Gone (novel series)

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Gone (novel series)
Michael Grant's Gone
First edition cover of Gone
Gone
Hunger
Lies
Plague
Fear
Light
AuthorMichael Grant
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
GenreSupernatural, Young-adult fiction, Horror
PublisherHarperCollins
Published2008–present
Media typePrint (hardback and paperback)
 
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Gone (novel series)
Michael Grant's Gone
First edition cover of Gone
Gone
Hunger
Lies
Plague
Fear
Light
AuthorMichael Grant
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
GenreSupernatural, Young-adult fiction, Horror
PublisherHarperCollins
Published2008–present
Media typePrint (hardback and paperback)

Gone is a young-adult dystopian science fiction book series written by Michael Grant. The series is centered around the fictional Californian town of Perdido Beach. Every human 15 and older vanishes, and the town and surrounding areas (later named the FAYZ) are encased within an impenetrable bubble. Many of the people and wildlife develop supernatural powers. The books follow the exploits of various characters, mainly the protagonist Sam Temple and the antagonist, Sam's fraternal twin Caine Soren.

The first novel in this series, entitled Gone, was originally published in 2008. The second book, Hunger, was released a year later, followed by the third book, Lies, on May 4, 2010. Book four, released on April 5, 2011, is titled Plague. Book 5, "Fear", was released on April 3, 2012 in the US, although it was released as early as March 23 in Australia, Hong Kong and possibly other countries. Book 6 will be entitled Light.

Contents

Novels

Gone

Every person aged over 15 simultaneously vanishes from the school in Perdido Beach, causing confusion and chaos among the pupils. It is quickly established that the adults have vanished from the entire town. Sam Temple steps up and tries to save a girl from a burning building. She does not survive, but it is revealed that the girl had the power to shoot streams of liquid fire from her hands, which caused the blaze. Not fully understanding the situation he is in, Sam decides to look for Little Pete, the autistic little brother of Astrid (the local kid genius and Sam’s love interest in the story).

Along with Astrid Ellison and Quinn Gaither, Sam’s best friend, the group discovers an energy barrier that cuts off the kids from the outside world. Along the way, they find Edilio Escobar, who decides to join them. The group later comes across town bullies Orc and his sidekick Howard, who have nicknamed the barrier the FAYZ (Fallout Alley Youth Zone). They find Astrid's brother Little Pete in the nuclear power plant (Astrid and Pete's father's workplace) in which there was a major accident 15 years ago when a meteorite hit and caused an explosion, hence why Perdido Beach is nicknamed Fallout Alley. They also find a map of radiation patterns. The fallout radius from the nuclear power plant lines exactly up with the energy barrier. Later, Sam scares Little Pete and Pete uses strange powers to choke Sam. It is revealed Sam has his own powers (he can shoot green-white light from his hands when scared/angry). Astrid reveals she's known about Little Pete's powers for a while, and Sam tells the group he once accidentally used his light to burn off his step father's hand, thinking he was going to attack his mother with a knife.

Meanwhile, a girl named Lana was driving through the desert with her grandfather when the "poof", or disappearance, occurs. The truck falls down a gulch. Lana is badly injured while Patrick, her dog, is mostly unharmed. Soon a mountain lion attacks Patrick, who was protecting Lana and Patrick is left dying slowly. Lana puts her hand on his neck hoping he will be okay and Lana falls asleep. In the morning she finds Patrick perfectley fine with no injuries. She tries to heal herself, and it works after hours of resting her hands on her injured spots. Her power will later develop to work almost instantly. She soon gets to "Hermit Jim's" shack, but is then captured by a pack of coyotes, led by Pack Leader. The coyotes had been mutated by the FAYZ so that they are now more intelligent and can speak. They take Lana to a strange creature in a mine shaft in the desert, who they call the Darkness. The Darkness orders her to teach the coyotes human ways. She does as they say for a while but eventually escapes back to the shack.

When the Sam, Astrid, and Pete returns to town, vehicles arrive in Perdido Beach being driven by the students of Coates Academy, a school for the wealthy and troubled, where Sam's mother worked as a nurse. Leading the act is Caine Soren, who gains the townies’ trust by promising better leadership and life. But after using the local church for planning with other elected kids, the building suffers minor damages by a strange force, nearly killing one of the local bullies, Cookie.

Apparently, Caine also has powers. Some of the other kids have powers, but all of them are different. Along with the psychopathic sadistic student Drake Merwin, Caine soon takes command by using the local bullies to work for him and making Sam the fire chief because of his previous actions, soon resulting in the beating and death of a townie named "bouncing" Bette, killed by Orc who was unaware of his own strength.

Soon Caine and his lackeys steal Sam’s mother’s laptop and secret chest, and find out that Caine and Sam are fraternal twins and that Caine was given up for adoption soon after his birth.

Sam and the gang leave the town when Drake attempts to kill Astrid on Caine's orders. They escape to the far side of the FAYZ. They travel across the desert and encounter mutant rattlesnakes with wings. They meet Lana and become trapped in a shack and attacked by Pack Leader and the coyotes.

Meanwhile, Caine and his group return to Coates Academy to witness the disappearance of one of their classmates, discovering that those who vanish are confronted by a monster. Sam's gang and Lana are trapped in the shack when it's set on fire by the coyotes. They manage to escape thanks to Sam, who uses his power at his own will for the first time. However, they are then captured by Drake, who takes them to Coates and shows them what he does to the freaks who oppose Caine. He traps their hands in cement bricks to prevent them using their powers. He "plasters" the gang but Astrid persuades Little Pete to make the cement disappear by attempting to smash his GameBoy with her plastered hands. A brief fight takes place and Sam shoots off Drake's arm.

Sam and the gang, along with the victims of Caine and Drake's evil "plastering" return to town where they attempt to organize the townies to fight Caine. Drake arrives at Lana's and says he wants her to heal his arm. They drive off but the coyotes arrive. The coyotes mutilate Orc, nearly killing him. The coyotes take Lana and Drake to the Darkness which uses Lana's power to give Drake a new arm, shaped like a long red python which he can use as a deadly whip, and he is raging for revenge.

Caine attacks the town with the help of the coyotes and attempts to use the children in the day care as hostages. This is averted when one of the freaks, Taylor, teleports into the center of the room and throws hamburgers in the air. This distracts the coyotes long enough for Dekka (a mutant who can suspend gravity in certain areas) and several others to rescue the children.

Caine then attacks the town center and damages the church considerably. There is a battle between the townies and the Coates kids, who also have the help of the coyotes. Drake is prevented from joining the battle by a newly mutated Orc who has doubled in size and his injuries (all of his body apart from a small patch of his cheek) are covered in a hard substance that looks like wet gravel. He attacks Drake because Drake ordered him to attack a freak who later died of her injuries (Carmela). He thinks the gravel is God's punishment for him. Sam and Caine fight in the town square and Sam successfully burns Caine's side. Sam then poofs because Caine waited for their birthday to attack. He is confronted by his mother who tells him to take her hand. Caine then poofs as well and joins Sam and their 'mother'. Caine knows that it is actually a monster due to an experiment he did earlier and refuses. Sam refuses as well, even though he does not know why Caine does, and their mother is revealed as a hideous and bloodthirsty creature. They pop back into reality and Caine retreats from the town.

Somewhere out in the local desert, Caine follows Pack Leader to the mine and to the Darkness.[1]

Hunger

The FAYZ has been slowly starving, because of the initial waste of food. Sam Temple, the mayor of the town, tries to find various ways to solve this through agriculture. However, his efforts are hampered by the fact that no one wants to work, and that food is distributed evenly. His attempts are further harmed when mutated, territorial worms with razor sharp teeth are found hiding in the cabbage patch, a main supply of food. Sam eventually has to bribe Charles "Orc" Merrimen, who is mainly made of stone and may be invulnerable to the worms, or "zekes", with beer so that he will gather cabbages.

Meanwhile, Albert Hillsborough, who ran the old McDonald's before the food ran out, starts a dance club, where kids must pay an entry fee of toilet paper or batteries in order to get in. Sam and Astrid arrive, but Sam decides to let the McClub, as it's called, stay open. Meanwhile, Quinn Gaither starts a fishing business with Albert, also charging toilet paper and batteries. Albert eventually ponders on creating a monetary financial system.

Caine Soren, Sam's enemy and twin brother, has spent months in a state of insanity due to his interaction with the gaiaphage, also called the Darkness. Diana has nursed him back, though Drake, who serves the gaiaphage willingly, attempts to undermine her. Caine then resumes command of the Coates' kids, although he must put up with Drake's planned rebellion.

Almost immediately after he awakes, Caine devises a plan to break into the nuclear plant to control the electricity of Perdido Beach. Caine also has Diana go to town and get Computer Jack to assist them. They succeed but become trapped in the plant after Sam's soldiers surround them and Caine realizes that he has barely any food. Diana then begins to question what this plan was meant to accomplish. Caine then receives a message from the gaiaphage telling him to feed it. Caine has the horrible realization that his entire plan may have just been him unconsciously obeying the gaiaphage.

Meanwhile, Lana has also been receiving messages from the Darkness telling her to come to it because it has need for her. She devises a plan to destroy the mine shaft using Hermit Jim's truck. She goes to the mining town with Cookie and manages to back up the truck to the cave mouth and kill Pack Leader, but is stopped by the gaiaphage before she can blow it up and is brainwashed. She then is Lead to the Darkness.

While this is all going on, a mutant called Hunter, who is able to fire waves of heat from his hands like a microwave, has a fight with his roommate Zil Sperry and accidentally kills their mutual friend Harry. Zil sets up a group called the Human Crew, who are all normals and believe all freaks are evil and should be killed. They capture Hunter and try to hang him in the plaza. Astrid, with Little Pete in town, try to stop them but are captured and Little Pete receives a blow to the head. Orc eventually prevents the execution, and saves Astrid, Little Pete, and Hunter. Because Hunter killed Harry he is banished and cannot enter the town so he decides to live up to his name and hunts for the kids in the town. He received brain damage being hit over the head with a bat by the human crew and, although perfectly sane, has trouble remembering (especially words) and is more simple minded than before

During this Edilio Escobar and Dekka are on their way to destroy the mine shaft. They arrive and are met by Lana, under the control of the gaiaphage, who tells them to stop and then shoots Edilio. She then retreats into the cave and leaves Dekka to the coyotes, who attack her. It is then revealed that the gaiaphage plans to use Lana's powers to create a new body for itself, one that, if destroyed, reveals an even more deadly monster, like a nesting doll. It will achieve this after Caine arrives and feeds it the fuel rod. Astrid discovers the gaiaphage is in contact with Little Pete, using him to give it the idea of a near-invincible body. She also works out that the gaiaphage is the result of an accident at the plant fifteen years ago, when a meteorite hit. She theorizes that a virus may have been alive on the rock when it hit, and that virus + radiation = mutation. The accident might have affected the kids as well, giving them their powers.

Thanks to the distraction in town Caine is able to use his powers to levitate a uranium rod to the mine shaft, with Diana and Jack. Drake stays behind to deal with anyone who follows. Sam receives this news and heads to the plant to fight Drake. He arrives but Drake tells him that with a push of a button he can release the radiation and destroy everyone, unless Sam lets Drake do whatever he wants to him. Sam, who is in the process of being tortured by Drake, is saved by Brianna, who cuts Drake's whip hand off; as well as stopping the radiation. Drake then flees to Caine.

Sam, who is gravely injured and barely alive, tells Brianna to take Duck Zhang to the mine shaft. Duck Zhang is a mutant who can control his density, and may be the only weapon they have that the gaiaphage does not know about. He then gets picked up by Quinn and gets taken to the mine shaft where he sees Dekka and Edilio, both of who are near death, as well as Caine, Jack, Diana and Drake. Diana is injured by Drake and in a fit of rage Caine hurls the uranium rod at Drake's chest, knocking him into the mine shaft, and then collapses the entrance.

Brianna then arrives with Duck and together they devise a plan to get Lana. They climb over the shaft and Duck uses his powers to make a hole in the ground to the gaiaphage. Duck, Caine, and Sam go in and Caine uses his powers to throw Duck into the gaiaphage. While Duck is flying through the air, he becomes heavier than a mountain and smashes into the gaiaphage, creating a massive hole that drags him and the gaiaphage down to the bottom of the bubble surrounding the FAYZ, however, it is hinted that Duck dies in the process. Quinn then enters and finds Lana dazed, Sam passed out, and Caine stunned. They then use Lana's powers to heal Edilio, Dekka, Brianna, and Sam. Caine then heads back to Coates.

In the aftermath they mourn Duck who saved them all. Zil and his gang run wild, the kids negotiate with the zekes, and Albert reveals his new system of money, using 'Bertos made of gold. Sam and Quinn then head out into the ocean on their boards, with Dekka on a boat, who uses her powers to create waves for them. The book ends with Brittney, a girl who was killed during the fight for the power plant and has the power to not die, alive in her grave with a pale slug (the end of Drake's whip hand) attached to her while she asks her dead brother to pray for her in Heaven.

Lies

Electricity is out in the FAYZ and the water supply no longer works. Sam Temple, the former mayor of Perdido Beach, is walking the streets at 2a.m. Down on the beach he sees Orsay Pettijohn, a mutant who can see other people's dreams. She's with a group of other kids and claiming she can see the dreams of those on the other side of the FAYZ wall. Sam also sees a girl called Nerezza, who he does not recognize. Orsay tells Sam that she's dreamed of Sam's mother, who wants to tell him that there's a time when the world no longer needs heroes. And then the true hero knows to walk away.

Meanwhile, a young girl called Jill who lives in the part of town Zil Sperry has declared a no freak zone is beaten and kicked out of her home because she is like a Siren: when she sings people can do nothing but listen. Sam discovers her gagged and bound in a hole in the ground, in the graveyard. He gets his second in command, Edilio Escobar, who tells him Jill was in the grave of a girl called Brittney, who appears to have escaped, even though she's been buried for over a month.

The next day in the "Mall", a boy called Francis tells Sam and Sam's girlfriend, Astrid Ellison, that he's going to step out of the FAYZ on his fifteenth birthday. Before Sam can say anything, Francis disappears. Astrid calls a meeting of the newly appointed council: Sam, Astrid, Edilio, Dekka, John Terrafino, Albert Hillsborough and Howard Bassem. Astrid is furious Sam lied to her about Orsay. The council agree to tell everyone Orsay is lying. Sam and Astrid later have an argument and Sam moves out of the house they both live in. Afterward a girl called Taylor, who can teleport, tells Astrid that someone claims to have spotted Drake Merwin on the beach, the evil boy with a whip hand who nearly killed Sam. They also find a boy with Drake's whip marks all over him. Later on she tells Sam that the supposedly dead Brittney is alive and in Howard and Orc's house. Sam, not knowing what else to do, asks Brianna a.k.a. The Breeze, who has the power of enhanced speed, to look after Brittney.

Meanwhile Sam's corrupt brother, Caine Soren, and the rest of the Coates kids are getting weaker and weaker, slowly starving. A camouflaging freak called Bug tells Caine there might be an island off the coast of Perdido Beach, where there might be food. Desperate, Caine strikes a deal with Zil Sperry. If Zil sets fire to Perdido Beach, it would cause enough distraction for Caine to be able to steal some boats. Caine does not expect Zil to have the courage to actually go through with it, but he does and Caine sails to the island, along with Bug, Diana and Penny; who makes people think they are seeing monsters. After Zil tries to make Sam's people think Caine did it, Caine kills one of Zil's people, Hank, who tried shooting Caine. Sam discovers it is Zil who set fire to the town and sets out to kill him, ignoring both Edilio's and Astrid's warnings. However, he soon finds himself back at the power plant, where Drake had tortured him, and knew that's where he'd end up all along.

When Caine gets to the island, he discovers kids living there; the adopted children of the mansion's owners. A boy called Sanjit gives them food but it's drugged and they all fall unconscious. When they wake up, they see Sanjit is trying to use a helicopter to escape with the other children. Caine nearly kills them, along with Penny, but Diana falls off the edge of the cliff and Caine has to release his hold on the helicopter in order to save her. Sanjit escapes and, flying the best he can with his siblings, heads to Perdido Beach.

In Perdido Beach, the inhabitants manage to stop the fire but many kids are killed. At a cook off in the plaza, Mary Terrafino claims she saw Drake, who soon arrives and causes mass panic. At the same time, Nerezza convinces Mary to take the children to the cliff over the beach. Nerezza then tries to kill Little Pete, Astrid's autistic little brother and the person who caused the FAYZ, but she fails. Astrid arrives at the cliff and sees Mary and a line of children holding hands at the cliff edge. On the moment of her fifteenth birthday, Mary sees her mother and steps off the cliff to try to get to her, pulling the children with her. Sam arrives, but no one can help because they are rendered helpless by Nerezza, who tells Jill to sing. However, Sanjit's helicopter arrives and drowns out the singing. Mary vacates, but the children are saved by Dekka and Brianna. Then Brittney arrives, slowly transforming into Drake. Drake attacks Sam but Sam uses his power to burn Drake. However Drake soon turns into Brittney again and Sam is not able to kill the innocent girl. He asks Brianna to grab some ropes and chains to hold Drake. At the same time, Little Pete finds that his GameBoy, the favourite thing he owns, smashed on the ground. He reacts by screaming and causing the FAYZ wall to disappear for a split second. Astrid sees adults staring on the other side before the wall returns.

It is finally revealed that the evil creature called the gaiaphage is behind everything. It needed both Brittney's immortality and Lana Arwen Lazar's healing powers to bring Drake back from the dead. However, Brittney's willpower stopped Drake taking over the body they shared completely. Nerezza is not human at all; she's the gaiapahge's avatar, brought to life using Little Pete's impossible powers, who was tricked into thinking he was playing a game. The gaiaphage had used Nerezza to try to kill the young children Mary pulled after her, which would have broken the kids of the FAYZ, but the tactic failed, and Astrid almost kills Nerezza by choking her, but realizes it is not the answer and stops. Brittney/Drake needs no food or water to survive, so Sam locks them in Howard and Orc's basement. In the end Sam catches the flu, which is a hint as to the plot of the fourth book, Plague.

Plague

The Book starts with a short chapter about Pete Ellison which describes life from his point of view. Sam Temple is revealed to be drunk after seeing Brittney/Drake earlier in the day and feeling particularly low about his and Astrid's relationship decline. Sam had obtained the alcohol from Orc and Howard, stating that he was "confiscating" it but later succumbing to the temptation. In a blind, drunken rage, he attacks the FAYZ wall, but his efforts yield no result; whilst he is up on the clifftop Taylor "bounces" up to see him and they end up kissing. In the end, Sam feels guilty and pulls away. Taylor tells him to come back when he gets bored of Astrid's frigidity.

The next chapter focuses initially on Diana at the island home, who has qualms about what she has done and decides to become a better person and perhaps reform Caine as well. The second half of the chapter deals with three previously unknown girls, Jennifer B, Jennifer H and Jennifer L; all three are suffering from a new strain of flu which causes the victims to literally cough up their lungs. After Jennifer H dies from the flu, Jennifer B crawls to the makeshift hospital to warn Dahra Baidoo of the deadly disease, but Dahra mistakes her warning as feverish hallucinations. Lana, the healer, finds that her healing powers are ineffective against the fever.

Meanwhile, Hunter is stalking a lion, but he is distracted by a growth on his shoulder - he notes he can feel it moving around inside him. The lion notices him and pounces, but is startled when bitten by the growth, allowing Hunter to kill it. Later, as Hunter delivers the lion meat, his growth bites one of the collectors.

Perdido Beach is now being effectively run by Albert, whose scheme to introduce capitalism has been a success and has placed him in a position of considerable power. Albert sends Sam, Jack and Dekka on a mission to find a new water source over at Lake Tramonto, almost directly opposite Perdido Beach, as the town's supplies are running low. Sam and a few others embark on the journey and presently encounter Hunter. Multiple insects are hatching from within him and he is attempting (and failing) to commit suicide with his microwaving ability. Sam agrees to kill him out of pity; after Hunter and Dekka pray together, Sam incinerates Hunter with his power. The insects within Hunter, however, are unaffected. A new pack leader, who is also infected by the insects, is discovered shortly afterwards. He reveals he knows where the creatures that cause the infections live, and willingly leads Sam's party there, on the premise that Sam will euthanize him afterwards. During Sam's cleansing of the creatures (these are physically different from the insects, being described as flying snakes, and no not share the insectoid invulnerability to Sam's power) one drops a green slime on Dekka; Sam cauterises the area to prevent infection.

Brittney/Drake has been incarcerated in a house basement in Perdido Beach, with Howard and Orc on guard duty; whilst Howard is out, Jamal (Albert's personal bodyguard) visits and accidentally enrages Orc. In the ensuing melee, Drake escapes, and quickly secures Jamal's allegiance through threats of violence.

On their way to the lake, Sam, Jack, and Dekka come across a military base and search it in hope of food. They discover the base was containing and studying freaks, but only one remains: Toto, who has the ability to discern truth from lies. He appears to have mental problems and is constantly speaking to a plastic Spider-man bust, even after Sam grows angry and melts the figure. Toto leads the group to a derailed train, whose containers reveal many things; Nutella, Apple computer products, Pepsi, putrefied oranges and handheld missile launchers. When Sam and his friends finally reach the lake, they are confronted by the insects once more, which have grown to the size of SUVs and are being commanded by Drake. They escape, and learn the town will shortly be under attack. It is also revealed that Sam's cauterising attempt has failed; Dekka is infested with the insects.

Meanwhile the flu is spreading in Perdido Beach, causing the inhabitants to effect a quarantine. Despite assistance from Sanjit and Lana, Dahra's hospital is being over-stretched, and there is still have no effective treatment. Edilio discovers the kid bitten by Hunter's growth, Roscoe, infested with the parasitic insects. He makes the decision to confine him to a heavily-secured room and leave him to die, stopping the insects from spreading further. Between the flu and the water shortage, society begins to break down in Perdido Beach. Former Human-Crew members Turk and Lance attack Albert, leaving him close to death. Meanwhile, Pete - suffering from a fever - removes the walls and ceiling from his room and produces a raincloud to cool himself, revealing his powers to the FAYZ at large. Orc accidentally kills a boy in a drunken rage and goes to find Astrid for redemption. Turk and Lance reach Astrid's house and announce their plan to wound Astrid and murder Pete. A feverish Edilio turns up at the scene and a stand-off ensues - panicking, Edilio shoots both Turk and Lance. Orc takes Astrid and Pete to Coates Academy.

Back up at the cave, Brianna attacks Drake with a garotte, using it to slice him apart in a reversal of an idea Drake previously used to set up traps for her. However, Drake's body reassembles itself - he has gained Brittany's immortality - and Brianna only narrowly escapes. Edilio sends Quinn to get Caine, realising they need his power to offer a defence against the insects. Caine accepts, seeing the invitation as an opportunity to take complete control of the town and become a totalitarian king, ignoring Diana's pleas for them to remain on the island.

Sam's party formulate a plan to use Dekka's power to rapidly move themselves and the missile container back to Perdido Beach, intending to use the missiles to kill Drake's insects. Drake's insects attack the town and Caine attempts a defence, but is almost overwhelmed and has to be saved by Brianna. Sam's plan works and he, Toto, Jack and Dekka arrive back at Perdido Beach; however, the insects begin to emerge from Dekka. Brianna and Lana arrive and ultimately save her life. It is strongly hinted that Dekka reveals her attraction to Brianna before passing out.

Drake travels up to the Coates academy with some of his insects; he has been ordered by the Gaiaphage to capture Pete, and personally wishes to murder Astrid. Orc attempts to attack Drake but is too drunk to finish the job and falls out of the window, where the insects swarm him. Jack runs in to help Orc. Acting on a gamble, Astrid throws Pete to the insects; he realises the danger and vanishes the insects, along with himself. It is suggested that this move by Astrid, adding to her concerns over Sam, are beginning to affect her sanity.

Caine and Sam hold a meeting in Perdido Beach, giving every citizen the option of staying in the town with Caine as king or moving to the lake with Sam. Toto is present to ensure that neither party make false promises. Albert stays in Perdido Beach on the grounds that Caine makes several concessions to him, making Sam note that despite his and Caine's abilities, Albert holds the real power. Quinn stays in Perdido Beach with his fishing team. Diana unexpectedly chooses to go with Sam, and reveals that she is pregnant with Caine's child.

The book ends with a view from Pete's mind, who is apparently alive but without a body to inhabit. He revels in the fact that he has overcome the "limitations" of his mind, suggesting his autism disappeared along with his body.

Fear

Four months have passed since the events of the previous novel. Pete is experimenting with his current existence by tampering with 'avatars' within his 'new game', actually the inhabitants of the FAYZ. This results in gruesome deaths as he changes their DNA clumsily, and one of his victims is Taylor.

At Lake Tramonto Sam decides to get the missiles he left in Perido Beach, but discovers that someone has already taken them. While looking for the missiles he sees that the FAYZ wall is turning black. Astrid, who is currently living in the woods, also sees the changed barrier and returns to Lake Tramonto to see Sam and inform him about the barrier.

Outside the FAYZ, nurse Connie Temple learns that the military has been testing the strength of the barrier by hitting it with x-rays and examining how much is reflected back. The FAYZ wall has reflected 100% of the x-rays since the start of the testing but is now only reflecting 98.4. Mary Terrafino and Francis, who 'poofed', are revealed to have been taken outside of the FAYZ and hideously mutilated by the event, they eventually die whilst on life support.

In Perdido Beach Caine punishes Cigar, one of the Quinn's fishermen, for killing a boy named Jaden. His punishment is 12 hours with the now insane Penny. Penny's visions eventually cause Cigar to claw his own eyes out. Lana heals him but his vision does not work properly and his eyes only reach the size of marbles. Quinn is very upset about this and retaliates by refusing to fish until Penny is forced to leave Perdido Beach and not come back.

Drake/Brittney has returned with the task of bringing Diana and her unborn baby to the Gaiaphage, so that it may use the baby as a body.

Upon realizing that the FAYZ will go dark, Sam decides to send a message to Caine offering to give light to Perdido Beach. However, the messenger Mohamed sees Drake and his coyotes killing Howard and returns to the lake. Realizing that they will all die if Sam does not give them his Sammy suns, Astrid goes out on her own to send the message to Caine.

Darkness fills the FAYZ. Believing there to be no hope, Albert decides to leave for San Francisco de Sales Island with the missiles. Penny cements Caine's hands together and drags Caine through town, humiliating him by making him dance in front of the whole town. Penny announces to the town that she's the new "queen". The residents of Perdido Beach want Caine back as King due to the dire circumstances, and drive Penny out of town where she reunites with Drake, who has captured Diana and is heading for the mineshaft. Caine is in no condition to rule, so Lana makes Quinn temporary leader of PB.

Brianna, Jack, Dekka and Orc all fail to find or stop Drake reaching the Gaiaphage, and Jack is badly injured as a result of his attempt.

In the Gaiaphages lair, Diana gives birth to her baby, who the Gaiaphage then inhabits. Drake, Diana, Penny and the Gaiaphage (who is known as Gaia in the baby form) head to the barrier through Perdido Beach.

Astrid meets Cigar who (with his new eyes) can see Little Pete and the pair accidentally walk into a field of zekes. Cigar gets eaten but Astrid makes it out alive and talks to Pete, who connects with her mind. Pete reveals that the barrier is turning black because it is dying and that it and the Gaiaphage are connected. He realises that without his body, he does not have the power to bring down the wall and that he used the Gaiaphage's power to first create it.

Sam finds Astrid and they head to Perdido Beach where they free Caine and get Quinn. Sam, Caine, and Quinn head toward Drake, Penny, Diana, and the Gaiaphage.

Outside, the military plans to try and destroy the barrier using a nuclear bomb underground. Sergeant Darius Ashton reveals this to his girlfriend Connie Temple (Sam's mother) and she tells the public. After much protesting, the military decides to stop the detonation, but an unseen force causes the countdown to continue.

During the battle, Penny is killed by Caine and Sam fires and hits Gaia. Instantly sunlight returns to the FAYZ as the wall turns transparent. As the world looks in, Sam once again fires on Gaia who burns but is seemingly unhurt. She, along with Diana and Drake, flee the scene.

As communication through signs starts between the FAYZ and parents, Sam and the others feel despair as parents ask where dead children are. Astrid feels distant from her family, and eventually realises it is because she is no longer 'theirs', and that Sam and Astrid now belong to each other, and the FAYZ belongs to them too.

Light

Light will be the conclusion to the series. Not much is known about it yet. Michael Grant confirmed he has not started writing the book yet as he wants to finish 'BZRK 2'. The book should be out in 2013. Michael Grant confirmed in an interview that the secrets of the FAYZ Wall will be revealed in the book.

I'ts been more than a year since every person over the age of fourteen dissapeared from the town of Perdido Beach, California. In that time, countless battles have been fought. Battles against hunger and lies and plauges and worse, battles of good against evil, and kid against kid. Allegiances have been won, lost, betrayed, and won again; ideologies have been shattered and created anew, and the kids of the FAYZ have begun to believe that their new society is the only life they'll ever know. But now that the darkness has found a way to be reborn, the tenuous existence they've established is likely to be shattered for good. will the kids of Perdido Beach even survive?

Characters

Main characters

Sam Temple: A fifteen-year-old boy named Sam is the main character. He was nicknamed "School bus Sam" after saving a group of school kids when their bus driver had a heart attack, and he took the wheel and steered the kids to safety. He is described to be good-looking, but not so much that girls would call him a "hottie." He is tall, with dark brown hair and blue eyes. He has a crush on Astrid Ellison throughout the entire novel and eventually becomes a leader among the "townies" while in the FAYZ. Like others he has developed a freak (mutant) ability; he can shoot green beams of energy from his hands. It is also revealed in Gone that Caine is his fraternal twin brother. After the Thanksgiving battle, Sam is officially elected the leader of the children of Perdido Beach. However, with the new title comes a whole new batch of responsibilities. Sam is shown to be falling apart due to the vast amount of stress placed on him through the next two books (appearing to suffer from post traumatic stress disorder'). Though a council is established at the end of Hunger, he is still ineffectively running the entire town but becomes tired of the constant pressure, demands and blame for anything that goes wrong. Sam's mother was a non-observant Jew, and his fathers name on the birth certificate is Teagen Smith. At the end of Plague, Sam lead a group of volunteers to live at Lake Tremonto. In Fear, Sam must cope with the FAYZ blotting out the sky and faces his worst fear, total darkness. During the time of the novel, Sam loses his virginity to Astrid. After the barrier became clear, he displayed his power to the world by trying to burn two bodies, one dead.

Astrid Ellison: A fifteen year old girl dating Sam Temple and is the sister of "Little Pete". She is nicknamed "Astrid the Genius" because she is considered a brainiac and seemingly knows everything. Astrid is conventionally pretty, with blonde hair and blue eyes. Astrid's style is described as very proper and slightly formal, but after the coming of the FAYZ she begins dressing more casually. Astrid and Sam's relationship deteriorates during the later portion of the books. One of the most important parts of Astrid's life is caring for her brother, something she often puts before her role on the town council and her relationship with Sam. Astrid, like Sam, finds the job of running Perdido Beach's council too difficult, and the job is passed to Edilio Escobar, a close friend of Sam and of Astrid. Astrid is highly religious and through the later books she has many moral struggles, starting with the realization that "a simple act of murder" caused Little Pete to create a disruption in the FAYZ wall, revealing the outside world for a split second. Life in the FAYZ eventually causes Astrid, like so many others, to crumble and ultimately she throws her brother to the bugs sent by Drake Merwin to destroy the town, hoping that this act will cause the FAYZ to end. In Fear, Astrid is lost in the FAYZ after running off at the end of Plague. She sleeps with Sam a couple of times in the book. Ultimately, when the barrier becomes clear at the end, she turns her back on her parents. During the book she gives up on her faith.

Peter "Little Pete" Ellison: A five-year-old autistic boy. He is described as being pretty like a girl, and more than a bit strange. He is a Freak with strong but unknown powers. It has been shown that he has the power to teleport others and himself to other locations, the power to choke someone telepathically, create illusions, imagine things and make them come to life, levitate, create rain clouds and many other abilities. Pete has not been measured by Diana and, although he is very powerful, He can't control his powers properly. Sam and Edilio see via a security tape at the power plant that he is the one responsible for the FAYZ; he is said to be the most powerful Freak in the FAYZ by far. Unfortunately, Pete only reacts to trigger words such as "window seat", "munchy munchy" and "walkie walkie"; otherwise, he is almost completely unresponsive and keeps his attention focused on his Gameboy system, which he is described to be playing Pokémon. In Hunger Pete's dreams come to life as real beings. He is also in contact with the Darkness, who thinks of him as “Nemesis” - “Nemesis with infinite power held only in check by the twists and turns, the blind alleys and sudden high walls inside his own damaged brain”. He plays "games" with the Darkness who uses these "games" to make Pete do what he wants. Pete goes to the Darkness in his head to escape the overly bright real world. At the end of Plague, Astrid throws him to the bugs, and Pete and them vanish. However, it is stated that Pete is still alive but without a body to inhabit, making the world less painful for him and causing the gaiaphage to be afraid of him. It is important to note that Little Pete may have caused the FAYZ in one of his panics. It is revealed in "Fear" that not only did Little Pete cause the FAYZ, but he also lives in a supernatural form that can interact with the inhabitants of the FAYZ, but he ends up killing half of the people he touches. He drives Cigar crazy after he is tortured by Penny, and Cigar dies close to the end by zekes. Pete touches Astrid but doesn't damage her. He explains to her everything about the FAYZ.

Caine Soren: Caine is a decisive antagonist, meaning he shows both great acts of good, but more or less greed, cruelty and malevolence. He is described as charming and charismatic, able to easily obtain whatever he desires. He leads the kids of Coates Academy on a rampage to attack the power plant, thus leaving the kids of Perdido Beach in the dark. The first book reveals that Caine is Sam's fraternal twin brother. Like Sam, he is a Freak. He is telekinetic, which means he is able to move things around with his mind. Caine struggles with his mental health after meeting the gaiaphage. The creature appears to have nested inside his head and is quickly driving him to the brink of insanity. He shuts down the nuclear power plant to steal uranium fuel rods to feed the gaiaphage, but changes sides when Diana is injured by Drake and on the brink of death. He's in love with Diana, but seems to have no problem with hurting anyone else. Caine has impregnated Diana by the end of PLAGUE but it is unknown if the baby is more powerful than its father, Diana currently reads it at a "two bar" unlike Caine and Sam who are "four bars". Sam's, and thus Caine's, mother was a non-observant Jew (GONE, chapter 14). In Plague, despite Diana's attempts to reform him, Caine returns to Perdido Beach (after being summoned by a dying Edilio) to attempt both to kill the bugs and to rule Perdido Beach and become its king. During Fear, Caine sentences Cigar to a torturing from Penny after he killed a kid. Caine has hardly any influences with Sam during the novel, but in the end attempts to stop the gaiaphage alongside Sam at the end of the story. He ultimately becomes a protagonist.

Diana Ladris: Caine's chief assistant, with the power to read power levels of other teens and children. Though described as beautiful at the beginning, she's depicted as giving Caine and everyone else a hard time and snarky remarks and she is usually called a witch by Sam's people. Caine seems to be in love with her despite this. Diana nurses Caine through his insanity and tries to keep him from succumbing to the will of the Darkness, out of her own love for him. Drake attempts to kill her, but his attempt is stopped by Caine. She barely survives, but with Lana's healing, she does. In Plague she sleeps with Caine and later reveals that she believes she is pregnant at the end of 'Plague', and that Caine is the father. She leaves Caine and goes with Sam to the lake. She saved the lives of Virtue, Pixie, Bowie, Peace, and Sanjit by distracting Caine so they could escape him and the island. She is able to gauge power levels in a system like cellphone bars. In Fear, Diana gives birth to her child, which turns out to be a girl, five months too early. Her child becomes possessed by the gaiaphage and ages at a much accelerated rate, with it being an infant in the later stages of the book to it being described as the size of a two year old at the end. Diana names her daughter 'Gaia'. She defects to the side of the gaiaphage after having her child.

Drake Merwin: A psychopathic teen with shark-like features, nicknamed "Whip-Hand" because one of his arms becomes replaced by a red whip-like tentacle by the Darkness with Lana's help after Sam burns his arm off. Drake willingly serves the gaiaphage, frequently challenging Caine's authority and taking advantage of his mental instability. Drake almost kills Sam after threatening to flood the FAYZ with radiation, but part of his arm is severed by Brianna (a.k.a. Breeze), one of the Mutants loyal to Sam. He later attempts to betray Caine, badly injuring Diana (whom he seems to have a sadistic fixation on). Drake is killed by Sam and Caine, but is resurrected by the gaiaphage using Brittney's immortal body as well as Lana's healing powers. After unsuccessfully attempting to take over Brittney, they keep switching over control and are captured and imprisoned by Sam and his team. Drake later escapes and takes Brittney to the gaiaphage. He then leads the army of bugs against Sam. Drake fails and heads back to the gaiaphage. In Fear Drake's prime directory given to him by the gaiaphage is to retrieve Diana so the gaiaphage can be born. He goes about most of the novel attempting to do just this. He sides with Penny before reaching the gaiaphage with Diana and a hostage named Justin. Drake constantly whips Diana and threatens to kill her even after she gives birth. Diana sides with him after the gaiaphage absorbs Diana's daughter's body. Drake and Diana retreat to the mineshaft after they are defeated by Sam and Caine.

Quinn Gaither: Sam's best friend, who is described as giving off a "cool-guy vibe" with the way he dresses and acts. Quinn is a surfer and despite being bigger and supposedly stronger than Sam, he is not mentally able to handle devastating events. He breaks down quite frequently and in his fear, he does not think too clearly and turns on his friends to save himself. However, his conscience comes back to haunt him and keeps him wavering on the brink of insanity while he's in the FAYZ. He relies on Sam's guidance most of the time; whenever he does things for himself, he ends up getting confused or scared. In spite of all this, he proves to be helpful during situations in which he is too afraid to do anything. He discovers a knack for fishing and begins to catch fish and sell them to Albert. Quinn helps Sam after he is severely injured by Drake. Though he wants to go with Sam to the lake, Quinn stays in Perdido Beach at the end of PLAGUE with his fishing crew. In Fear he is deeply involved in the Perdido Beach story arc and becomes a more important character in the town. At the end of it he offers to help Sam and Caine fend off Diana and Drake, despite Sam telling him not to. He serves as the distraction during the battle, but keeps his pistol at his side.

Edilio Escobar: A Honduran boy who is Sam's second in command. He is in charge of the Perdido Beach security and later takes charge of the council. He has a team loyal to him who he trains in using weapons. He is also the main source of transportation for Sam as he has learned to drive. He is shot and seriously wounded by Lana in HUNGER but she eventually saves him. He makes up one of the six members of the law determining counsel and is the Sheriff of Perdido Beach. So far into the series he has no known powers. He also had very honorable morals and is respected when Sam tells people to, though some doubt his abilities since he does not have the Power. He is also the one responsible for digging graves in the plaza, which causes mental stress. He becomes dangerously sick in PLAGUE but manages to survive and accompanies Sam to the lake. He reveals to Sam that he is gay in the later points of Fear and takes over running the lake after Sam goes out to find Astrid. His role becomes permanent.

Lana Arwen Lazar: Lana, aka the Healer, was driving with her grandfather and her dog Patrick when the FAYZ occurred. The truck veered off the road into a gully and left her too injured to think, but it is because of this that she soon discovers she has the power to heal with her touch. Lana secludes herself from the town to avoid being constantly asked to heal minor injuries. Like Caine, she is influenced by the Darkness, and plans to kill it by blowing up the mine it dwells in. She ultimately fails and is completely taken over by it, shooting Edilio under its will, and attempting to kill herself through radiation poisoning, but is freed by Caine, Duck, and Sam, who send the gaiaphage to the bottom of the bubble surrounding the FAYZ and bury it. However, the contact with the gaiaphage has started to shatter her metal stability, and by the end of LIES she (with Patrick) flees from Coates Academy and goes to Clifftop. In PLAGUE, Lana has a love interest, Sanjit. She is addicted to nicotine. She plays a considerably minor role in Fear, only being there to heal the wounded in Perdido Beach. She starts to lead Perdido Beach along with a couple other major characters at the end of the book.

Dekka Talent: An African American Mutant girl from Coates. She can remove gravity from a limited space, causing everything in that area to be lifted into the air. She is loyal to Sam and shares many battles with him. She is mauled by coyotes but is saved by Lana. Dekka tends to be the person that deals with any problems that Edilio is unable to solve, at least partially because she is an exceedingly powerful Freak. Dekka doesn't like to talk about herself much so other kids tend to think of Dekka as a fearless and a scary person. Dekka is also a lesbian, and is (unrequitedly) in love with Brianna, who, until FEAR, is unaware of Dekka's feelings. In PLAGUE she is attacked by bugs. Sam, Lana, and Quinn save her. At the end of PLAGUE it appears (but isn't directly stated) that she confesses her feelings to Brianna and accompanies Sam to the lake. During Fear, she helps search for Drake, but runs into emotional trouble, with an argument with Brianna ensuing that culminates with them two deciding to be "badass sisters". She is scarred by Penny after she makes an illusion so that Dekka thinks that she is being buried alive in stone and that the bugs are eating her inside out. She travels to Perdido Beach (after Orc helps her) and manages to help with the final battle with Drake and Diana.

Brianna aka "The Breeze": A 12-year-old mutant with the ability to run at incredibly fast levels of speed. Her top speed is unknown (she claims to have run over 600 mph when she beat a bullet) but she can cover a few thousand feet in the blink of an eye. She saves Sam's life when he is on the verge of being beaten to death by Drake by cutting off part of Drake's snake-like arm. She is known to be talkative and seems to be the person who embraces their powers the most. She likes to be powerful and is the last to back down from a fight. Because of her speed she is responsible for delivering messages throughout Perdido Beach. She seems to have feelings for Computer Jack, though to a significantly lesser extent in Lies. It is confirmed she is dating Jack in Plague, and is angry when he leaves town without telling her. When Dekka is attacked by the greenie and it appears she may die she whispers in Brianna's ear. We don't find out what she says but it is likely Dekka was telling her that she liked her. After this Brianna starts avoiding her, but they ultimately have an argument in Fear when out searching for Drake. She starts to fear about losing her power during the novel and is tricked to helping the gaiaphage possess Diana's daughter. She shows off to the audience when the barrier turns clear.

Computer Jack: Jack is a Freak with super strength. He is also the tech guru of Perdido Beach. Originally from Coates, Jack has joined Sam and his team in Perdido Beach. Despite his strength, he lacks confidence and is very easily manipulated. He is responsible for removing the uranium core from the Power Plant and turning off the electricity. He had a crush on Diana that was later transferred to Brianna, though he still seems to have feelings for Diana. He tries to help Sam avoid the poof during the final battle in GONE, however only did so on Diana's bidding, as well as fighting Drake in Plague and giving Astrid enough time to throw Petey to the bugs. He reveals that he is dating Brianna in Plague after living together because of the epidemic in Lies, and is considering asking her if she will 'make out with him'. He is the least secure with his powers and often forgets that he even has any. He goes to the lake with Sam at the end of PLAGUE. During Fear he is hit severely by Drake to the neck and fatally bleeds. It has been stated by Michael Grant that he will live.

Albert Hillsborough: An African American boy who originally kept the McDonald's open in town until he ran out of supplies. In its place he opened McClub a place where the town kids can party and have fun for the price of batteries or toilet paper. After no one in town wants to work, he comes up with the idea of establishing the pay system because he believes no person will work for no money. Uses the gold in Hermit Jim's shack and bullet molds and long forgotten McDonald's monopoly game cards to bring money to Perdido Beach (Six cards equals one gold bullet). The currency, although named "slugs" by Albert was called "'Bertos" by Howard and the name stuck. He is highly respected in town. He is also one of the Town Council members. Is brutally beaten but survives in Plague and remains in Perdido Beach, on several conditions. Despite having no mutant powers, it transpires that Albert is the most powerful and influential person in the FAYZ. He flees to the San Francisco de Sales island during Fear.

Zil Sperry: A non-freak boy, who constantly makes fun of Mutants. He threatens Hunter which leads to the death of Harry. He decides that chuds (a derogatory name he calls kids with abilities) get all the breaks and food, and comes up with the Human Crew in an attempt to take over the town. With the Human Crew he finds Hunter and strings him up at the church in an effort to hang him. He is stopped by Orc and thrown through the air. Later he is found with four broken ribs. In LIES, Zil, along with the Human Crew, burns down much of Perdido Beach before the fire is stopped by Edilio and his crew. At the end of LIES, he is killed by Dekka. His girlfriend was Lisa.

Charles "Orc" Merriman: A half-human, half gravel-like boy. He became like this when he was attacked by mutated coyotes. Gravel started to replace the parts where they attacked him so his only remaining section of skin is a small patch on his cheek. His tough exterior makes him invulnerable to most physical damage and also gives him superhuman strength. He developed an alcohol problem after hitting Bette with a baseball bat and accidentally killing her,and will only do assignments in exchange for beer. Orc plays a major part in gathering food from the fields because he is tough enough to withstand the zekes that are there. He plays a minor part in trying to take the Power Plant back from Caine and his crew. He also saves Astrid and Hunter's lives when the Human Crew attacks them. In PLAGUE he saves Pete from the remnants of the Human Crew and defends Astrid from Drake in Coates in the end of PLAGUE. He thinks of Astrid as his only real friend. Whilst attempting to drink himself to death, Orc tore off the human side of his face. In Fear, Orc becomes sober and starts reading the bible. He attempts to settle a vendetta between himself and Drake during the novel and spends most of it trying to find him.

Brittney Donegal: Brittney has a Regenerative ability. She was originally part of Edilio's soldiers but was killed in HUNGER. However she came back to life thinking herself as an avenging angel. She is in the same body as Drake. She believes she was sent back alive to kill Drake by her dead brother Tanner (who appears as an angel), who was actually a hallucination made by the gaiaphage. In PLAGUE she meets and is manipulated by the gaiaphage and helps Drake to try to kill Sam, Jack and Dekka. She was very Christian but now believes that the gaiaphage is actually God and that she must follow His orders.

Gaiaphage/Darkness: Astrid believes it is an alien bacterium which came from the asteroid that impacted the nuclear plant, but in actuality it is said to be an organism created by a dying race of benevolent aliens in order to spread life throughout the dead cosmos, but the good intentions were flawed when the meteor it rode upon hit a power plant, killing a man, and fusing with his DNA, causing it to become a malevolent being that intends to kill all life on earth and 'start anew.' Although evident by its history, this may all just be a lie to get Brittany to join him and Drake. It feeds on nuclear energy and when it comes into contact with Freaks it co-opts their power, particularly that of Lana, Caine and Drake. It uses Lana's power to create Drake's whip-hand, to create Nerezza and to resurrect Brittney. The gaiaphage is locked in battle for supremacy over the FAYZ with Pete, the autistic five-year-old. Its name revealed to mean "World Eater" in Plague. It is a strange organism, possibly known to have made the FAYZ built of Alien DNA, Human DNA, and raw radiation. It has been described as "Thousands of crystals revolving over one gravitational center, suggesting a sphere". It has questionable power over everyone in the FAYZ, though it has almost total power over anyone who has been touched by it. In Fear the gaiaphage is reborn in Diana's baby, and it is revealed by Little Pete that the barrier is made from the gaiaphage, and that the main reason the barrier was going dark was because of the gaiaphage getting weaker. It is hinted that the human DNA absorbed by the Gaiaphage was that of Sam and Caine's father after it is said that he was the only person killed by the meteor. This would in a way, make the Gaiaphage their father.

Mary Terrafino: Known to all as 'Mother Mary,' she is the main caretaker for the littles. The kids of the FAYZ, especially the younger ones, look to her as a mother figure and she is highly respected throughout the FAYZ. Despite her good nature, Mary struggles with depression, anorexia,bulimia,and the inevitable stress of being responsible for too many other children. She has one younger brother, John, whom she leaves behind when she attempts to escape the FAYZ after being told by Orsay that when you die you exit the FAYZ, by attempting to hold hands with all the day care children, and jumping over a cliff. All of the children are saved, but Mary 'poofed'. In Fear Mary reappears outside the FAYZ. She is mangled and nearly unrecognizable as a human. Mary later dies in a hospital that also houses Francis, a boy who 'poofed' as well.

Hunter: Accidentally killed his friend Harry in HUNGER with his power to shoot heat waves from his hands and cook things from the inside-out. He was prosecuted by Zil Sperry, causing Zil to create the Human Crew. He ran from the group and asked 'Duck' to help him but was caught and nearly hung by the Human Crew and suffers severe brain damage. Afterwards, he was forced into exile for killing Harry. Takes up the job of hunting for the town and becomes very skilled at this. He is killed in PLAGUE when the large insects from the 'greenies' start to eat his insides out and he uses his own powers on his head, to try to kill himself. When this does not work he asks Sam to kill him, which Sam does unwillingly, to stop Hunter from being eaten completely by the bugs.

Orsay Pettijohn: She first appears in Hunger. She has the power to see inside others' dreams. She is controlled by Nerezza, a creature created by gaiaphage. She is murdered by Nerezza (the gaiaphage's avatar) in Lies. The gaiaphage made her believe that the only way to get out of the FAYZ, besides turning 15, was to die.

Nerezza: Only appears in Lies. She is the vehicle of the gaiaphage, and attempts to control Orsay. When Orsay decides to end the charade, Nerezza murders her. Astrid attempts to strangle her to death, failing. Sam attempts to kill her as well, but before he can, she vanishes.

Bug: A freak with the power of camouflage (invisibility), Bug mainly plays the role of spy for Caine; however, he appears to be loyal to himself before all others.

Taylor: An Asian teen with the power to teleport, or 'bounce,' Taylor is a loyal supporter of Sam and his doings in the FAYZ. She is also known to openly have a crush on Sam, which is a source of hostility between her and Astrid. At the beginning of PLAGUE Sam gets very drunk and fools around with her but it doesn't go far. Her main role is the relay of messages around Perdido Beach. At the end of PLAGUE, Taylor was offered to be rowed to Caine's island, so she could teleport there and enjoy it whenever she wanted. This causes her to switch to Caine's side. At the end of PLAGUE she stays with Caine. In Fear Pete accidentally mutates her after touching her avatar, changing her body, turning her skin gold and causing her to teleport into things.

Penny: Introduced in LIES, Penny is a twelve-year-old girl from Coates Academy with the power to cause others to hallucinate and see monsters. She is extremely useful to Caine, and is loyal to him above all others (likely due to her crush on him). When Diana is trying to help Sanjit escape from the island, she tries to stop her. Caine holds her over the helicopter, and when Diana falls he throws her onto the island, breaking both of her legs. Caine gets her legs fixed by Lana when they get back to Perdido Beach. Her powers are used for punishment for crimes in Perdido Beach under Caine's rule in Fear, but defects to Drake's side to seek revenge after she "cemented" Caine, imprisoning his hands in a block of cement. She fights with Drake until the very end. She is killed by Caine after he uses a piece of cement to crush her head in revenge. Sam burns the rest of her body.

Sanjit: Brother to Virtue ('Choo), Peace, Pixie and Bowie. Flies the helicopter from his house to the mainland at the end of LIES with his siblings. Sanjit has a big crush on Lana, and finally by the end of PLAGUE they are considered going out. Sanjit has a "class clown" attitude. Helps out with the plague victims at the hospital in PLAGUE. Before being adopted by the famous actors and living on the island, he and his adopted siblings each lead hard lives in different poor countries and lived on the streets. He travels to the lake bearing a warning from Lana about the stain. He, with other kids, run into a group of coyotes that distracts Sanjit and kills most of the children. He is kept at the lake under Sam's orders.

John 'Brother John' Terrafino: The younger brother of Mother Mary, John Terrafino cares for the littles alongside his sister. He is commonly called "Brother John" by the littles. When the council is established, John is one of six members (because Mary does not have the time). Against his better judgement, John lies to Mary about Orsay's powers of prophecy with hopes of stopping Mary from 'stepping out' on her birthday.

Dahra Baidoo First introduced in GONE, she is the closest thing the FAYZ has to a doctor. She volunteered for it because her mother, Abana Baidoo, is a medical professional. She has grown to dislike this occupation, but she still keeps doing it. Dahra takes on a more prominent role in PLAGUE, where she leads the "fight" against the Supernatural Death Cough by charting the progress of the disease, taking care of the victims, and ordering Quinn and his people to quarantine themselves. She also strikes up a friendship with Virtue. In FEAR, she takes care of Cigar until Lana can heal his eyes. Her and Lana often collaborate, and are also friends. Dahra is probably fourteen at the start of the series, where it is said she is in the ninth grade along with her boyfriend Elwood, and therefore has probably survived the poof. Her loyalty appears to belong to her patients first.

Howard Bassem Orc's follower, usually does negotiating for him. He came up with the term FAYZ (Fallout Alley Youth Zone) in GONE, and came up with the slang for money ('Bertos). He was an original council member. He is sarcastic and rude, he also runs a "black-market" for drugs and alcohol in the FAYZ and made a still at the deserted Coates Academy. He doesn't seem to care about peoples' lives as shown in PLAGUE where he saves Albert, but demands a reward from him. Astrid openly despises him. He doesn't appear to have any friends but in PLAGUE it is revealed that he not only controls Orc but thinks of him as a friend. In Fear Howard is choked to death by Drake and eaten by the Coyotes. It has been indirectly mentioned that Howard is African American.

Duck Zhang: Duck is an Asian boy with a love of swimming. He has the power to control his density; he can make himself so light that he floats into the air, or so heavy that he can drill through the ground. However, he found out he had to be happy to do the prior and angry or upset to do the latter. He has a highly introverted personality, being described as unattractive and unable to socialize with girls. He is initially terrified of and ridiculed for his power. Due to his shyness, he is largely unaware of the social goings-on of the FAYZ - something which nearly causes his death, as he walks unaware into a Human Crew mob. When Lana is held captive underground by the gaiaphage, he hesitantly accepts the duty of drilling into the mineshaft as part of a rescue attempt. During the ensuing fight, he uses his power of density to drill through the gaiaphage and carry it deep into the earth after both Sam and Caine prove to be incapable of damaging it. Duck is killed in the resulting fall. Moments before his death, he realizes that despite his outward aversion to becoming involved in the various conflicts of the FAYZ, deep down he wanted to be a hero. As his body could not be recovered, a monument is constructed by Edilio to honour his sacrifice.

Minor Characters

Bette: Bette was known as Bouncing Bette, but dies in the first book, GONE, by Orc's relentless beating; her death is a major source of guilt for Orc, who began drinking heavily in order to cope. The personality changes her death provokes in Orc last throughout the series so far. Bette had the power to make her hands glow.

Pack Leader: The leader of Coyotes that took Lana to the Darkness in the first book. The role of Pack Leader is changed numerous times throughout the series due to the deaths of previous pack leaders.

Sinder: Sinder was first introduced in Lies, she is represented as a goth girl dressing in black. In Fear she developed the power to accelerate the growth of plants.

Jezzie: A good friend of Sinder in Fear, she assists Sinder with growing vegetables for the children at Lake Tramonto.

Cigar: A thirteen-year-old member of Quinn's fishing crew, he first appears in Plague. He is sentenced to spend a day with Penny, from sunrise to sunset for killing a boy named Jaden in an alcohol fueled fight. He claws his own eyes out as a result of Penny's horrific visions. When Lana attempts to heal him,his eyes only partially grow back and he is unable to see properly, only seeing spectral images of people and objects. He plays a small role in developing the plot when he helps Astrid communicate with Peter for the first time, at the expense of his sanity. He is killed by zekes near the end of Fear.

Harry: Harry was a boy described as having glasses. Apparently, he lived with Zil Sperry, and Hunter and Charlie . After Zil and Hunter get into an argument that quickly turns into a confrontation when Zil grabs a Fire Poker and jabs at Hunter who tries to strike him down with The Power. Unaware that Hunter's power was active at the time Harry jumped between the two trying to break them up and was killed from the heat wave. This leads to Zil accusing Hunter of killing Harry. Hunter leaves to find Lana unaware that she has disappeared. It is assumed his body was buried at the Plaza. Harry's death also becomes a main reason of why Zil Sperry created the "Human Crew".

Terms

There are multiple terms and abbreviations used by the inhabitants of the FAYZ;

FAYZ- Fallout alley Youth Zone.

Zeke- A carnivorous worm like creature that inhabits farmland. It is described as black, with a ring of razor-sharp teeth, note similarity to monster Sam and Caine encounter at end of Gone

Greenie- The flying snakes that inhabit the hills. Their spit can cause parasitic ants to grow inside the kids. For example Hunter was the first victim.

Bugs - The bugs that result from the Greenies spitting on a person. These bugs rapidly grow within their victim, eating them from the inside out. When grown, they chew their way out of their victims, leaving them for dead. The resulting insects grow rapidly- within less than twelve hours, they are said to be the size of small vans.

Moof- Mutant Freak- Derogatory term used by the "Human Crew" to describe the children with powers.

Chud- Another derogatory term used to insult children with powers. Said to be even more offensive than 'Moof' or 'Freak'.

Freak- one with the power.

The Power- a supernatural ability.

'Berto- The currency used by the inhabitants of the FAYZ, invented by (and named after) Albert.

Sammy Sun- The power that Sam has to make "Suns"- Little balls of green light that are known as "Sammy Suns" Sam discovers this ability before the happenings of the FAYZ, when, stressed out and scared, alone in his room, he creates one, out of fear of the dark.

Lake Evian- Another term coined by Howard, this refers to the water brand Evian, referring to the way that most of the FAYZ's drinking water is obtained from this reservoir.

The Big Split- The event in which two groups, led by Sam and Caine, split from each other in Fear. Sam's group headed torwards the large lake situated northwards, while Caine, while acting king, remained with his group in the town.

PB- Abv-Perdido Beach

Critical reception

Reviews have generally been mixed to positive[2], though many note Gone's success in its intended demographic. Mal Peet of The Guardian pointed to the series' "rave reviews, most of them posted on websites by teenagers," though noting that such success stemmed from literary sacrifices that made characters into "crude two-dimensional digitisations."[3]

The Book smugglers have taken to a more positive note, saying "The GONE books are some of the darkest, most violent, deliciously horrific and provoking dystopian series’ out there. Since I was introduced to Michael Grant’s Stephen King-esque work, his novels have consistently made my top 10 favorite reads of the year of their publication."[4]

Stephen King likes the series, writing:[5]

"I’ve been corresponding with your 'Michael Grant' about his Gone books. More important, I’ve been reading the Gone books–the first and Hunger, the follow-up. These are exciting, high-tension stories told in a driving, torrential narrative that never lets up. There are monsters, there are kids with mad-crazy super powers, there’s the mystery of where all the adults went. Most of all, there are children I can believe in and root for. This is great fiction.

If you want to quote any or all of that, be my guest. I love these books."

Critics[who?] often praise the action packed, page turning style of the series, while noting that it also finds time for ample character development.

References

External links