Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Archived by Victoria Schwab

Title: The Archived (The Archived #1)
Author: Victoria Schwab
Released January 22, 2013
Bought Paperback from Amazon
Rating: 4/5


Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures 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 that 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 may 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 (Summary from Goodreads).

The first thing that stuck out to me was the writing style.  Now, typically I don't care for a poetic, wistful style because it seems to me that the author is trying to hard (*cough cough* Shatter Me) BUT I didn't feel that way with The Archived.  It has a slightly wistful (not sure what word to use) vibe but not too much to annoy me.  The tone it set helped me empathize with Mackenzie.

Mackenzie has gone through a lot with the deaths of her grandfather and brother, and is rightfully a bit depressed throughout most of the book.  Wesley balances this with his friendly and quirky personality.  Whenever Mackenzie and him are together, she becomes a little more relaxed and we see her humorous side come out a little bit.  She is also more herself when her mind is preoccupied with her role as a Keeper.

The whole system with the Archive, Keepers, Crews, and Librarians was really fascinating to me.  I was genuinely interested in learning about what they do, and I especially liked the action-packed scenes where Mackenzie deals with the Histories.

There was a lot of mystery going on, and it was very satisfying when the true antagonist was revealed.  Looking back at it now, I could have figured it out if I were more perceptive, but it was a great surprise for me.

Overall, a great read.  I feel like the next book will be even better, and I can't wait to read more of Victoria Schwab's books!

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