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The Gathering

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3.56  ·  Rating Details ·  1,575 Ratings  ·  74 Reviews
When fifteen-year-old Nathanial moves to a sinister town that has been bruised by an ancient evil, he finds himself one of those Chosen to fight the cycle of darkness.
Paperback, 264 pages
Published December 1st 1996 by Puffin Books (first published 1993)
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(showing 1-30)
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Emmajayne
No.

That's all I can say about this book.

No.

I'll make it quite clear I did not choose to read this book. My school did.
To me, Isobelle Carmody's 'The Gathering' was like that episode of NCIS that insipired a double murder. Literally, that bad.
All I can say is there was only one character I liked in this novel, he had four legs and a tail. And he died.

R.I.P. the Tod.
Lauren
THIS BOOK IS TERRIBLE. IT WAS A WASTE OF MY TIME. I wasn’t expecting much since I had to read this for school. That’s all I have to say.
Elizabeth Newton
Sep 12, 2015 Elizabeth Newton rated it really liked it
The Gathering is the first book by Isobelle Carmody that I have read. I read it because I was teaching a year 11 English class who were studying it at the time. I had to finish it quickly so that I could be of assistance to the students in their analysis tasks and as it is a full length, small-text novel, I thought this would be a struggle. But it wasn’t! I found it a real page turning book. Not only because of the nice short chapters, but also because of the way Carmody writes. There are some l ...more
Nicky
I took this book on holiday with me one year (possibly 1996). As you can probably appreciate I could only take a limited number of books away with me, so it was especially galling when this one turned out to be completely shit. I could've packed two Sweet Valley High books for the suitcase room taken up by this thing.
Rebecca
Jul 15, 2009 Rebecca rated it it was ok
The idea of being an outsider in school has been done to death and done more skillfully than in this book. The idea of school being evil and some kind of gateway to hell has also been done and done better than in this book. The characters are all awkward young adults with a few twists to their personalities thrown in in order to create some facade of character depth. Not a fan.
Jill Smith
Natanial has moved yet again with his mother to a new town. Only this time he has a feeling of dread as they draw closer to Chestnut. It is a model town with crime almost eliminated from its streets but there is a sinister undercurrent in the town. The school Three North, looks like a concentration camp. The building is cold and the stench from the nearby slaughterhouse almost unbearable, although none of his fellow students or teachers seems to notice. Three North hides a terrible past where a ...more
Deb
May 29, 2016 Deb rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book by Isobelle Carmody that I have read.

And I was not impressed.

I found the characters irritating, the story line too far strung out and much too dark for a young audience.

The darkness of the story was probably my biggest issue with The Gathering considering it's intended audience. There was a particular scene which was far too graphic and unnecessary, those of you who have read it will know to which one I am referring.

As a librarian I like to read wide and varied and books
...more
Lauren
Nov 24, 2010 Lauren rated it did not like it
Such a disappointment. Nathaniel is an annoying character. He's supposedly smart but he misses really obvious stuff. And the concept is stupid, slow moving and boring. It's like an idea for a short story that has been forcibly lengthened into a book.
And the most annoying thing about it was that because it's Isobelle Carmody and I know she's so clever it made me hang on all the way to the end. Waste. Of. Time.
Maybe... I would have enjoyed it more if I was a teenager, but I wouldn't really want a
...more
Renee
Nov 15, 2012 Renee rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
I want to like Isobelle Carmody, I do. I've read quite a few of her books. I and loved Obernywton. But then not the rest of the series so much. So I read this book, thinking it was a fairly short stand alone novel. But I still didn't like it that much. I mean it was OKAY, but not great or even good. And I'm a bit disappointed.
I found the story very disjointed, as if things needed to be explained more, or there needed to be more background story. The thing with fantasy is to make a story believa
...more
Emmie
May 17, 2016 Emmie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dar
May 12, 2009 Dar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading this book back in High School so many years ago & really loving it. Don't most of us feel like the 'outsider' in High School? I think alot of teens could relate to it.
After seeing it pop up again on a friend's list I think I'll give it a re-read! I really like Isobelle Carmody's writing style, but have not thought to read any of her books since school, I think it's time to track some down.
Changjun Kim
May 17, 2016 Changjun Kim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tulsi
Oct 13, 2008 Tulsi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An incredibly dark tale about young adults in, I'm assuming, and Australian town. It verges on the supernatural, and to me at least, seem to talk about personal strength and individual power against the majority. Multi-layered and complex, this is a story for a very mature teenager.

I read this as a kid, and was spell bound.
Julie
Nov 26, 2010 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Indi
Sep 23, 2010 Indi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is one of my personal favourites. It is so captivating, scary and epic that I could not put it down. Don't worry, the cover does not do it justice. Isobelle Carmody is a genius and this book is one of her best.
★
Feb 06, 2010 rated it liked it
A very smart, suspenseful and creepy book.
Worth the read.
Trinity
Jan 24, 2017 Trinity rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was the worst thing I've read. Yes, I read it for school ages ago and it's horribleness scarred me for life. It was all rushed and confusing. I don't have much to say except (view spoiler)
Caitlin MacEwan
Jan 23, 2017 Caitlin MacEwan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the first books I fell in love with at 14. Some lines really resonated with me and I still think of this book fondly.
Lan Chan
Jan 17, 2016 Lan Chan rated it really liked it
*** Actual Rating 3.5/5

The writing was clear and the premise was interesting. I would have liked to see a bit more world building as I found myself asking questions that were never resolved. I enjoyed the themes in this one even if at times I wanted the main characters to have a bit more agency.

This started out being a 5 star read because of the premise but the closer I got to the end of the novel the more some of the aspects began to bug me. One of my pet hates is the use of cryptic messages f
...more
Mia
May 22, 2013 Mia rated it liked it
Shelves: ipad, books-i-own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
John Williams
Dec 20, 2015 John Williams rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The gathering is the story of disaffected youth gone feral. The narrator, Nathanial feels somewhat odd when he first views Three North, his new school and first impressions are sometimes the most accurate especially in a district with the pretentious name of Chestnut. Throw in a group of weird characters, mostly students and a teacher likened to Hitler on a bad hair day – he doesn’t have any, and the cast is set for the unending battle between good and evil.
Written by the main protagonist first
...more
Kristen Rogers
I read this book when I was ten and it made such an impression that I completely forgot what it was called until someone in a facebook group reminded me today.

I did remember certain aspects of this book though: totems, slaughterhouses, evil principals, fire. I thought about this book after Inception came out because the totems used triggered a distant memory of this book. I thought about it again a few years later when I read The Devil in the White City (there aren't many slaughterhouses mention
...more
Lauren
Jul 27, 2012 Lauren rated it really liked it
An odd book. I remember it kind of aggravating me during the time I read it. Explanations were too scarce, and the plot seemed to meander into an underwhelming climax - at least, this is what I remember. It's been years since I read it. And yet there's a lot about the book that's stuck in my mind since then, like the dog, and the special object found on the principles desk, and that moment when Nathaniel senses the undercurrent evil about the town when he goes for a run. These small moments were ...more
Cdunilibrary
May 31, 2012 Cdunilibrary rated it it was amazing
Past winner of the Children's Book Council of Australia - Older Readers. When Nathanial and his mother move to Cheshunt, he immediately senses something wrong. Violent gangs patrol the streets, feral dogs roam at night, and the oppressive stench from the abattior lingers over the school.
Soon Nathanial learns that his presence is no accident. As he uncovers the dark secrets of Cheshunt's past, events spiral desperately out of control. He and his new friends must confront phantoms from their past
...more
Rebecca
May 29, 2013 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such an enthralling read, one of those books you don't want to put down. I was worried because I just couldn't get into Obernewtyn at all, but this book was much better written and had more engaging characters in my opinion. I especially love that it read a bit like a mystery. The pieces would fall into place around the time I figured it out for myself.

I thought the ending went by a bit too quickly, but it didn't really matter because what needed to be said already had been. Overall, a great, e
...more
St Stephen's C C
When Nathanial and his mother move to the quiet, safe streets of Cheshunt, he immediately senses something wrong. Violent gangs patrol the streets, feral dogs roam at night, and the oppressive stench from the abattoir lingers over the school. Soon Nathanial learns that his presence is no accident. As he uncovers the dark secrets of Cheshunt's past, and event spiral desperately out of control, he and his new friends must confront phantoms from their past in the battle to stop the Gathering and it ...more
Megan Hietala
Dec 16, 2013 Megan Hietala rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 6th-grade-q2
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Asavari
Sep 18, 2012 Asavari rated it liked it
Recommends it for: There are probably similar but better books
Recommended to Asavari by: Part of the course material for Young Adult Literature
Not sure if 3 stars, or 3.5, was written relatively well with a couple of repetitive nuances, just the type of story that it was wasn't my thing. Ugh, and Carmody tries to add in tonnes of these little themes like Seth's alcoholism, the supernatural, parental abuse etc, but none of them are explored and could have easily been cut out. I read this for school in Young Adult Literature (we had an Australian focus) and just studying it more makes me dislike it more, it is totally not worth studying.
Maureen
I possibly wasn't in the right head space to read this dark horror novel so different to most other Isobelle novels. I found it interesting that the theme of internal darkness is repeated later in Alyzon Whitestarr, a novel of which I am very fond, but the violence and the gloom of this one wasn't for me. It's beautifully written and Nathanial is an appealing character. There is also a gentle YA mystery/thriller element. I think teens will devour this.
Katey
Aug 10, 2010 Katey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Young Adults
Recommended to Katey by: My High School
I had to read this book for my year 9 english class and from what I remember I really enjoyed it. Even though we only had to read it in class time, I would read it when I got home because I liked it so much and couldn’t wait to read only a small amount each class. The only part I hated was when the dog got burnt. I will definitely endeavour to read this again so I can give it a better review and see if I’m still anything like my 14 year old self.
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What's The Name o...: YA a boy's pet dog is set on fire? [s] 13 171 Nov 18, 2014 01:52AM  
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Isobelle Carmody began the first novel of her highly acclaimed Obernewtyn Chronicles while she was still in high school. The series has established her at the forefront of fantasy writing in Australia.

In addition to her young-adult novels, such as the Obernewtyn Chronicles and Alyzon Whitestarr, Isobelle's published works include several middle-grade fantasies. Her still-unfinished Gateway Trilogy
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“Strength without compassion is soulless and cruel. Weakness, too, has its place, for it brings understanding.” 2 likes
“Laughter is a powerful weapon for it carries the light. To laugh is to defy the darkness.” 1 likes
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