Shoshana's Reviews > The Light

The Light by D.J. MacHale
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Mar 19, 12

bookshelves: 2012, unexpectedly-didn-t-suck
Read from March 16 to 19, 2012

I'm not going to lie, I went into this book with really low expectations. Which, in all likelihood, helped my reading experience.

(Also, I'd like to get this out of the way: Marshall is a stupid name for an adventure/suspense/thriller story, particularly because the nickname - Marsh - evokes gross sludge. Add to the fact that this is set at a like - poor choice.)

I did feel the writing for the first quarter-to-third of the book was pretty clumsy; if I hadn't been reading it for work, I probably would have dropped it. I'm glad I didn't. As the pace picked up, the writing got a lot smoother (or, at least, I got used to it), and the voice a lot less "simpleton teenaged boy." Toward the end of the book he acknowledges that he is no longer the sheltered geek king from the beginning and while I don't agree with how he puts it (he's still a huge geek and not fundamentally any "cooler") I agree he's smartened up and matured a lot. And I appreciate it.

Sydney, the female lead, also undergoes some polishing throughout the novel - though it gets a bit overdone. Certainly, she's almost unrealistically nasty and blunt at the beginning and it's a great relief when she mellows out, starts treating Marshall as a human being, and works with him. She becomes a much more realistic character - feels like an actual person. However, I kind of want to kick MacHale in the teeth for how he writes her toward the end, and particularly at the climax. Everything she says is "whined," and she freezes up constantly. Marshall has to grow a pair twice over to compensate, and it all smacks of some underlying message that in times of crises Men are Men and women kinda crumble.

Lame.

That said! I really enjoyed the plot and the pacing: not too much setup and I caught myself holding my breath at tense points (and, it bears repeating, this is typically NOT my genre). And while so far I kind of thing the plot itself is dumb and poorly explained (yes, I know it's supposed to be *mysterious,* but even the bad guys don't seem to really know what they're vaguely referencing), I had enough fun that I'll probably read the next one.
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