Publisher: Harper Collins (US)/Atom (UK)
Date Published: 15th April 2011
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I TOTALLY loved this book!
The Gathering is the first book in a spin off series of The Darkest Powers Trilogy.
Its set in a small town surrounded by forests and run by the local pharmaceutical company, The St. Cloud Corporation. There is a population of only 200 people and most are families of employees of St. Cloud, except for Maya, whose dad is the Park Ranger. He was head hunted for the position when Maya was 5. Most of the other children, who are in their teens now, were born there. Except for Sam, who is a cousin to one of the locals and the strange and mysterious Rafe.
Rafe is a player, who comes on to a lot of girls but seems to pull back at the last moment. "A player with attention deficit disorder" Maya calls him. But suddenly he is interested in her. And knowing that he wont get anywhere by acting like a sexy bad boy, the way he usually does, he shows her a different side to himself and she falls for him.
Daniel is her best friend, who is very protective of Maya. I feel that he is in love with her but she doesn't seem to notice or feel the same way about him. He sometimes "feels" things and he really dislikes Rafe.
Maya begins to have strange dreams around the same time that a stranger shows up and starts asking questions about the kids in the town. A weird encounter when she goes to get a tattoo leaves her asking questions about herself. She is adopted and has amazing parents so she never gives any thought to her birth mother, until now. A string of strange occurances leave herself and Daniel feeling suspicious towards St. Cloud, especially around the fact that their friend/girlfriend, drowned in a lake she had swam in all her life when she was one of the strongest swimmers in the town and was on a new medication provided by them at the time.
I really liked the characters in this book. Maya was a strong, confident protagonist who wasn't the type to be pushed around. She loved animals and had a special way with them. Daniel was HOT and I was hoping Maya would see the light in her feelings for him. I feel there could be a love triangle on the way in the next book. Maya had some great friends in the town who, I assume all have supernatural powers. I was excited by what Maya turned out to be, it was completely unexpected for me, I was expecting something else. I can't wait to see what Daniel's power turns out to be along with all the other kids. None of them seem to realise yet that they are different.
I feel that this book was set in and around the same time as the Darkest Powers, as they don't appear to know that Dr. Davidoff is dead.
This was a great book and I could not put it down. I think any fans of the Darkest Powers series should definitely read this.