Holy crap! This book was awesome! Arclight is an astonishingly powerful debut by Josin L. McQuein. Even for someone who usually is weary of thrillers, this sucked me in and had me totally engrossed. With a great group of characters and an imaginative and beautifully depicted world, this book is a keeper.
Let me start right there, with the writing. I adore Josin L. McQuein's writing style. She describes everything with such gripping imagery and just has an amazing way with words. From the very first page, I was immediately impressed. And after having read some YA novels recently where the writing really was nothing to shout about, this made me so happy. You want quotable quotes? Read Arclight, seriously.
"You diminished me beyond words, and fractured me to less than nothing--a single voice pulled from the roar of the wind." -Arclight by Josin L. McQuein
The world she created was also amazingly creative and offered tons of opportunities for her to showcase that lovely writing style. The world is shrouded in the Dark, with monsters called the Fade terrorizing humans. It's hard to describe much more without me giving things away, but it's truly one of the more unique worlds I've read about lately. However, because the world was so complex, sometimes I felt it was hard to understand. While I really loved the writing style, at some points a little less embellishment and a little more clarity would have been appreciated.
I actually really loved so many of the characters, it's ridiculous. Marina strangely touched my heart. Though in the long run her personality may not be so memorable, I really sympathized with her a lot and ..yeah, she was really intriguing to read about, since most of the book covers the mystery of her identity. Tobin was really cool, at least for the first half, and dare I say it, a pretty swoon-worthy boy. But it's mostly about Rue. Rue is awesome. And Rue and Marina, it totally needs to happen.
That being said, the romance here is very light. It's mostly a background thing, and most of the book centers on the mystery/thriller aspect. I suppose one could say this is almost a love triangle, but it's a very complicated situation. However, I loved all of it. Like I just said: Rue and Marina. It touched my heart and it needs to happen. So give me the next book already.
The plot packed a punch with all its mysteries about the world, the Fade, and Marina's identity. I didn't want to stop reading, I just had to know the answers to all my questions. The plot is aptly twisty-turny, and that just makes for a really engaging read. (Also! It wasn't AS scary as I expected. Other bloggers claimed it would be best to read it in the daylight, but I was surprisingly not that scared - which is a good thing, for me, since I get nightmares easily.)
This was an awesome debut from Josin L. McQuein which gives me high hopes, not only for the sequel, Meridian, but also for the next books she comes up with. Her writing is just amazing and engrossing, and this world was extremely creative. This was just a great read! What more can I say?
Fans of thrillers, unique world building, and beautiful writing.