Delaware, the morning of April 19. Senior Skip Day, and April Donovan’s eighteenth birthday. Four days after the Boston Marathon bombing, the country is still reeling, and April’s rare memory condition has her recounting all the tragedies that have cursed her birth month. And just what was that mysterious gathering under the bleachers about? Meanwhile, in Nebraska, Lincoln Evans struggles to pay attention in Honors English, distracted by the enigmatic presence of Laura Echols, capturer of his heart. His teacher tries to hold her class’s interest, but she can’t keep her mind off what Adrian George told her earlier. Over in Idaho, Phoebe is having second thoughts about the Plan mere hours before the start of a cross-country ploy led by an Internet savant known as the Mastermind. Is all her heartache worth the cost of the Assassins’ machinations? The Light Fantastic is a tense, shocking, and beautifully wrought exploration of the pain and pathos of a generation of teenagers on the brink—and the hope of moving from shame and isolation into the light of redemption.
General thoughts and review
Coming off the heels of her debut novel Sarah Comb’s sophomore novel The Light Fantastic is a Young Adult psychological drama that masterfully follows eight different characters all dealing in some way with “The Plan”. Combs does such a wonderful job at making sure the reader gets fleshed out characters with equal reading time. Right off the bat the book wastes no time getting you hooked with its plotline, giving you little to no time to put on your seat-belt and get ready for this roller coaster.
This novel centers around “The Plan”, however unlike many of the other novels with the same kind of situational plot line, Combs doesn’t care to much about the actually Plan in her writing, instead she gets into the minds of those involved and effected by The Plan. This novel is extremely detail oriented, centered so much around the small intimate moments that really define us a Human that the reader cant skip anything. Every little thing matters, every little detail. From the time stamps to even the messages in the chat room.
I’m typically not a fan of Multi-perspective stories because it’s so easy for me as a reader to get lost. However, I found the transition between characters to be smooth and each character had such different styles of writing and unique phrasing that made them #Distinguishable, and each character had a network of side characters that really sold the book for me. It allowed me as a reader to really humanize the main characters.
I think some of the biggest themes or motifs in this novel is that everything isn’t always so black and white, that there is a grey area. Sometimes people can be so lost and feel like they have no one in their corner, like they’re suffocating on their pain so much that they’ll do anything to get rid of it. In this novel The Glass Menagerie, is referenced and utilized a lot in symbolism. Having already read this play I got a few of the parallel s in the novel. — All of which you’ll understand even if you haven’t read the play.
Diversity Scale & Critics
The diversity scale is a new measuring tool I will use to measure how diverse a novel is. The Light Fantastic is on surface, diverse. There are quit a bit of characters with “Ethnic” last names, A pair of interracial lesbian moms, & A gay male character. While these characters are mentioned or play a part in the novel, their not the main characters nor is the novel set around their experiences with how they identify.
I don’t have to many critics about this book, I thought it overall was a good read. I don’t think it’s one of those books you should walk into wanting action. It’s intense and plays heavy into what makes people do the things they do and how people can be pushed to the edge. I know I stated this earlier but Combs did such a wonderful job at humanizing these characters and using small, intimate moments to do just that.
I thought the book was great, a lot of details and if you look hard enough you’ll find the message and the meaning behind the The light Fantastic. So beautiful, so poetic, so honest. I can tell the author took her time with everything. All in All I give this novel: