Reviewed by Meghan Saldecki

Louisa lives in a world plagued with war. Nothing is the same, and it seems nothing will ever be the same again.

In order to protect her and her friend Maddie, Louisa’s parents send them to a boarding school called Country Manor School, where they have to pretend to be twin sisters. But when they arrive, things start getting weirder and weirder. First, they have to hand over all electronics and jewelry for “safe keeping.” They are told that there are no phone towers or anything to power their electronics. No phone service, television service, or internet service.

Then, they are repeatedly called the “girls of Tomorrow” and are taught outdoor surviving skills like sharp shooting, archery, making a fire, and foraging for edible plants and berries. While Louisa enjoys learning new skills, Maddie struggles to adopt.

Maddie becomes friends with a conspiracy theorist, Evelyn, and starts feeding into all the theories that her new friend spouts off. Maddie starts believing that CMS is not quite what it seems, either.

So are they just paranoid? Or is there something else going on?

I hadn’t heard much about Tomorrow Girls: Behind the Gates by Eva Gray, but I decided to give it a shot anyway, because the premise sounded very intriguing. I’m quite glad I did.

I think that Behind the Gates can be classified as middle grade fiction or juvenile young adult. The main characters are thirteen and fourteen-year-olds and their younger voices are quite evident, which did not bother me. In fact, I enjoyed reading a younger view for a change. But if you prefer the main characters to be older or act older, then this will be a con for you.

Every character had a personality, but I believe that Gray could have gone more in depth with them. However, I’m somewhat reluctant to point out this fact because I’m sure each character will continue to grow as the series go on.

The writing was simple, but great; I had a clear vision of the environment that Gray described. I do wish that Gray would have written more about the world and how the War came about and what exactly was going on. I was confused about those details, I just knew that a war was going on as the book opened.

Overall, Behind the Gates was a very good first book in a series, and I will be reading the second. If you can look past the few gripes I had and have hope for the series, like I did, I’m sure you’ll find this book quite enjoyable.

Rating: 3/5

Meghan is a 18-year-old book blogger. She likes to read and write in her spare time and would like to become a published author one day. She plans on going to college soon.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Scholastic Paperbacks. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.