August 27, 2014

Astray Blog Tour: Review

Welcome to my stop on the ASTRAY blog tour! Today I'm sharing my review of the book - and don't forget to check out the other stops on the tour! The schedule is listed below.

Astray (Gated #2)

Author: Amy Christine Parker
Genre: YA Thriller/Dystopia
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers


Lyla is caught between two worlds. The isolated Community that she grew up in and the outside world that she’s navigating for the very first time. The outsiders call the Community a cult, but Pioneer miraculously survived a shooting that should have killed him. Are the faithful members right to stay true to his message? Is this just a test of faith? One thing is for sure: the Community will do anything to bring Lyla back to the fold. Trapped in a spider’s web of deception, will Lyla detect the sticky threads tightening around her before it’s too late? She’ll have to unravel the mystery of what Pioneer and the Community are truly up to if she wants to survive.

Suspenseful and chilling, Astray is Amy Christine Parker’s nerve-fraying sequel to Gated. This fast-paced psychological thriller is masterfully plotted and sure to leave goose bumps. Perfect for fans of creepy YA thrillers and contemporary fiction alike.

Astray is the gripping second installment in the young adult thriller series, Gated. The book picks up where the first left off - with Lyla having shot Pioneer and escaping the Community after a raid by police. Now Lyla's trying to piece together her life - attempting to come to terms with what Pioneer did and how she was raised - while trying to move forward in the outside world. Lyla's been taken in by the sheriff's family - including Cody, the guy who ultimately helped rescue her. Now that the Community has been exposed, Lyla's in the crosshairs between both of her worlds. The outside world holds so much promise and adventure, but the Community won't release her so easily. Pioneer and the rest of the group will do anything - whatever it takes - to bring Lyla back into their fold. Lyla is confused and overwhelmed by everything happening around her, and she finds herself being seduced back to the Community where her friends, family, and Pioneer eagerly await her. But what does Pioneer want Lyla for so badly? Just what are the Community's plans for her - and will she realize what's happening before it's too late?

I loved the first book in this series, so I was incredibly eager to read this one. I had high hopes that it would continue in the same fast-paced and chilling manner - and luckily I was not disappointed. Sometimes series start off with an amazing first book and then tend to go downhill from there. This is not one of those series. The second book was just as good - if not a bit better - than the first. Being already familiar with the characters and the circumstances that occurred beforehand, it made sliding into the novel effortless right from the start. Lyla continued to be a fantastic main character. She's afraid, confused, overwhelmed - but also smart, strong, and determined to find out the truth. I loved watching her character continue to grow in the book as she becomes more sure of herself, her beliefs, and her place in the world. She's very realistic and easy to identify with, so I found myself rooting her on throughout the whole story. The plot continues to be a twisted web of mystery, deception, suspense, and thrills - all while being tied to a contemporary issue that goes under the radar most of the time - religious cults and how they effect their followers. By mixing all of those elements together along with the quick pace and the vivid descriptions, I was swept away in Lyla's world right from the opening paragraphs. I found myself eagerly reading each page to find out what was going to happen next - and I ended up reading the whole book in one sitting. I very highly recommend this book (and series) to fans of thrillers, suspense, and dystopian fiction as well as those readers looking for a truly unique and creepy contemporary thrill ride.

 Check out the first book in the series, Gated:

You can see my review of Gated HERE.

AMY CHRISTINE PARKER writes full-time from her home near Tampa, Florida, where she lives with her husband, their two daughters, and one ridiculously fat cat. Visit her at and follow her on Twitter @amychristinepar. (Taken from Goodreads)

Author Links:

* A huge thanks to the wonderful people at Random House Children's Books for providing me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review! *

Tour Schedule:
Itching for Books                             8/26   
Me, My Shelf and I                         8/26   
A Dream Within a Dream              8/27   
Candace's Book Blog                       8/28   
Stories & Sweeties                          8/29   
The Children’s Book Review         8/31   
Evie Bookish                                    9/2    
The Hiding Spot                              8/29   
Christy's Book Addiction                9/3    
Live to Read                                     9/4    
Confessions of a Readaholic           9/5    
Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club      9/8    
Bundle of Books                               9/15   
Happy Indulgence Books               9/25   


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