Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Gated Blog Tour: Tens List & Giveaway


Do the gates keep the unchosen out or the chosen in?

In Mandrodage Meadows, life seems perfect. The members of this isolated suburban community have thrived under Pioneer, the charismatic leader who saved them from their sad, damaged lives. Lyla Hamilton and her parents are original members of the flock. They moved here following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, looking to escape the evil in the world. Now seventeen, Lyla knows certain facts are not to be questioned:

Pioneer is her leader.

Will is her Intended.

The end of the world is near.

Like Noah before him, Pioneer has been told of the imminent destruction of humanity. He says his chosen must arm themselves to fight off the unchosen people, who will surely seek refuge in the compound's underground fortress--the Silo.

Lyla loves her family and friends, but given the choice, she prefers painting to target practice. And lately she'd rather think about a certain boy outside the compound than plan for married life in the Silo with Will. But with the end of days drawing near, she will have to pick up a gun, take a side, and let everyone know where she stands.



AMY CHRISTINE PARKER earned her degree in elementary education at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, and then proceeded to try out many different jobs, including collectible doll maker, fondue waitress, and inner-city schoolteacher. It wasn't until she became a mom and began making up bedtime stories for her children that she finally realized what she was meant to do. Now Amy writes full-time from her home near Tampa, Florida, where she lives with her husband, their two daughters, and one ridiculously fat cat. Her first novel, GATED, debuts with Random House Children's August 6, 2013. Visit her at

Ten Things/Events That Influenced GATED

1. The Mayan Calendar’s December 21, 2012 End of the World Prophecy: I was amazed by how many people were seriously preparing for it. That mindset-that many had, played heavily into creating the characters inside the Community in my book.

2. Extreme Underground Bunkers: There are multiple shows on at any given time about these new, expansive and luxurious underground apocalypse shelters. The Silo in my book was patterned after one built for a company called VIVOS. You can see what it looks like here:

3. Gated Communities: I live in the South where there are a plethora of these. I wanted the Community in my book to live in a version of one mainly because I find the whole gate thing sort of ludicrous. It won’t keep out people intent on breaking and entering or even people who are trying to solicit business and yet some people tend to feel safer if their house is behind one. I rent a house in a gated suburban community myself and there have been multiple break ins and more than a few solicitors who’ve made it past the front gate. In fact, many times I’m the one who can’t get in right away because the gate breaks down. To me they just seem to serve as a status thing and I find that to be highly distasteful on the whole. Putting my cult in a gated suburban-like development was my way of poking fun at them and their actual lack of real safety.

4. The horse my daughter rode in her lessons: My daughter loves horses and horseback riding. When I wrote the book she was riding a horse named Pockets. I absolutely love that horse. It’s gentle and kind and has the most adorable lower lip that droops open all the time. That lower lip became one of the distinguishing characteristics of my main character, Lyla’s, horse, Indy, in the book.

5. The Final Transcripts of Jonestown: I read over these at least a dozen times. Jim Jones’ decision to force the group into taking poison because he was about to be exposed-his paranoia in those final moments-all heavily influenced the final chapters of the book.

6. Cult Leaders like David Koresh, Charles Manson, Marshal Applewhite, and Wayne Bent: I watched hours and hours of videos featuring these men. Pioneer, the leader of the Community in my book is a hybrid of all of them. I wanted him to share the seemingly nurturing aspects of David Koresh, the edge of danger and charisma of Manson, and the seriously creepy vibe of Wayne Bent.

7. Amish Furniture Catalogs: I borrowed the idea of the Community earning a living from furniture crafting from them.

8. The Waco Seige: I used it as inspiration for the raid on the Community.

9. Christina’s World (the painting) by Andrew Wyeth: In one of the original drafts of the book I included this painting as part of Lyla’s lesson time with Pioneer.Although it didn’t make the final cut I felt that the picture really captured a sense of deep longing--of what Lyla yearns for: home and safety—even if that safety’s merely a perceived one, but because of her doubts about the Community it’s as if she’s always on the outside looking in. It helped me understand her as a character better.

10. 9/11: This date played heavily into the construction of this story although it’s only mentioned in one sentence in the second chapter. I really feel that for groups like the one in my book, big tragedies like it cement their conviction that the world is in it’s final death throes. In recent history, there is no other single event that’s effected us quite so deeply and so I knew that by using it it would be easier for the reader to understand why Lyla’s family decided to join the Community.

One Winner will get:GATED T-Shirt | Owl Bracelet | Owl Ring | Bookmark 
One Winners will get:Signed Audio Book + Bookmark 
5 Winners will get:
10 Winners will get:
Signed bookmarks (open internationally)
Must be 13+ To Enter – Shipping in the US Only, except for the 10 Bookmarks which will ship International. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thanks so much for being on the tour Ashley!

  2. I really enjoyed this one! Its interesting to see what influenced her for the book. Great post. ~Kristina


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