Edition| egalley courtesy of Netgalley Release| October 1st, 2014
I received this as an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
The Gatekeeper's Son follows Junya, the son of an important businessman, and more importantly, the heir of his grandfather's fortune and business. When a girl- Shoko- appears seemingly out of nowhere he learns that he's also a Gatekeeper which means... I'm not actually sure. Let me explain why:
This book was extremely confusing. I mean, for the most part, I was left absolutely lost and in the dark. And not just on one front, but on many. There's a bunch of legal and business things going on, none of which are explained in layman terms. I'm willing to bet I won't be the only one debating googling what's happening, and if it's not accessible to the average reader then people won't want to pick it up. Also, the mythology behind the series isn't explained very well either. You get the general idea of what and who everyone is, but nothing concrete.
Another strange thing was Junya's strange relationship with women. Not just one woman, but all of them, from his grandfather's secretary to his mother to Shoko. With his grandfather's secretary he admits, several times, that he dreams about her naked and that's she's his dream girl (in strange ways). I was uncomfortable reading about him even thinking these things. With his mother there's an equally strange (though thankfully less sexual) relationship. I don't even know if I can define this one. Sometimes they felt like best friends, sometimes she was his superior and "commander" of sorts (never really his mother) and other times he was her superior. I was utterly confused the whole time, especially when they both acted immature and like they were twelve years old. With Shoko a little more can be forgiven, since this is his first real relationship, but reading any scene where they were meant to be romantically together was like walking on eggshells.
So why didn't this book get a lower rating? Well, there were certain scenes that did get me interested, and the concept was generally unique. I just wish it had been done much better and that the characters had been more mature. I certainly won't be picking up the sequel, unfortunately.