Typically, I’m not a fan of relationships that reach an extremely deep level of commitment in an unbelievably short amount of time. However, in Illuminated, while I thought Callie and August’s relationship develops quickly, it works for me. Perhaps it’s the shared excitement, the adrenaline rush of being thrown together, hunting down clues to an archaic mystery together. Perhaps it’s the poetic, romantic words of A. bringing them together. Perhaps it’s the fact that August is just so sweet and so obviously into Callie.Perhaps it’s a combination of all of these reasons. But given the conditions, I can understand how an intense romance could be kindled under such circumstances.
Overall, with just the slightest hint of magical realism, Illuminated is a story of the all-consuming beauty, the hopefulness, the limitless potential of young love contrasted against the tragedy of a centuries old romance.