Title: The Archived
Author: Victoria Schwab
Publication Date: January 22, 2013
AR Levels: Book Level - 4.7, Interest Level - 9th-12th, Points - 13.0
Goodreads Link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10929432-the-archived
In a nutshell: Mackenzie Bishop, the youngest girl to ever be named a Keeper, began her job when she was just 12 years old, and that important job is to keep the dead where they belong. Mackenzie serves The Archive, an otherworldly place where Histories, or records of the dead, are kept sleeping on shelves and guarded by Librarians. Once in a while, a History awakens, and then it's Mackenzie's job to return it so it doesn't reach the outside world. Mackenzie inherited this calling from her grandfather, Da, who himself has passed on recently along with her little brother, Ben, who died in an accident. In an effort to start afresh after those tragedies struck their family, Mackenzie and her parents move to an old hotel that's been converted to an apartment building, The Coronado. Mackenzie knows that old buildings hold more memories, more secrets, and more roaming Histories, but she has no idea just how dark its secrets are and how much she'll be tested in her duties as Keeper.
I'd recommend it for grades: 9 and up (for mild language and heavy subject matter...but even adults will enjoy this one!)
I'd recommend it to: Neil Gaiman fans, Whovians, fans of The Giver
What I liked most about this book: It's the perfect blend of terror, romance, mystery, and suspense. Schwab completely sucked me into this world (It helps that there's a giant library.), and I am dying to read the sequel now. The writing style is gorgeous, and there's a small cliffhanger at the end of nearly every chapter, so you don't want to put it down, and I mean that in a good way! Also, Mackenzie rocks. She's such a strong yet vulnerable heroine. If I had to sum it all up in two words, I'd say haunting and beautiful.
Single favorite moment (without getting spoiler-y): Mackenzie meets a boy named Wes who has an aunt and cousin who live in The Coronado, and at one point they start discussing her required summer reading list, which includes Dante's Inferno, one of Wes' favorite books. He says, "It's a shame they do that....requirement ruins even the best of books." So true and timely considering our summer reading program starts this week at the library! Word of advice - read what you want AND what you have to this summer. :)
Star rating (where 5 stars is awesome and 0 stars is atrocious): 5 stars