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Tent City (Tent City #1)

3.88  ·  Rating Details ·  682 Ratings  ·  187 Reviews
After a devastating plague, introverted 17-year-old Dani Campbell and her family find themselves living in a very different America, one run by a cult-like leader, who forces children to move to "safety camps" designed to protect the human race. Encouraged to flee by her parents, Dani and her five-year-old brother seek refuge in the Black Hills of South Dakota. On the run ...more
Paperback, 252 pages
Published March 27th 2013 by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform (first published March 10th 2013)
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Nov 16, 2015 Carmen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA Fans
I just couldn't understand how he could just take a life as if it meant nothing.

But that's not how it was. It was necessary. Necessary for survival. I feel bad about the lives I may have taken, but I understand. It was me or them.

If I had only known that I was capable of all this before we left, this might have been a little easier. Back then, I was scared all the time. But maybe this journey is what got me here.

BOOK #11 in Carmen-Downloads-20-Free-Ebooks-Onto-Her-Kindle-Day. More widely known a
Raquel Valldeperas
This book. I don't even...I don't know.

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*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review.*

In fact, the author was absolutely adamant about the honest part, and I had no problem with that. Often times I read something in exchange for a review, and then I feel bad when I don't leave five glowing stars. That doesn't stop me from being honest, however, but it's nice to do it without a guilty conscience.

The blurb for the book sounded good. It was well written, which is the first thing I look for
Dec 12, 2013 Jack rated it did not like it
For book reviews and more, please visit my book blog, The Book Stop

Tent City was a book I was more then excited to read. What intrigued me most, was the original concept of the plot. It’s hard to find an original dystopian novel, with the genre at it’s peak these days. But it’s not everything to have a glowing concept, as we all know. And Tent City greatly disappointed me with most of the basic aspects of a good book. The idea had potential, but as a novel overall, Tent City has less than impres
Mar 06, 2015 Sarah rated it really liked it
This is a survivalist type story involving a girl named Dani who must flee with her young brother or risk being sent to a camp and made into a breeder. The author throws you straight into the story, which I loved. I was flipping pages immediately. The writing is clean with neat descriptions, making note of interesting details. I did find the main character a little hard to relate to, but that's not a problem for me. I don't need happy, go lucky main characters. I like real people, and Dani is ...more
Melissa Cushing
I LOVE this book! Great Dystopian novel and I really could NOT put it down once I got going. Here is the blurb from Goodreads.............

After a devastating plague, introverted 17-year-old Dani Campbell and her family find themselves living in a very different America, one run by a cult-like leader, who forces children to move to "safety camps" designed to protect the human race. Encouraged to flee by her parents, Dani and her five-year-old brother seek refuge in the Black Hills of South Dakota
Nov 16, 2015 Rose rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: r4r, fantasy, dystopian
Update Oct 26/15 - Enough time has passed since I read Tent City that I thought a re-read was in order before I moved on to Red River. As it turns out, the copy I originally read (which the author provided me) was not the final book that was published. It threw me off a bit while reading and it ultimately changed my view on the story. I still liked it, but there were some not-quite-super powers added which took away from what I thought was a really good read.


Original revi
Laura Greenwood
Review posted on June 13th on

I was given a copy of Tent City in ebook form from the author in exchange for my review.

Dani lives in the USA, except after a plague of locusts there isn't enough food for people to eat, and some people have enhanced personality attributes. When the country's dictator, General Burke, passes a law saying that all children between the ages of 5 and 18 had to be relocated to 'safety camps', Dani's parents tell her to run, w
Nov 16, 2015 Gabby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arr-r2r-r4r
*There may be spoilers in this review, but big ones will be marked*

Actual Rating: Really hard for me to decide, so 4.5
Favourite Character: Kelly has made some absolutely amazing characters, and I can't choose just one. So Bentley (Who I need to remember has an ‘e’ in his name), Jack and Brody.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review, from the "David Estes Fans and YA Book Lovers Unite!" group on Goodreads.

I remember when I first saw this book, I immediately wanted to read
I was given my copy via the author for an honest review.
This is one of those books I search for and never find when I desperately need them! Its fast paced, there's great character development, you can actually see the main protagonist grow and even though it was only during a five months span she flourished near the end. It was rewarding to take this journey with the characters. Some I didn't quite care for as much as others Brody her little brother is amazing for some reason I was expecting h
Nov 16, 2015 Laura rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story is AMAZING!! Kelly did such a great job. I loved the ending,it was so cool, I actually said "OOOHHHH WOW!" outloud! So I hope Kelly, who is a mom & wife, continues with the story soon, as I need to know what happens next! I am interested in all her characters, even the "minor" ones. I am interested in the "love triangle" and wonder how Dani will ever ever choose, they are both such great guys. Get to work Kelly! I need to know what happens next!
I will be giving my copy of this gre
Amanda Peake
Oct 10, 2013 Amanda Peake rated it it was amazing

Author: Kelly Van Hull
reviewed by: Amanda Peake

After a devastating plague, introverted 17-year-old Dani Campbell and her family find themselves living in a very different America, one run by a cult-like leader, who forces children to move to "safety camps" designed to protect the human race. Encouraged to flee by her parents, Dani and her five-year-old brother seek refuge in the Black Hills of South Dakota. On the run with danger around every corner, Dani
Jennifer Beving
Oct 02, 2013 Jennifer Beving rated it it was amazing
I was at the SD Festival of Books when I saw this attractive book cover and display. So I was drawn to the book. I knew immediately after reading the back cover that I was going to buy this book. It was the only independent that I bought at the festival.

I was not disappointed. I won't go into details because I hate spoilers, but the main character Dani finds herself living in a tent (obviously) along with her little brother after society has begun to collapse (there is explanation for the downf
Amy Queau
Nov 16, 2015 Amy Queau rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 Stars
An amazing story. One that I will reread. Extremely visual without over-doing it.
The characters in this story are extremely real to me. I enjoyed the narrative, and although sometimes seemed a little choppy, it never slowed me down. I read this book in under a day.
I'm completely in love with Jack. Oh, Jack! And, who doesn't have a friend like Kit? There are so many characters to keep track of, and at one point I had to ask myself, 'Wait, who is Jess again?', but overall, I would highly
J.D. Spero
Nov 16, 2015 J.D. Spero rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Van Hull creates a convincing dystopia with her intriguing premise about what would happen if our world was devastated by the 10 deadly plagues. I felt sympathetic toward this gutsy, complex heroine. Lots of action, suspense, and an irresistible love triangle makes this a must read. Page turner, for sure! I cannot wait for the sequel to see how these characters navigate the unexpected development at the end of this novel.
Nov 16, 2015 Leonie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read Tent City on a "read for an honest review" premise, with a copy supplied by the author.

Tent City by Kelly Van Hull is an intriguing read. The novel is written in first person present tense, from the point of view of Dani, a teenager in a dystopian or perhaps pre-apocalyptic world. I enjoyed the story, which although slightly predictable, was a pleasant journey. The idea of "advancements" was interesting, and I would have loved to see this more fully explored. However, this is probably a
Cheer Papworth
Nov 16, 2015 Cheer Papworth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: post-apocalyptic
I'm a little torn on an accurate rating for my feelings regarding Tent City. This stems from a personal conflict I have between the things I appreciate in this story and the things that fell a little flat. What I liked (not loved mind you) is the transformation that Dani goes through from being a typical, teenage girl to a strong minded and capable leading character. The love triangle didn't feel deep rooted in emotion, although I really like Jack...Bentley I could do without. Part of that is ...more
Nov 16, 2015 Valeria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tent City by Kelly Van Hull is an amazing page turner, full of mystery, action and a dose of love. To make it short I was really caught up in this book, it is really fast paced, creative, the descriptions are beautifully done, you could actually see the place as if you were there, and most importantly, the characters, their relationship, and the situations they get into are believable and well crafted.

Kelly really did an excellent job with her debut novel, and has definitely won a fan in me. Thi
Tilly Currer (Hardcore Heroines)
Danielle, her friend Kit, and her brother Brody, escape the chaos of society and the soon impending ‘safety camps’ children are forced to live in. Tent City was an enjoyable Dystopian read that had me interested from page 1. Dani grew throughout Tent City, both physically and mentally, she seemed so much more capable by the end of the book, and I found that satisfying. She doesn’t sit around, something happens to spur her into action and train, so she can protect herself and those she loves.
I wa
Nov 16, 2015 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-reveiw, apocalypse
I received a free copy of this book.

What would you do if you had to send your kids away? What would you do if you could never see your family again?

Famine has hit, locust have eaten all the crops and the U.S. Government has been toppled by the Military. All children between the ages of 5 to 18 are required to go to Security Camps. Not all parents feel warm and fuzzy about this and decide to send their kids away to live/survive in the woods. That’s what Dani and Brody’s parents have decided too.
Loretta Lawrence
Nov 16, 2015 Loretta Lawrence rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was good.. No. This book was amazing! The pages sucked me in and didn't let go till I was done. I actually found myself sneaking this book everywhere just so I could finish it. Van Hull tells a captivating story which left me breathless and wanting more.

I can't wait for the sequel. I'm stuck in a book hangover and I need my sequel!!

Initially, I had no idea of what to expect in terms of the writing or the development of the story. Needless to say, Van Hull amazed me. She could hold a ca
Valerie (Dobby_Puff)
I am so disappointed with this damn book. Everything about it was wrong. It sounded like a book right up my alley and I was excited to read it since the reviews were so good. I felt like I was reading a shitty summer camp romance novel. The story was rushed and there was no character development what so ever. Jack was described as "a young Tom Cruise with grey eyes". Really? There was some great ideas in this book but it came out wrong. The ideas were there and they were actually really good! I ...more
Lex Allen
Dec 05, 2013 Lex Allen rated it really liked it
This story came very close to knockin’ my socks off and earning a 5th star, but I can’t easily or adequately identify the reason that it didn’t take my socks. Still, this is a romping good tale, exceptionally well told.

The characters were all so full of ups and downs, goods and bads, harmony and conflict, that you just know they are real people doing real things. For me, reality and plausibility are the major differences between good books and really good books. Ms. Van Hull’s story is full of v
Sep 11, 2013 Kandice rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, so here it is! (keep in mind - I'm a reader, not a writer)

This book was fantastic and unlike anything I've read before, there is a strong female protagonist, Dani, who finds herself, the love triangle wasn't cliché and only a small part of the story, and I found myself actually caring about what happened to Most of the characters, which were very well developed.

Normally I don't care for love triangles, they are extremely annoying a
R.J. Heald
This book explores a dystopian future where all the teenagers are threatened with being taken to "safety camps," where their purpose is to reproduce. Dani's parents help her to run away, and she takes her younger brother and her best friend with her. They stumble across "Tent City" and become part of the camp...

Dani is a likeable heroine - both brave and vulnerable. As Dani faced challenge after challenge in the book, I found myself rooting for her. I also enjoyed the hints of romance, as Dani a
Nov 16, 2015 Linda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Note: I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed this book. It is a dystopian with a twist. Not your normal plague or power disaster or world war. The cause of the current disaster was locusts and a government take over by an extreme religious zealot. It is hinted but not confirmed that there was more to the plague and deaths than what the government was saying. The characters were well developed. There's even a romantic triangle. I figured out early ...more
Mary Yungeberg
Dec 09, 2013 Mary Yungeberg rated it it was amazing
Tent City caught my interest right away, and never let it go. I love that the story is based in South Dakota and takes place largely in the Black Hills. The characters are engaging and it was fun to get to know them. There are twists and turns aplenty that kept the pages turning, right up to the end, when I realized I should have purchased the sequel, Red River, at the same time. Now I have to wait to find out what happens as the story continues.
Kelly did a great job! I look forward to more from
It was okay, I just wished more happened or at least a better explanation of how and why we got to this dystopia/dictatorship.

I know the author left a lot of ideas floating around to hook people for upcoming books, but I was let down because it felt like nothing really happened.

The two main male characters seem to fall for shy Dani (introverted Dani) who is anything but introverted from day 1. Really? There is room for improvement.

It was free, so I won't complain. It was even edited decently.
SueAnn Crawford
Nov 16, 2015 SueAnn Crawford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I became immersed immediately in this book, and read it continually until I completed it. The characters are well drawn, the heroine likable, and there is just enough tension in the romantic triangle to having you rooting for both of the men in her life to win her simultaneously. I suspect that a sequel is around the corner, and as the characters mature and the plague story plays out, each character will bring their particular "advancements" to the table to play their part in the unfolding story ...more
Becky Johnson
Oct 25, 2015 Becky Johnson rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook
4-4 1/2 stars. This book is a unique take on and apocalyptic/rapture style story.
I enjoyed the characters one sell and how they became stronger throughout the book.

I loved how they kept throwing something new at you to make it more interesting also.

It left me wanting more and I had to quickly purchase the next one on my kindle.
Thankyou Kelly for an amazing read!!
Jan 12, 2014 Jenny rated it really liked it
I received an ecopy of this book in exchange for a honest review.

Tent City is a start of a new dystopian series that is unlike any I've read so far. While reading it, I was actually thinking of the book In the Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. Although the plots are really not the same at all, it just had that dark, religious fervor kind of feel. The actual concept of the novel and the atmosphere of it was definitely my favorite things about Tent City!

Basically, in this future world, or
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Shut Up & Read: July Mod Pick- Tent City by Kelly Van Hull 2 13 Jul 06, 2015 10:41AM  
YA/NA FANATICS: ARR - Tent City (Tent City #1) 22 43 Apr 15, 2014 03:05PM  
Debut novel 3 17 Jan 03, 2014 08:33PM  
Book Review Depot: Book of the Month Tent City 4 10 Dec 28, 2013 08:26AM  
Apocalypse Whenever: (*closed* WINNERS!) August Giveaway #4: Tent City by Kelly Van Hull 36 78 Dec 23, 2013 09:22AM  
YA/NA FANATICS: Tent City 0.99 sale 1 2 Dec 23, 2013 08:43AM  
YA Apocalyptic an...: This topic has been closed to new comments. July BOTM Tent City by Kelly Van Hull 20 107 Dec 23, 2013 07:01AM  
  • Breeder (Arrow's Flight, #1)
  • Ice Country (The Country Saga, #2)
  • The China Pandemic (Graham's Resolution #1)
  • Enlightened (Eve #2)
  • Fast-Tracked (Fast-Track Trilogy, #1)
  • Twisted Memories (Unbinding Fate, #4)
  • Fugitives from Northwoods (The Northwoods Trilogy #1)
  • Aversion (The Mentalist Series, #1)
  • The Ruin of the World (The World Without End, #4)
  • Alora: The Wander-Jewel (Alora, #1)
  • The Believers (Breeders, #2)
  • External Forces (The Laws of Motion #1)
  • Dissidence (Dissidence, #1)
  • Apocalypticon
  • Andromeda (Andromeda #1)
  • Broken World (Broken World, #1)
  • The Clearing (Outside, #2)
  • From The Darkness (Aquila #1)

Where do we go from here? Tent City and Red River have reached further in the world than I could have ever imagined, even surprisingly finding homes in the hearts of readers I would never expect would care to hang out with Dani, Brody, and the rest of the gang in Tent City. Readers are the most amazing creatures I've ever come across
More about Kelly Van Hull...

Other Books in the Series

Tent City (2 books)
  • Red River (Tent City #2)

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