The Crimson Gateby Whitney A. Miller
Harlow Wintergreen has been named the new Matriarch of VisionCrest, the powerful religious organization previously led by her father. There’s just one problem. The real Harlow is trapped inside a Cambodian temple, and her double, the evil Isiris, is out in the world masquerading as her. With VisionCrest at her command, Isiris moves all the pieces into position for her genocidal endgame. To stop her twin from unleashing a super-virus designed to eradicate civilization, Harlow must escape the temple and reunite with the Resistance. But in trying to save the people she loves, Harlow gets a taste of the power Isiris wields . . . and her battle against the horror takes on a new and dangerous dimension.
Gr 10 Up—This series installment gives readers a bloody and inventive second look at a world gone awry in the wake of a cult's international takeover. Harlow Wintergreen is a teenager torn between two loves and in hot pursuit of the evil, blood-thirsty goddess Isiris, who has hijacked her appearance and dreams. Now the real Harlow must track Isiris across a violent and virus-riddled world to save her friends and the rest of humanity before the apocalypse arrives and Isiris remakes the world in her own horrific image. Miller presents Harlow as an independent female protagonist through two temporally alternating narratives, one set "before" Harlow's push past the titular gate and one set "after." The effect is slightly jarring but in keeping with the overall atmosphere, expertly creating additional suspense. Although the story does prominently feature a love triangle, the protagonist's internal and external struggle with it is a refreshing departure from the genre's norm. Those who can tolerate torture scenes and a certain level of gore will enjoy this novel. Although this book isn't recommended for the squeamish, fans of The Walking Dead who wish for more world travel and cult conspiracies will likely be pleased. VERDICT A lush and grisly apocalyptic adventure across several continents and worlds.—Emily Grace Le May, Mt. Pleasant Library - Providence Community Library, RI
The story of a bizarre cult morphs into a horror novel in this sequel to The Violet Hour (2014).Harlow should have become the Matriarch of VisionCrest, the new worldwide religion founded by her father, but Isiris, the evil goddess the cult worships, has trapped her in a temple in Cambodia. Somehow Harlow must find the single door among thousands that will allow her to escape from the labyrinthine temple. Meanwhile, through the eyes of Isiris, she sees the murders the goddess commits, having taken her place in the outside world. Masquerading as Harlow, Isiris kills thousands of innocents in horrific ways, effectively destroying civilization as we know it. Once outside the temple, Harlow meets Parker, a girl who joins with her to find Hayes, now the leader of the faltering Resistance. The pair travels across China and Russia, avoiding the death-dealing Watchers who enforce the wishes of the goddess. Miller alternates chapters between Harlow's time trapped in the temple and what happens after she escapes, a device that disrupts the flow of the narrative. This novel is full-on horror, the gruesome murders so horrific they might make Stephen King blush. The story concludes with a hint of parallel worlds, leaving readers to wonder if there may be yet a third novel to come. Extreme gore and exciting suspense in a highly strange package. (Horror. 14-18)
- North Star Editions
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- Product dimensions:
- 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.70(d)
- Age Range:
- 12 - 18 Years
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Meet the Author
Whitney A. Miller (San Francisco, CA) lives in San Francisco with her husband and a struggling houseplant. When she's not having international adventures, she's dreaming or writing about them. The Violet Hour is her debut novel. Visit her online at http://www.whitneyamiller.com/.
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'The Crimson Gate' is an exciting sequel in a gripping young adult science fiction/dystopian series. It continues to follow our main character - Harlow - as she attempts to find and stop her evil twin before she wreaks chaos on the world. Harlow's double, Isiris, is acting as Harlow and was just named the Matriarch of VisionCrest - a very powerful religious group that her father had led. Isiris is taking advantage of her new position within the organization and plans to unleash a supervirus that will kill all the members of VisionCrest and erase all traces of the group's existence. Harlow must find a way to escape the temple she's being held captive in, and then she has to find the Resistance - all before Isiris' plans are acted out. Just like the first book in the series, this installment was a phenomenal mix of several different genres, specifically dystopias and thrillers. The plot picks up pretty much where the first book stopped, which made it easier for me to fall back inside the world the author created and to experience the story alongside Harlow. The story continued to be very original and hard to describe. Harlow continues to be a fantastic main character, even with her obvious flaws, but she also is a devoted friend and daughter who will fight for what she believes in and will do whatever it takes to make everything right. She's very smart, strong - both emotionally and physically, and she's willing to risk her own life for everyone - from the people of VisionCrest to the general population of her land. I found the rest of the characters to be well written, if not a bit predictable at times. Isiris proves to be a worthy adversary with strength, intelligence, and a plan of her own. Aside from these small predictabilities, the rest of the story was well written with tons of suspense and twists, which will keep readers on their toes. The author wrote with great attention to detail, vivid imagery, and a fast pace, which kept me eagerly reading to see what was going to happen next. Overall, this was a unique and fascinating sequel that fans of several genres will enjoy getting their hands on - highly recommended! Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.