Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Book Review: The Archived (The Archived, #1)

Author| Victoria Schwab
Edition| Hardcover American
Genre| YA Horror/Paranormal
Rating| 4.5 stars

This is perfect for fans of The Devouring by Simon Holt or The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater.  It's got an eerie tone and an original premise that I adored.  It's one part ghost story, one part murder mystery, and one part magic.

Mac is a Keeper, which means she hunts down Histories in the Narrows.  A History is the essence, or literal history, of a dead person.  The Narrows are a place between the Outer (our world) and the Archive (where sleeping Histories are normally kept, it's like a giant library).  Keeping up?  After moving to a new house (actually, a really awesome hotel/apartment complex) to escape a family tragedy, she finds herself busy with a massive amount of Histories and a mystery that stretches back to the original inhabitants of her building.

The premise sounds really cool (I don't particularly do it justice) and the cover is freaking awesome, so I had high expectations.  It met them.  It didn't really surpass them though, so that, in addition to a slower pacing around the middle, kept it from being five stars.

The characters are great, I feel like I know them pretty well.  Wesley, in particular, has become a new favorite among characters.  I was hoping more would be done with the other residents, but leaving them out didn't hurt the book in any way.  Additionally, some of Wesley's back-story would have been nice, but again, without it the book is perfectly fine.

As for the story itself, that was written very well.  The mystery had me, as a reader, on my guard, pointing fingers at everyone.  When the reveal happens it's not completely unexpected, but it's also a sigh of relief to finally take your nails from your mouth.  I was very literally biting mine in anticipation.

This promises a decent series, but as far as I know, only one other book has been published and a third one is tentatively expected at some point in the future.

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