The Record Keeper, the first novel from Agnes Gomillion, has a little bit of something for everyone!
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Sarah Mather and Titan Books for the opportunity! This post contains affiliate links for which I will earn commission at no cost to you.
Title: The Record Keeper
Author: Agnes Gomillion
Page count: 454
I am Arika of House Cobane.
Do not swaddle me.
I dare you.
I dare you.p.13-14, The Record Keeper, Agnes Gomillion
Arika, almost as soon as she is born, is thrust into a position of power. After World War III almost destroyed the world, a new type of power structure is put in place, with Record Keepers to document the way. And so begins Arika’s journey through rebellion, discrimination and personal growth.
Honestly, this is the most beautifully written book. The raw emotion conveyed makes every single word powerful. The opening ten pages, in particular, have stuck with me. The brutality, the degradation and the eventual bending of will shows explicitly how the separation of the states impacted the free will it proposes to protect.
Comparing Arika at the beginning and the end, the journey is impressive. From a rule-obeying, almost backward person, completely internalising their opinions, to an enlightened and open woman rising to power, the difference is really well written. The only misgiving I have on this part, is that it took a little too long for it to happen.
I did feel like there were a few opportunities where the author could’ve slowed down and developed the picture a little. Even if it’s just to take a second to describe the classroom, or Mrs Jones, or what’s left of the earth, this book could really do with a little bit more of the “fluffy” stuff.
All that being said, I’m still looking forward to the next instalment. I think Gomillion could do with taking a bit more of a critical eye over The Record Keeper and making a few stylistic changes. However, I’m very excited to see this author grow – definitely one to watch!