The Gathering (Darkness Rising #1)
by Kelley Armstrong
Publication date: 4/12/11
Synopsis (courtesy of Goodreads):
Strange things are happening in Maya's tiny Vancouver Island town. First, her friend Serena, the captain of the swim team, drowns mysteriously in the middle of a calm lake. Then, one year later, mountain lions are spotted rather frequently around Maya's home—and her reactions to them are somewhat . . . unexpected. Her best friend, Daniel, has also been experiencing unexplainable premonitions about certain people and situations.
It doesn't help that the new bad boy in town, Rafe, has a dangerous secret, and he's interested in one special part of Maya's anatomy—her paw-print birthmark.
I am a VERY Big fan of Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld series, and did somewhat enjoy her Darkest Power trilogy. So when I found an ARC at one of my half-price bookshops, I was ecstatic - I thought this new series that's along the same lines/thread as her Darkest Power trilogy would be just as good as her other books, if not better.
With The Gathering, however, I feel that the book fell completely short of being good. For most of the book, it's just Blah - nothing significant is happening, no real character development. And it was just so slow in terms of getting through the story and plot. Sure Ms. Armstrong through some mysteries and very "hmmmm" occurences and events, but nothing in the story was really compelling me to finish reading the story right around 1/4 into it, and up until ~ Chapter 15 -- I read the rest of it only for the reason of finishing it. But even that took effort - I could not read the entire book in one sitting (which is usually the case with Armstrong's other newly released books). This was my biggest turn-off of the book -- if there is no real plot or something driving the story, or even having a strong and likable protagonist/narrator, it's just kind of what I consider information mush and begs the question "So what?" I felt that Ms. Armstrong gave us numerous "So what" situations, events, and even characters.
A positive aspect to the book was the introduction of a new power/ magic to Armstrong's Otherworld setting. My problem then arose with well, there is no significant development or use of this new power.
Overall, I would not recommend this to someone - especially if they are already a Kelley Armstrong fan nd are considering reading this.
Rating: 2 / 5 Stars