Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Review: Arclight by Josin L. McQuien

  • Publisher: Greenwillow Books (HarperCollins Imprint)
  • Publication date: 4/23/2013
  • Source: ARC provided by the publisher for review
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository

No one crosses the wall of light . . . except for one girl who doesn’t remember who she is, where she came from, or how she survived. A harrowing, powerful debut thriller about finding yourself and protecting your future—no matter how short and uncertain it may be.

The Arclight is the last defense. The Fade can’t get in. Outside the Arclight’s border of high-powered beams is the Dark. And between the Light and the Dark is the Grey, a narrow, barren no-man’s-land. That’s where the rescue team finds Marina, a lone teenage girl with no memory of the horrors she faced or the family she lost. Marina is the only person who has ever survived an encounter with the Fade. She’s the first hope humanity has had in generations, but she could also be the catalyst for their final destruction. Because the Fade will stop at nothing to get her back. Marina knows it. Tobin, who’s determined to take his revenge on the Fade, knows it. Anne-Marie, who just wishes it were all over, knows it.

When one of the Fade infiltrates the Arclight and Marina recognizes it, she will begin to unlock secrets she didn’t even know she had. Who will Marina become? Who can she never be again?


My Thoughts

I feel like I start so many reviews this way, but OMG that cover!! Seriously, in real life it's shiny and awesome!! This book just screams "READ ME!!" I was also totally intrigued by how Marina is the only person who has ever come back from the Fade alive. I needed to know how she did it and what was so special about her. I want to say that I absolutely loved this book, but it was another book I was too hyped up for, that was good, but didn't blow my mind or anything.

Marina wasn't a particularly interesting character. I mean, I was interested in knowing about her, but reading from her POV wasn't super exciting. She has no memory of before she was in the Arclight so I guess that has a lot to do with it. We only get what she knows, and her relationships with people there, which aren't many. She has one good friend, but the others seem afraid of her, or just disgusted with because they blame her for the Fade attacks. They would rather just let them have her and be done with it. She doesn't really seem to care all that much though really. Then when she discovers that the Fade might not be what everyone thinks, she is on a mission to try to help the one she starts to call Rue. I do think that she had some good character growth though, and by the end I liked her. She wasn't a particularly strong or totally badass character to me, but she was likeable enough.

Tobin is the love interest, and I really did like him. He seemed so broody and unfriendly  at first, but as I got to know him, I really started to like him. He was sweet and sensitive, but still every bit the tough guy too. He has a lot going on in that head of his so I understood why he acted the way he did. I think that he was really brave too. And I enjoyed watching as he fell for Marina. This would have been one of those books where alternating POV's would have served it well I think. I would have loved getting to be in Tobin's head at times. I liked uncovering the layers of Tobin, and thought he was a pretty great character.

What I was hoping would be a super creepy and chilling read really wasn't, and that was a bit of a disappointment to me. I admit, at first the Fade were kinda scary, more in a tingles down your spine type way, but still scary. That didn't last long though. Once we get more into the book and learned a little more about them, they weren't creepy at all. I will tell you that they are super awesome though. I was totally intrigued by the Fade, and perhaps that is better than being creeped out by them in a way.

There were parts of this book that I found to be a bit predictable, but I still really enjoyed it. I would have love a little bit more world building, though I am heavily a character reader, I do like my books to hold up in all aspects, and this one was lacking a bit with that. I liked the romance and thought it was done spectacularly, and I liked the idea of the Fade and how things happened. I would have liked a little more background, but since she didn't have any of her memories I understand why we didn't get it. There will be another book, so maybe we will learn more in that one. Overall, it was a great book that I read rather quickly and I felt satisfied with the ending, but am glad there will be another book.




24 comments:

  1. Just read Eileen's review and totally bummed me off... But I'm so glad you liked this AMY! Getting my hopes higher again *fingers crossed* it's seems to me that the romance is quite different in everyone's perspective. Well written review Amy! Let's hope this MC doesn't do something stupid....

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    1. This seems to be a book that is getting very mixed reviews. I hope that if you read it, you enjoy it.

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  2. I'm glad you liked this better than I did, Amy. I really didn't think the main character was impressive either. She was likable, but she lacked that sparked. I thought this book would be bad-ass too, but I was quite disappointed when it ended up boring me for almost half of the book. I needed more info on the world building and background too.
    Anyways, great review as always, Amy!

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    1. Yeah, there really needed to be better world building. I liked Tobin and Rue, and Marina wasn't bad, she just wasn't super interesting either. I am curious as to what will happen next though. This one ended fine, but I can see how much more can be done with the story.

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  3. Bleh! I have heard that the first few chapters of this one are pretty creepy but that's it. I've read 3 reviews of this today & yesterday and I have to say that I don't like the sounds of Marina AT ALL. She sounds like someone I would absolutely hate. Lovely review chickie, I'll be staying away from this one.

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    1. I definitely don't think this is one that you would like. You are best to not even try to read it lol!!

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  4. The memory wipe can always be an issue. It acquires a certain skill from authors that not many possess. I have never paid taht much attention to this book, but your review just sucked me in into the point that I even read the blurb. It sounds awesome! I think it's easier for us to like boys and love interests more than the girls in books, but likeable is better than i-hated-her-guts-with-pure-passion type of emotions ;-) I wouldn't have added this to my TBR pile, but something about the way you talked about it intrigues me so yeah:) thanks, Amy!

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  5. I'm seeing this one a lot today on blogs. I guess its cause its release day :)

    Great review. I'd love to pick this one up!

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  6. It's too bad this one was lacking a bit of OOMPH. I have an ARC of it but I haven't felt a strong urge to pick it up. I guess I"ll wait for now since I have so many other books I REALLY want to read. Maybe one of these days I'll see a review that convinces me to pick it up sooner. I'm glad you still mostly enjoyed it though!

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  7. Ooooo, glad you enjoyed it!! I've been so excited for this one... Which probably started because of the gorgeous cover!! But after the mixed reviews I wasn't so sure. After you review, I think I'll give it a chance. :)

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  8. I'm glad you enjoyed it other, but too bad it didn't quite live up to the hype.

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  9. Fantastic review, Amy! I agree, Marina was kind of a dull character in retrospect, but I'm not a character heavy reader like you so I was more irked about the predictability too! OMG I was the same with Tobin! I really HATED him at first and then afterwards I was more "Meh" towards him. But I'm glad you enjoyed this one more than I did. :)

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  10. You know, I've read several reviews for this and still don't quite know what Arclight is about. lol
    Sorry it didn't quite live up to your expectations. Great review!

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  11. Oh you should have taken a picture of the real life cover! I could see it being really neat! Wow Marina sounds boring! I haven't been seeing the best reviews of this book at all so I decided to skip it for now. I dont think I'm in the mood for it after Taken and Teh Ward lol. I know they're different but I would expect a my creepier read than what it is. Such lost potential!

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  12. I'm just going to have to break down and read this book. I'm a little iffy about it, but I feel like I have been waiting forever for this beauty!

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  13. This is the first review I've read for this book. I actually wasn't sure if I wanted to read it, but the cover is killer and it totally makes me want to. However, I think I probably skip this one. Marina doesn't like a character I would love. I have to be connected with the MC or I just won't like the book at all. Marina doesn't sound bad from the way you describe her, but I just don't think she and I would ever click. Tobin is a whole 'nother story! I think I would love him and maybe if the book was also in his POV, I might change my mind on picking this one up. Sorry to hear that you were disappointed by the lack of creepy, that totally sucks but I'm glad you enjoyed this book, nonetheless! Hopefully the next book will give you more! Awesome review!!

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  14. I'm not sure this is one I would pick up, but that cover is pretty cool.

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  15. I was hoping you like one more. I liked the back round history and the web of lies. Nice review.

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  16. I think I liked this one a bit more than you did, Amy, although I totally agree with many of the things you pointed out. I liked Marina fine but didn't love her, and I wasn't surprised by the plot twist, either. I'm interested in seeing what happens in book two, though! And hey, there's nothing wrong with squeeing over a gorgeous cover. ;)

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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  17. The cover is super cool but I'm not sure it's my thing especially if you found it predictable. Thanks for sharing. Great review.

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  18. LOL -- I just read a different book with a blah heroine and a memory wipe. I think I'll skip this and read her other book, Premeditated, which sounds like more my thing.
    Thanks for a very helpful review :)

    You can find me here: Jen @ YA Romantics

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  19. Only 3.5 and the Fades weren't very creepy huh? Well I still want to read this one a lot!

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  20. I think I might be the only one who isn't a fan of this cover, but meh. Anyways, I'm so over predictable books.. sometimes it just sucks the fun out of it all. Though it's great you were still able to enjoy it! Great review!
    - Farah @ MajiBookshelf

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  21. I'm glad you enjoyed this one mostly, despite it's few setbacks! I have to admit I'm still curious about it but I think I'll holdoff for a bit. Weak/meh MC's are something I have to brace myself for and sort of dive in when the mood is right LOL Anyways I like the sound of the Fade and the spine tingling at the beginning...the fact that there's not much to the creepy factor is probably best for me too >.< Thanks for your honesty and great review Amy!!

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