I must say, I am pleasantly surprised! I wasn’t sure what to expect going into this, due to my whole “don’t read synopses, don’t read reviews” thing I have for books I have yet to read. I don’t like spoilers, okay? Which is kind of silly since I’m running a recap site and there are spoilers everywhere, but whatever. Anyway, I really liked Arclight! I finished it in just over 24 hours, and that is probably a record for me over these past few months. Damn reading funks.
One of my favourite things about this book was the world-building. It wasn’t anything outstanding, but it was definitely pretty awesome. I liked that Marina’s town was separated from everything else by a wall of light so that these creatures – the Fade – couldn’t get in. Well, that’s what we’re told, but the Fade actually breach the wall of light in the first chapter. So what could be going wrong?
I loved the Fade. They were really mysterious, since Marina and the other teens and kids don’t know much about them. Those damn adults are keeping secrets and not letting them in on everything. Arghhh, adults *shakes fist* I loved discovering more about the Fade and what exactly they were. They were creepy!
I thought that the plot itself was a bit predictable. And by “a bit”, I mean I knew what was going on with Marina by the time I was 20% of the way through. It didn’t have a huge impact on my enjoyment of the novel, because I still really liked seeing Marina and the other characters discover everything. And I liked being proven right, I am not gonna lie. Despite being predictable, the plot was really fast paced. I can’t think of one slow moment, and I definitely wasn’t bored at all. I was impressed by how the author managed to fit so much into this book.
I really liked Marina. I liked that she was headstrong and determined, and I also loved the mystery surrounding her and her past. She’s not one of my all time favourite female protagonists (i.e. she’s not Hermione or Rose or Scarlet), but she’s still pretty cool.
There was a love triangle, and I actually thought it was quite well developed in comparison to some of the ones I’ve read about. I didn’t like how it turned out, though. It just didn’t feel right to me. Marina’s reasoning was kind of off, and the way she chose who she chose didn’t quite fit with her character development, or with the overall story. Maybe I’m just bitter because I was rooting for the other guy. I’m kinda hoping that – since there’s going to be a sequel, eep! – Marina will continue with the character development and realise that the guy she chose is an idiot.
As well as the way the love story wrapped up, I initally thought that the story could have been wrapped up better. However, that was before I knew there was going to be a sequel. I thought that Arclight was just a standalone, and I wasn’t all that happy with the ending. In the sequel, I’m hoping to find out more about what the humans and the Fade are going to do, and how Marina is dealing with the new things she’s discovered about herself.
Overall, Arclight is a really strong debut, and I’m mostly pleased with the way it turned out. I can’t wait for the sequel, mostly because I want to see more of a certain character who I was weirdly attracted to. He and Marina had great chemistry!