Sixteen-year-old Maya is just an ordinary teen in an ordinary town. Sure, she doesn't know much about her background - the only thing she really has to cling to is an odd paw-print birthmark on her hip - but she never really put much thought into who her parents were or how she ended up with her adopted parents in this tiny medical-research community on Vancouver Island.
Strange things have been happening in this claustrophobic town - from the mountain lions that have been approaching Maya to her best friend's hidden talent for "feeling" out people and situations, to the sexy new bad boy who makes Maya feel . . . . different. Combine that with a few unexplained deaths and a mystery involving Maya's biological parents and it's easy to suspect that this town might have more than its share of skeletons in its closet.
The Gathering surprised me with its mysteries and riddles that wove together to form a beautiful story. Armstrong created a setting full of unanswered questions and secrets. Maya and her best friend, Daniel, both seem to have a 'knack'. She has a power to help animals heal faster and for some reason, the wildlife of the tiny town she lives in all seem to be attracted to her. Daniel seems to have a skill for detecting if someone has evil intentions or not, something that some people just have a better skill for than others, but Daniel is special in the fact that he is never wrong.
Armstrong started off with a girl, a death and a cat. She turned a seemingly normal paranormal tale into something magical. The mysteries in Maya's small town keeps you on your toes, making you question every action taken, every event that occurs. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, but the one thing that made me rate this book lower is that the ending isn't really an end. Only one mystery is solved among the thousands that Armstrong created, it leaves you begging for more like every other book, but for me, the ending didn't leave me satisfied.
To me the end of the story didn't conclude anything, it left everything hanging, as if Armstrong wrote a story and then cut it in the middle to be published as two different books. However despite the not very satisfying end, I enjoyed the world that Armstrong created. The animals living in the forest in Maya's town intrigued me and kept me interested, the 'new kids in town' pulled you in and made you make wild guesses as to who they were and what they are capable of doing. In the whole, I really enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to paranormal loving readers that want something a little mysterious and dangerous.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars