Timely. Relevant. Ripped from the headlines. Matthew Quick’s new novel, We Are the Light, is all the above ... He plunges deeper ... The novel takes the form of letters from Lucas to his Jungian psychoanalyst Karl ... These letters become a sort of diary, a glimmer of hope and a testament to the healing power of art, one of the novel’s major themes ... The challenge of an epistolary book is that the format can be confining, but for such a character-driven novel, it creates intimacy instead of limitations. Lucas proves to be a skilled storyteller, and as he assumes Karl hasn’t left his house since his wife’s funeral, expands the narrative by recounting how other survivors are healing ... It’s been five years since Quick’s last book, but his skill at crafting an engaging narrative around trauma is as strong as ever. When you read Quick, you don’t feel guilty if your tears are mixed with laughter.
A testament to the broken and the rebuilt. Fans of Andre Dubus III and Meg Mason will appreciate Quick’s careful handling of Lucas’ fragile mental state, allowing the full events of the tragedy to unfold gradually as Lucas heals. Sadly relevant in the wake of too many mass shootings in recent memory, Quick’s deeply moving epistolary novel is a balm.
Illuminating ... Quick adds credible details of moviemaking and dynamic secondary characters to a crackling narrative, which builds to an excruciatingly honest disclosure. The author’s fans will love this.
A story of unexpected twists and turns on the road to recovery after a shattering tragedy ... He doesn't delve into issues like gun control or the shooter’s motivations, which makes the story feel superficial at times. Instead, his focus is on Lucas' healing journey, the people who love him (we should all be so lucky), and how the mind makes 'valiant attempts to protect us' until we’re ready to deal with our losses ... When it comes to facing tragedy and trauma, Quick's novel shows us that it definitely takes a village to heal and move on.