. Their story is really interesting, and I have a feeling it's about to get a lot better!

I have struggled to write my reviews for every single book in this series so far - not because I didn't like them, and I couldn't think of things to say - but because there is so much going on in the books, and I love them so much because of that, that I don't quite know where to start, or how to make sense of my thoughts, and the feelings that they stir in me.
This series is such a whirlwind of excitement, that they have swept me up in their tornado (or maybe it's Dekka's tornado I'm caught in?!), and whipped me into such a frenzy that the words come out all jumbled!
So I will simply finish by saying that this is definitely the best book in the series so far, I can't wait to get going with book four, Plague, right away, and if you haven't picked up the series yet, what are you doing?
Pick them up. Read them. They are, put simply, awesome.


Natalie Cleary said...

One of my all time favourite series!!! All the books are so intense and action packed and you NEVER know whats going to happen next!

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