Cover Image: This Raging Light

This Raging Light

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Member Reviews

I was really hoping to like this book. It sounds like the perfect amount of drama. But there was a bit too much drama.

It's been mentioned in other reviews, Lucille, the main character, will not stop talking about a boy. I mean the whole novel is about the boy. The iconic part about this is that Lucille is dealing with raising her younger sister by herself since their mom or dad are not around. Personally I don't understand how someone can love another persons boyfriend when dealing with raising your younger sibling...AS YOU ARE STILL IN HIGH SCHOOL. The best part of the novel is Lucille and her sister. I enjoyed seeing their relationship and how they deal with everything on their own. I don't regret reading the novel, but I just wish it wasn't about the boy the whole time.
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This Raging Light centres around the story of Lucille, a 17-year-old US high school student. As life collapses around her, Lucille faces challenge after challenge and must learn to trust both herself and the caring people around her.

It's quite a sad story, all in all - some of the things that happen to Lucille are things that could easily be facing countless other people out there in the real world, and This Raging Light really does make you think. From loss and grief to domestic violence and the all-too-real struggle that many families face simply trying to make ends meet, a wide range of difficult issues are present in the book.

Although it took me a little while to get into the book, I soon found myself rooting for Lucille and turning page after page, willing just a little good luck to be thrown her way. There were some totally unexpected twists and turns in the story as well that I just didn't see coming at all, which is a real credit to the author's skill as a writer.
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(I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.)

Lucille Bennett is pushed into adulthood after her mom decides to “take a break”…from parenting, from responsibility, from Lucille and her little sister, Wren. Left to cover for her absentee parents, Lucille thinks, “Wren and Lucille. Lucille and Wren. I will do whatever I have to. No one will pull us apart.”
Now is not the time for level-headed Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she’s about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend’s brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure’s soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page.

Uggghhhh, that was not good for me. Lots of things going wrong and nothing really good to say about it...I don't even know where to start...

* Lucille was one of the most unlikeable characters I have ever read in YA fiction. Selfish, whiny, bitchy...
* Digby (what kind of a name is that, really?) was so predictable that you could almost have read the book and skipped his parts and knew what was going to happen. 
* Lucille's mother skipped out and her father has mental health issues and she is looking after her kid sister - all of that should have made me "feel" something. But it was just so flat and insipid. Possibly Lucille's character was part of that...
* Finally, the writing was dreadful. So many attempts at being poignant and emotive just ended up coming across as a confusing mess. Let me give you one example:

"There are no kisses. There is no touching. After he leaves, I find a red pepper, sliced into strips arranged symmetrically, on a plate in the kitchen."

What does that even mean? It was mentally sapping dealing with this kind of prose.

Would I recommend this book? Sure, I know people who would love it - but I wouldn't tell my friends about it.

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DNF (did not finish) - 13% 

I convinced myself I was curious enough about the mom to keep on reading but then subtle racist and homophobic comments appeared. 

They were soft blows (compared to outright racism and homophobia) but it all starts from the little things and it's still something.

Also Lucille??? and her undying swoony "love" for the Whiter than White boy??? "I'm headstrong but GODDAMN THAT BOY'S GOT MY PANTIES IN A BUNCH" Honestly, I don't even know anymore. I feel insulted as a woman.

The writing style also felt flat, it was always this and that and nothing more. 
The main character's feelings and problems are described. "Oh no, what am I gonna do my mommy's gone! I feel so lost and empty."
The other characters' actions and appearance are described. "Wrenny looks like hell because our mommy is gone. Digby is HAWT I CAN'T THINK STRAIGHTKEJEEIES" 
A random fact is thrown in. "I'm sitting in Eden's room and she has this poster saying some words I don't give a damn about."

To put it plain and simple, it's exactly that, plain but lowkey insulting.
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Lucille’s dad went crazy and now her mom has taken off. Left alone with her little sister Wren, Lucille is determined to take care of things so the two aren’t put into foster care. Her best friend pitches in, until a rift widens between the two girls. Lucille works hard and tries her best and is helped by her ex BFF’s brother Digby, who she soon falls in love with, despite the fact that he already has a girlfriend.

Will Lucy be able to keep it all together?

A really lovely read.
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