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The Gathering

(Lia Fail Chronicles #1)

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  71 ratings  ·  52 reviews
The veil has been broken and our world is changing.

More than a decade has passed since the last world war left cities of glass and steel in ruin, but humanity has risen among the twisted wreckage of what once was and created villages governed by their own laws, religions and governments. One such place is Lia Fail.

While their queen, Alia Stark, prepares to welcome visitors
Paperback, 478 pages
Published August 16th 2010 by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
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Showing 1-30
4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  71 ratings  ·  52 reviews

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Kitty Austin
Sep 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing

It finally happened, World War III tore the everything apart and once it was over the survivors have been forced to pull together where they could and rebuild the world into colonies. The village of Lia Fail is the largest colony with its own queen and is settled in the Hollywood area of the Santa Monica Mountains. It has been thirteen years since the war's end and the time for the Gathering has come again. As the colonies far and wide prepare to travel to Lia Fail
Mar 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: wicked
I received a free copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads.

This is a story set in future of what was once the state of California. After the War and the years following it, villages rose from the ashes reminicent of the castle and keeps of the middle ages. For safety, each village built walls around itself to protect their citizens and maintain soldiers to protect them. Each village is self-sufficient but come together every six months for "The Gathering" - a ten day span to visit w
Brenda Perlin
Oct 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
There was a tremendous build up that kept me in great suspense. I was dying to know what bad thing was going to happen but I knew I had to be patient and wait. The characters were life-like and interesting. I was pulled in from the very first pages of this spell binding story.The writing was easy to follow and flowed well. I was entertained and at the same time impatient to know where this mysterious tale was leading. There was true life heartfelt emotion that tugged on my heartstrings and at th ...more
Kristy Griffin
Sep 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book starts with lots of character information (very important), but I promise you need to keep reading! I loved the emotional roller coaster ride that S.L. Dearing took me on. I can not wait for the next installment of this must read series.
Magen McMinimy
Jun 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Amazing… not sure it’s a strong enough word for this book.

I have read a lot of great books this year, some were even fantastic. However the depths that Dearing creates in this book is beyond all of that. I can only think of one other book that put me through all the emotions as this one did. That book would Burden of Sisyphus, but they are polar opposites in genre, however both had me crying, laughing and screaming at the pages from time to time.

Starting out I was a bit overwhelmed by the amount
Celsey Seivert
Mar 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
I received this book for an honest review...

This story was an amazing roller coaster. I laughed, cried, cringed everything. I do have to admit it does seem like a long story because there is 100+ chapters but that is because the chapters are short so dont let that run you off. Another thing is at the beginning you get introduced to a lot of people dont worry if you can not keep up with everyone all at once it will all come together the further you get in.

This story is about a huge war that hit a
Brandy Rivers
Dec 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is epic. There are a lot of characters, and a lot going on, but it's all weaves together beautifully. It's not any one genre but it shows a world torn apart by war and reawakened by magic. Normally I would go into characters and things I love, but there is so much I love.

It did take me a little while to get into the book, mostly because I was trying to piece together who went where, but once I Had that figured, I couldn't stop. The story is great, it spans a huge cast. There are magica
Novel Grounds
Jun 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book. I have had to sit a few days to get myself together and find words to describe how I truly loved this book. It was the first book to make me cry in public, with no change at not, in a long while. I mean how could one NOT cry at that point in the book? It was heartbreaking and emotional and Just *GAH* I felt for the other characters. This is THAT type of a story.

I will admit in the beginning it is a little hard to keep up with the mass of characters you meet, and I did find myself refe
Sarah Cradit
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've had The Gathering on my "to read" pile for some time, but waited to sit down and read it until I could take the time to really invest in the story. I'm glad I waited, and equally glad I found the time to do it. The Gathering is well worth the investment.

This is not your light, fluffy bathroom read. It will take your time, and your commitment, but I promise: you won't regret it. In the vein of Tolstoy in War and Peace (who created over 500 unique characters!), Dearing presents us with a larg
Katie Harder-schauer
Mar 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
If you took Divergent, A Game of Thrones, and The Stand and smushed them together, you would get The Gathering. I happened to be a big fan of all three of those books, so this was just awesome. Like A Game of Thrones, The Gathering has a large cast of characters that can be a little hard to keep track of, especially because we meet almost all of them very early on. However, there is a handy glossary of characters at the end of the book to help you out with that (also like A Game of Thrones.) and ...more
Michael Loring
Sep 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The Gathering is the first in Author S.L. Dearing’s Lia Fail Chronicles.

Set in a post apocalyptic world where World War 3 has decimated our way of life and brought us back to medieval times, pockets of humanity have formed colonies in order to survive. It’s been thirteen years since the end of the current world, so the colonies have become very sufficient in their survival, but now a new evil is rising and threatening the colony of Lia Fail and its queen, Alia Stark.

The Gathering is a time of p
Joy Whiteside
Feb 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was an incredible read that once I started I could not put down.

The pace the story moved along was the perfect speed, not to fast and not to slow. The characters were amazing and you could not help but fall in love with them and the story sucked you in and did not let go until the very end.

S.L. Dearing is an incredible author and I am going to definitely read more of her books in the future.
Penelope Bartotto
Aug 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Sometimes a book comes along that you stumble through the first few chapters, you may even start to consider not finishing it, and then wham... it starts zooming along with adventure and you're hooked. This book is one of those. I am a reader who sets a number of pages that I will read before I put a book down and come back to it later, and if when I try again I still cannot get into it... chances are it goes in the just not readable pile, and receives a Grade F. My apologies to the author that ...more
Kathleen Kelly
Mar 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Gathering is a big book that grabs you right from the beginning and doesn't let go until the end. The novel tells of the aftermath and survival after the third world war in what was once the Santa Monica Valley. There are similarities between this world and our own but it is reminiscent of the old west of California. The Gathering is a once yearly event where the people from other colonies get together for weddings/ handfasting and just to visit. Into this gathering comes evil where the peop ...more
Nov 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
AWESOME READ!!! Oh my.. I really don't know what to say about this book.. I loved reading it.. I really couldn't put it down.. Let's just say..with all the different Religion in this book.. it may help everyone understand more about it... especially Paganism/Wiccan... since alot of people assume pagan/wiccan is nothing but evil.. you must read it
Jan 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
All I can say about this amazing book, is it has a bit of everything in it for everyone. It will take you on a spectacular journey into the future while giving you some of what I feel is the romance of the past.
The best thing I can tell you get the book...grab a bottle of wine...and settle in for a wonderful adventure.
Oct 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

"The Gathering"
S.L. Dearing


Thirteen years after the last world war, the village of Lia Fail sits peacefully above the Hollywood Reservoir in the Santa Monica Mountains. The village is making ready for the fall Gathering, where the other colonies from various parts of what was once Southern California visit for ten days of fun and reminiscence. What begins as a normal Gathering, soon changes as the people of Lia Fail begin to see magic around them. Then they receive news of a horrif
Jun 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
S.L. Dearing put a book together that is definitely a different point of view on the world. It's something that you can get into and fall in love with the characters. While there are many different ones, it's easy to fall in love with them.

After the war, villages start for people to seek shelter and be around those that they have common beliefs with. Every six months, a village hosts The Gathering for every village to come together and trade with as well as visit with their friends and family.

Jan 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
I received a free copy for an honest review.

The Gathering is set in post-apocalyptic Santa Monica. The survivors, living in colonies based on religious beliefs, travel to Lia Fail every six months to attend what I consider to be the equivalent of a fair to remember lost ones and allow everyone an opportunity to catch up on news. It also serves as the backdrop for the numerous romances that take place in this story. It is a happy time for everyone, but a sinister plot from an unseen enemy threate
Sheila Ryals
Feb 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: urban, paranormal, fantasy
This book has a bit of everything and I mean everything! It is a Urban, Fantasy, Romance, with some erotica! Need to be over 17 to read this!!! The gathering is in a post apopoleptic world. This book does have violence in a sexual nature as well. Normally that bugs me, it did but it fit the storyline. The characters and there are a lot of them. are very well put together. It did take me a little bit to get into it with all the romance in the air with the children.

Once we got past all that I was
Feb 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book is so freaking amazing!! I loved every minute of this book. Alia Stark is such a great female lead character she is smart, strong, independent, and loving mother. This is a must read book!!
S Hinchcliffe
Oct 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all
loved this book.

great read.

I'd say this is very much a must read, for a fascinating socio-political outlook on today's society.
Sadie Yates
Jan 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed my entire journey with these characters as I read. It was a fun quick read. I am excited to see how the journey continues in her books to come.
Kayla Eklund
*Note: This is my husband, Seth's, review as he is helping me with my gigantic review pile.*

I would like to say that I gave this book a lot of effort. I kept coming back to it in order to finish it. But each time I picked it up to read, it failed to grab me and pull me into the hole in the page that transports me into the story. I ended up only getting about one hundred pages into it and could go no further with it. I did not finish reading it. The characters were lacking in development from pag
Mar 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
The Gathering by S.L. Dearing is a very well written book about our future. It is not, however, sci-fi, but more of a magical back to basics. I was a bit daunted by the size of the book, but was so engrossed that it took me less than two days to read. The characters are consistent and so very lovable. The story line is so full of plot twists and turns, it is like a roller coaster. Loved the fight scenes. Really, just a awful lot of fantastic stuff going on in this book. Don't miss your change to ...more
Amanda Williams
Aug 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a lovely read and once I got to grips with who was who I found myself loving it all the more. Fantastic world building.
Joood Hooligan
Mar 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: need-to-review
I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This story was quite different from anything else I've ever read. There were so many characters, and they each were important and with their own story. Sometimes I found myself having to think back and remember who each character was. Although there is a glossary of characters, looking back on a kindle isn't the easiest of things.

It starts out slowly, allowing you a chance to get used to each of the characters, so you can form a bo
Crystal w
Mar 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Well this book was really good. It takes place after a major war and there are so many communities left and each has their own religion and territory. They all get together every six months for a week. The book follows the main character Alia who has 10 kids. She runs on of the territories, the one that has the Gathering every six months. This book keeps you on your toes and is a long book. I loved it, there is a community that is just pure evil and is going after them for something. They all ar ...more
Claire Thake
Mar 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
The Gathering has been one of those books I've had on my tbr list for a while that I was interested in reading, so getting the chance to review it I jumped in with both feet and I wasn't disappointed!

Although at first I found the book different to what I had imagined, and it seemed to make me think a lot of Games of Thones. I felt a lot of characters where introduced rather quickly and sometimes I found myself getting lost as to who was who, which I was concerned about at first but it all fell i
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Shannon L. Dearing was raised in Westlake Village, California and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. She attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, then spent several years studying at Los Angeles City College’s renowned Television/ Film program. She has worked on several film projects in many capacities: directing, writing, First Asst. Director, Etc.. Shannon has been writing since grade school. Over the years ...more

Other books in the series

Lia Fail Chronicles (6 books)
  • A Wish: A Lia Fail Short Story (Lia Fail Chronicles, #1.1)
  • A Touch: A Lia Fail Short Story (Lia Fail Chronicles, #1.2)
  • A Kiss: A Lia Fail Short Story (Lia Fail Chronicles, #1.3)
  • A Storm: A Lia Fail Short Story (Lia Fail Chronicles, #1.4)
  • The Journey: From The Gathering to The Bridging - Book 1.5 of the Lia Fail Chronicles - A Short Story Collection