The Archived by Victoria Schwab (Archived #1)
Published Hyperion 2013
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Format: Hardback from the library
Other books in this series: The Unbound
Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.
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.
This book has been very highly pumped for me. There is a lot of hype surrounding this one right now, especially since the sequel published just a few months ago. I went in with very high expectations.
At the beginning of this book, I was really struggling with it. I thought about putting it down and not finishing it, but I knew there had to be something special if so many people really loved it. So, I kept pushing through. There is not really much of a plot, just a bunch of mysterious situations all happening at once. I found Mackenzie, the main character, really hard to connect to and just not very likable at all. It was a little annoying having her as the main character. I guess the book caught hold for me around page 200. But by that time, I was a little tired of reading about the world.
The world of the Archived was okay. There were a lot of things that didn’t really make sense. I guess it is a replacement for heaven, but I’m not sure how that fits into this world. And all of the different levels and areas and jobs also lost me. It was just so much that was never really explained throughout the entire book. I had that problem the entire time and nothing ever clicked, at any point in the book.
The romance in this book killed me. It was so bad. Mackenzie is one of those characters that falls in love with a guy as soon as she sees them. It seemed like it was way too early for her to be kissing all these guys (yes, multiple-it’s a love triangle) when in the beginning, she had problems trusting really anyone. That really took me out of the story.
I knew exactly what was going to happen pretty far in, so the ‘plot twist’ at the end of the book didn’t really catch me off guard at all. It was just kind of weird that they were so shocked because I saw it as pretty obvious what was happening.
Overall, this book was just okay. There is really nothing special about it. I don’t think I am going to continue on with this series, but I might just to see where this story goes and to see if it gets better.