Friday, February 8, 2013

Book Review: The Archived by Victoria Schwab

Today I am going to be sharing my review on The Archived by Jessica Schwab. This book was just released last month on the 22nd on January. This was definitely a book on my winter TBR list because when I read the description it sounded unlike any other book that I've read before. Which in fact, proved to be true. I was a bit skeptical about picking up this book because sometimes with books that I do not know much, I get really excited to read them and they end up sucking and I get disappointed. This has happened to me a number of times and I didn't want that to happen again with this book. However I was too intrigued by the concept of this book to pass on reading it. I will post the summary from good reads below and then share my thoughts on this book!

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was, a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often—violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.

Being a Keeper isn’t just dangerous—it’s a constant reminder of those Mac has lost. Da’s death was hard enough, but now her little brother is gone too. Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.

In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption.

There is a lot of things that I liked about this book, but there are also a few dislikes. I almost put this book down after reading about a quarter of the way though, but I decided to give it one more chance and I am so glad I did. I am so pleasantly surprised on how much I enjoyed this book. I find that this review might be hard to do without giving away some spoilers. It might be one thats hard to describe, so I will try my best to explain what this is about. Then I am just going to do this review in a list form sharing what I liked and disliked about this book.

So basically, The main character Mackenzie is what they call a Keeper. She was passed down this ability from her grandfather, Da. There is a place called The Archive which is a huge library for Histories, which are a replica of dead peoples bodies. These replicas are not the real person who is dead but rather just a live file of everything they were when they were living. The librarians are there to help keep the Archive and The Histories in order and protect their past. Mackenzie's job as a Keeper is to return the Histories who have awoken and escaped into the Narrows back to the Returns and the Archive. (I  think LOL) This book was super confusing to understand at first and I wish there was a lot more explanation of what exactly the Return, the Narrows and the Archive was all about.

What I liked:
-This definitely had a unique story line that had me really curious just from reading the back summary.

-Even though the beginning is confusing, I really liked how the story lime jumped right into action.

-I enjoyed Mackenzie as a main character. She had a lot of good traits about her. She is very determined and strong headed.

-I also like Wesley in this book as well. He was a good character, but I wish we got to know him a little bit more.

-I also really enjoyed Ronald. He was one of my favorite characters.

-After about half way through the story, I was really engaged and didn't want to put the book down. The murder mystery feel of this book was awesome and I was right there with the characters trying to figure everything out.

What I didn't like:
-The beginning was really confusing and it was kind of hard to get into. I didn't understand what was going on and had a hard time connecting to the story.

-I wish there was more explanation of things in this book, and also the ending was a bit bland.

-There were a lot of parts in the story where Mackenzie had flash backs to memories of the past with her Grandfather. I didn't like the writing style in these parts of the book. I it/them really annoying.

-Even though I said I liked Mackenzie and Wes, I also think they could have been a little bit more in depth and developed. I wish they had a more complex personality so I could connect with them better.

-I didn't like the weird and totally random romance in this book that came out of know where. I literally was like 'wtf' when it happened.

-I don't know how many books I've read where the main character and their family have moved away to a new town to start a new beginning, but this is another one of them. Even though this worked really well for the story, I still couldn't help being annoyed by the cliche.

-Like I said before, I almost put this book down and didn't finish reading it. I am so glad I gave it another chance, but nothing was keeping me hooked on the story until half way through. I'm usually too impatient for that.

Overall I gave this one a 4/5 stars just because I was so hooked and engaged in the story line after the first half of the book. I really can't wait for the next book in the series to come out. In the meantime I might check out the authors other book called The Near Witch.  I hope you all enjoyed my review and happy reading!

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