Lumière by Jacqueline Garlick
(The Illumination Paradox #1)
Publication date: December 12th 2013
Genres: Steampunk, Young AdultSynopsis:
Even in a land of eternal twilight, secrets can’t stay hidden forever.
Seventeen-year-old Eyelet Elsworth is no stranger to living in the dark. She’s hidden her secret affliction all of her life—a life that would be in danger if superstitious townspeople ever guessed the truth. 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—her last hope for a cure. But Eyelet’s late father’s most prized invention, the Illuminator, has been missing since the day of the mysterious flash—a day that saw the sun wiped out over Brethren forever.
Alone and on the run, she finds the Illuminator—only to witness a young man hauling it away. Determined to follow the thief and recover the machine, she ventures into the deepest, darkest, most dangerous part of her twisted world.
Thank you very much to Jacqueline and XpressoBookTours for offering me a free copy of this book to review. This YA steampunk novel gets 3.5 stars from me, which means it will be rated 4 stars on Goodreads and any other websites that don’t allow half-stars. Keep reading for my review and then the giveaway!
This story grabbed me from the beginning, so bonus points for that because it has been a while since I was able to emerge into a book this quickly. ‘Lumiere’ involves you in a highly captivating fast-paced and action-packed environment, and it’s difficult to not be curious about what ‘is going to happen next’.
The strongest part of this book, in my opinion, is in the middle. I was very curious to know more about Urlick, his background history, his secrets. All of this information has been withheld and revealed at the right times. The author incorporates a bit of conflict after that, which is good, but then we have more conflict, and yet more conflict, which at some point feels as if it’s dragging a bit. So I do feel there are a few conflict points that could be skipped.
Romance is the predictable part of this book, which is not necessarily a bad thing. I feel it worked well in forming a bond with the characters without it being the main focus of the plot.
The world-building was interesting too, and some of the concepts helped creating a gloomy and dark vibe very much needed in the suspenseful / horror bits.
There is this ‘sentence’ who is repeated a few times throughout the book that would have had more impact if it was shared only between two people, something along the lines of ‘our little secret’, but this is just me.
Characters & Points of View
I really liked the characters in this novel, they were incredibly relatable. This is another good example of young characters that are flawed and feel genuine.
Urlick follows the concept of “beast” as in “Beauty and the Beast”, not original but definitely more refreshing than your typical YA heart-throb.
Eyelet is easily likeable but not perfect; she makes mistakes which make perfect sense for this character’s age / level of maturity, and suit her personality and history. I wouldn’t have expected a character of this age to be more mature than what she was portrayed, even if I do have to say that she stands out a bit in her rushed behaviour if we compare her to Urlick – who sounds and acts much older.
I was not as keen on the villain, he was entertaining but I thought he could be a bit more developed.
The story is narrated in first person with two alternating POVs, and it’s all in the present tense. If I had the choice, I’d switch the tense. Along with the present tense, we have some description that feels exhaustive with the constant use of passive of voice.
Animals, machines and other entities act too much as ‘human’ – perhaps it’s the point, but still.
Well, overall the writing style must have worked, since I felt particularly attached to the characters – specially Urlick. Dialogue was very well done too.
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- A special PPP up hand cut flying balloon card, signed copy of Lumiere and some bling
About the author
I’m Jacqueline Garlick, author of young adult and new adult fiction. I love strong heroines, despise whiny sidekicks, and adore a good story about a triumphant underdog. (Don’t you?)
I love to read, write, paint (walls and paper). I have a love/hate relationship with chocolate, grammar, and technology and would rather hang out with a dog, than a cat. I prefer creating things to cleaning things, and believe laughter is a one-stop-shop solution to all that ails you. You will always find a purple wall (or two) in my house (currently in my writing room), and there may or may not be a hidden passageway that leads to a mystery room. (Okay, so you won’t find a hidden passageway, but a girl can dream, can’t she?) Oh, and tea. There will always be tea.
My writing style has been described as edgy and rule-breaking, and by some–a touch Tim Burton-esque. Because of this, I am often referred to as the Quentin Tarantino of YA among writing friends.
In my former life, I was a teacher (both grade school and college-don’t ask), but more recently I’ve been a graduate of Ellen Hopkin’s Nevada Mentor Program and a student of James Scott Bell, Christopher Vogler and Don Maass. An excerpt from Lumière earned me the 2012 Don Maass Break Out Novel Intensive Scholarship.
Lumière–A Romantic Steampunk Fantasy–my debut novel, is the recipient of an indieBRAG Medallion!!! B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree October 15, 2014) I am so proud! (LUMIERE by Jacqueline E. Garlick is a B.R.A.G.Medallion Honoree. This tells a reader that this book is well worth their time and money!) Book II of the ILLUMINATION PARADOX SERIES, is out January 26th, now on pre-order.
Also, check out my young adult contemporary romantic/mystery serial, IF ONLY, where reluctant telepathic sleuth Kyla Cooper must embrace her powers and risks all to solve the mystery of what happened to her boyfriend Denver Munro, becoming his voice of truth, before he has no voice at all…
I’m open to reviews and interview, requests for skype visits, guest blogs, pod casts and book club meetings! I LOVE TO HEAR FROM READERS!