Thursday, August 13, 2015
Review: Lumiere by Jacqueline E. Garlick
Author: Jacqueline E. Garlick
Series: The Illumination Paradox, Book One
Published Date: 11 August 2015
Buy: Amazon | The Book Depository
I received this book through NetGalley from Skyscape for review.
Even in a land of eternal twilight, secrets can’t stay in the dark forever.
Seventeen-year-old Eyelet Elsworth has only one hope left: finding her late father’s most prized invention, the Illuminator. It’s been missing since the day of the mysterious flash—a day that saw the sun wiped out forever over England.
But living in darkness is nothing new to Eyelet. She’s hidden her secret affliction all of her life—a life that would be in danger if superstitious townspeople ever guessed the truth. And after her mother is accused and executed for a crime that she didn’t commit, the now-orphaned Eyelet has no choice but to track down the machine that was created with the sole purpose of being her cure.
Alone and on the run, she finally discovers the Illuminator—only to see a young man hauling it off. Determined to follow the thief and recover the machine, she ventures into the deepest, darkest, most dangerous part of her twisted world. (summary from Goodreads)
Heart racing and action packed, Lumiere is a fun and engaging read.
There's so much more to Lumiere than I first expected. I wanted to read this book because it's a steampunk novel, and on that front Lumiere certainly doesn't disappoint. A Victoria Era-esque world full of wondrous mechanical machines, Garlick hits the steampunk nail on the head. But Lumiere is also a fascinating mix of science fiction and fantasy, where science and magic exist alongside each other. Evil spirits, talking crows, a possible alternate world where the dead live...but science is revered and magic fanatically feared. Think witch trials, but on a slightly scarier scale. In Eyelet's world, any sign of mental illness - even something like epilepsy - has you thrown into a mental institute, and 'Wickedry' - the supposed practice of magic - gets you hung. After being dipped alive in hot wax. Oh, yeah. There's a lot going on throughout Lumiere and it's one wild ride. From start to finish, Garlick has crafted a fast paced novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat and your nose buried in this book. More so, Garlick's great at building the tension. From creepy laboratories to ravaged criminal infested woods, daring escapes and brain eating spirits, a world with no sun and mutating pollution, Lumiere is utterly atmospheric. The only very minor downside is that with so much going on, Lumiere doesn't develop into an in-depth story. The whole book is Eyelet and Urlick's search for the Illuminator and the piece's to their respective fathers' puzzles. We end this book with more questions than answers, really. The ride is worth it though and it means I'm eargerly anticipating the next book in Garlick's series.
I definitely want more of Eyelet and Urlick, especially as Lumiere ends with quite the cliffhanger! Eyelet is intelligent and fearless, her curiosity overriding any sense of fear to the point of recklessness. She's just charming enough to get away with it. Urlick is a surprising hero, vulnerable and secretive, and completely under Eyelet's spell. He's kind of adorable. I loved the relationship between the two. It's sweet. I'm so impressed by how accepting each of them is and it only endears them to me more. Iris, C.L. and Cordelia are interesting characters, outsiders feared and mistreated by the world, and while only part of a fraction of this story here, I'm desperate to learn more of them as the series continues. There are plenty of revelations and twists at the end of Lumiere actually, and all of them are enticing me to read more so I get the answers I haven't even begun to ask the questions to. Oh, Jacqueline Garlick, I see what you've done here!
Lumiere is a wonderfully magical read that is truly imaginative.