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WINGSPAN

The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas

WINGSPAN

The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas

WINGSPAN

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May 17 Daily Update
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Karina Grokhovskaya, WTV Executive Producer • May 17, 2024

WTV's Ryan Shapiro, Karina Grokhovskaya, and Sadie Johnson bring you a few last words

Every Book Has a Silver Lining: Archivist Wasp

In+this+weekly+review%2C+Every+Book+has+a+Silver+Lining%2C+staff+reporter+Christina+Huang+takes+a+look+at+books+to+find+their+silver+lining.
Christina Huang
In this weekly review, Every Book has a Silver Lining, staff reporter Christina Huang takes a look at books to find their silver lining.

Romance has long since dominated the book market as the best selling genre, so the rise of romantasy isn’t much of a surprise. Archivist Wasp by Nicole Kornher-Stace, however, has no romance whatsoever. Wasp, the main character, and even all side characters, are given no love interest at all. But with the nature of the story, the absent element isn’t missed. 

Wasp is the Archivist, the representative of a goddess called the Catchkeep. The role is an obligation chosen for her: she’s marked by the long scar that runs across the face of every upstart (potential Archivists). Untouchable by practically everyone, her only duty is to hunt ghosts. To continue to do so, each year, there’s an opportunity for a new Archivist. Wasp must defeat each upstart that challenges her each year, but it isn’t for the job. The only way out is to be defeated and sacrificed for the Catchkeep. 

Only after completing her third annual fight is she approached with a way out, a way to live her own life. This proposition, however, comes from a ghost. A talking one. All Archivist records considered, this was something new. More than this, the ghost opens the door to a magical world unlike anything Wasp could have imagined as they search for the ghost’s comrade. The ghost was never named, but has been searching for thousands of years with fading memories, guilt, and an old letter in its pocket. Everything changes when Wasp discovers the ability to read memories through any blood that touches her harvesting knife. Slowly, Wasp and her ghost companion piece together the past as they create a steady bond of trust and friendship.

On paper, the novel is intriguing, but with excessive descriptions and sometimes confusing sentences—which often were missing a subject, especially prominent in the beginning—the 268 page book was made as lengthy as the journey made by Wasp and the ghost. The world of Archivist Wasp was messy and chaotic, but not by accident. The other-worldly feel of the world enhanced the post-apocalyptic novel. 

Through their fantastical, surreal journey searching for a ghost who only seems to exist in memories, Wasp is able to explore her identity: who she was before she was Wasp, the Archivist, and the value of a friendship she was never allowed to have. Archivist Wasp definitely broke away from the norm in more than just a lack of romance, as Kornher-Stace brings a somewhat bizarre but enjoyable story to life full of magic, exploration, and personal discovery for any reader looking to step away from more familiar stories and tropes. 

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About the Contributor
Christina Huang
Christina Huang, Staff Reporter/Interactive Media Editor
Christina Huang is a sophomore in her first year officially with Wingspan. She enjoys reading, writing, playing the piano and viola, and finding/creating wallpapers for her phone which she will likely never use. She’s looking forward to the opportunity to better her writing and find the good in scorned books this year through her book blog: Every Book Has a Silver Lining. Contact Christina: christina.huang.862@k12.friscoisd.org

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