As an avid reader of young adult fiction, I found myself puzzled by Josin L. McQuein’s Arclight. At first I was captivated by the dystopian society, but as the story progressed, I found myself a little lost in the dust as the novel sped on.
Arclight begins with a teenage girl named Marina who has escaped the Fade. She is the only person to come out of Arclight’s walls without being turned into a supposed hostile alien-like species aptly named the Fade because of their ability to fade into the darkness. The Arclight is what’s left of the human race set in walls that are constantly lit. The light is safety; the dark is death. The story follows Marina as she tries to remember where and what she came from before arriving at the Arclight.
I really enjoyed the beginning of the novel. It started right in the middle of the action – something I really enjoy as a reader. However, I felt like the rest of the book was rushed. I’m not sure if Arclight will be a series, but I feel as if it should have been written as one. A lot of character relationships and concepts introduced in the novel were lost on me. Once I came to the end of the book, I was a little disappointed. While some questions were answered, I thought the ending didn’t really fix any of the problems explained in the book.
That’s not to say that Arclight wasn’t worth the read. The sci-fi aspect of the book really had my attention. There was an element of mystery due to Marina’s acute amnesia. It was fun piecing together Marina’s past and guessing along with her. Plenty of conflict arose in the novel, and it kept me reading. I only wish there was a little more time withing the book’s pages to fully appreciate its characters and concepts.
Sarah Emily Lelonek has a BA in English Literature from Kent State University. She is planning on attending Graduate School for English Rhetoric and Composition. She enjoys traveling and gaming while on breaks from working on her novel.
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Electric Monkey. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.