Review: Dark Territory by J. Gabriel Gates & Charlene Keel

Dark Territory by J. Gabriel Gates/Charlene Keel
Series:  The Tracks (# 1)
Release Date: July 1, 2011
Publisher:  HCI Teens
Pages: 504
Source:  Publisher

Star-crossed Love, martial arts, and supernatural evil meet at the abandoned tracks in the deceptively quaint town of Middleburg…When Ignacio Torrez moved from the rough streets of Los Angeles to a small town dead smack in the middle of nowhere, he never expected to find himself in the midst of a gang war. But, he soon learns, these are no ordinary gangs. The wealthy, preppie Toppers on one side of the tracks and the working-class Flatliners on the other adhere to a strict code of honor and use their deadly martial arts skills, taught to them by the wise Master Chin, to battle one another for pride, territory, and survival. When Raphael, leader of the Flatliners, falls for Aimee, a Topper girl, the rival gangs prepare for a bloody, all-out war. The only hope for peace between them lies within the dark territory of the abandoned train tunnels where the tracks cross. Under the direction of the mysterious and frightening Magician, the awesome power within the crossing sends the rivals on a terrifying mystical quest to fight the malevolent force that threatens the existence of Middleburg.


Review:  When my daughter asked to borrow my ereader, I almost felt my heart stop. As an adult, I can and do read pretty much anything I want to. Mostly leaning towards paranormal romance to erotica. These are NOT acceptable for a 12 year old. My list of acceptable books for her to read, wasn’t very long. So, off I went in search of something she would like and I could approve of her reading.

Dark Territory did not disappoint. With it’s large cast of characters, there were many chances to find someone to connect with. The eerie thing for me, was just how set in reality it was at times.

Everyone can relate to someone. Were you the popular girl who got everything without lifting a finger? Or the book smart girl who got overlooked? How about the handsome quarterback that everyone wanted to be seen with? Or maybe, just maybe you were the guy who had to make his way out of the locker every afternoon. Never to realize that in the end each one of us, just wanted the same thing . . to be accepted, to be loved, to be appreciated for the things that you CAN do, and not dismissed for the things you CAN NOT do.

I read this book has been compared to Romeo and Juliette and West Side Story. I can agree. Even throwing in there Grease (which “plays” a part in the story). All deal with what happens when two young adults fall for someone considered “too good” or “too bad” for them.

When there is a clear line drawn through the middle of town, which side do you fall too? What happens when that line takes two people considered to be the best of friends, and splits them? Now add in there some supernatural events and you have on your hands a fast pace read that just might leave you with white knuckles. Let us not leave out, that the “adults” in this book . . well, they give us a good showing of just how ruthless some can be to keep their edge.

Now, on to book to Two to see where this tale can go next.

Favorite Quote:  LOL Moment:

“Hey,” she replied softly as he walked closer. A smile touched her solemn features. “Those were some pretty slick moves back there.”

“You must be talking about Ignacio’s, not mine.”

“I was,” she said and laughed.

Raphael laughed, too. “Ouch.”