Ashleigh Paige

I'm a full-time college sophomore pursuing my B.A. in English with hopes of one day working as an editor. Cats, musicals, documentaries about cults/disasters/tragedies, and curse words are just a few of my favorite things. Also, check out our blog or I WILL FIND YOU.

Arclight

Arclight - Josin L. McQuein First off, this is SHINY. No joke. Mine is only an ARC and doesn’t have all the shininess the finished copy will, but it’s definitely shiny and therefore, you should look at it and be amazed. Concerning the actual CONTENT of the book, it’s also pretty shiny, but I use it in a different way. Arclight is loads of fun and is a great book to read on a lazy Sunday or during a sleepless night, but what you see is exactly what you get and once you put a lot of thought into it, it loses some of its shine.The worldbuilding in terms of putting together the current condition of the Arclight, helping readers visualize it, and developing the creatures known as the Fade is phenomenal. McQuein’s prose brings it to life and makes it soar above all else. The picture you have of all those elements when the novel begins is nothing like what you will see when the novel ends, which is the kind of development I love seeing. Arclight is one of the few novels I will call a true dystopia: the people live the life they do without questioning why it runs the way it does, but their society is much more dysfunctional than they can imagine until the truth finally comes out. Unfortunately, this and many other twists of the novel can be seen coming from a good ways away.Marina is okay as a main character and good enough to root for, but often, she’s simply exists. Same with almost all the other characters of the novel, be it her love interest Tobin (with whom, by the way, she has a badly developed romance with), her best friend Anne-Marie, or anyone else. They’re all simply there without much dimension, but they’re the rare kinds of characters you’re okay with despite such issues. The Fade become the standout characters of the novel, their society its most fully realized, memorable element. So much love for the Fade, seriously.Funny thing about me: I hate math, but if I think there’s an issue with a book’s timeline, I’ll happily do math to make sure all is well. With Arclight, Tobin and Marina find a picture of Tobin’s fifth-great grandfather that says it came from ’23. Whether that’s 1923 or 2023 or beyond, I don’t know, but I assume 1923 because it apparently wasn’t that long ago when people lived normally, but it was also a good while ago in terms of who is alive/dead. While defining thirty years as the difference between generations because it feels right, I found that would put this novel somewhere around 2150 in terms of the time period. Can we really get to this point in 140 years or so? Well, that’s up to you.Another possible solution is that my math is completely wrong, as I often discover it is when I get back a math test I failed, and in which case you can ignore that last paragraph. Because it’s so iffy, that issue doesn’t factor into my rating.McQuein’s way with words is also promising because her next book, Premeditated, is one I’ve been anticipating eleventy bajillion times more than Arclight and fits my tastes more. Is it October 2013 yet? Because I want me some character-driven vengeance book. Anyway, fans of sci-fi who have been looking forward to Arclight for a while are sure to love it.