I hereby predict that, sometime in the next year or so, the next big Young Adult obsession will be with the book Gone, by Michael Grant, and with the subsequent books that I hope he writes quickly because I might die if I don't know the what and the why and the how and the...well, EVERYTHING. (This is apparently the first in a series of six books.)
I also predict that it will take off like the Harry Potter and the Twilight Series, with almost as many adults reading the series as kids.
For one thing, this book is creative genius. I can take a guess at some of Grant's inspirations, but I truly hope that my doing so doesn't take away from Grant's originality, because to me this book felt 100% new, and Grant is brilliant to have woven his ideas together in such a phenomenal way.
The story is this: everyone over the age of 15 disappears one day, all in the same instant. After the initial panic, a power struggle ensues (a la Lord of the Flies). But that's not all: it turns out that some of the kids have developed certain...let's say unique...skills (a la Heroes), which help and harm in their strange, adultless environment. The story surprises despite having some familiarity, and I simply couldn't put it down. I even once tucked it under my shirt and snuck it into the ladies' room at work with me so I could continue reading. Oh, and there's even some teen love in there, too, and who doesn't love young love (No one, I tell you.)
I admit, the cover art and the summary on the book jacket are a little hokey. I can overlook the summary - after all, I thought the summaries for the Twilight series sounded ridiculous as well, so I think my distaste has more to do with my being in my thirties than anything else. That very well may be the same for the cover art, too, but I do think it will hinder the book's allure for adult readers. If you guys over at Harper Collins are reading this, you might want to consider ditching the random people on the book jacket and instead design it as it looks without the jacket on it (matte black with shiny blue title in large letters on the front). But that's just my two cents.
When it comes down to it, though, the book jacket art is pretty irrelevant. With or without it, this book kicks some serious ass. And you don't have to be a young adult to think so.