I figured out what’s been bugging me the most about 1935-A; not the reveal at the end, but what felt off to me the whole time. I feel like Narita kind of forgot about Rail. Like, Rail was there the whole time, had some lines, had a couple of interactions, but their personality and drive felt almost nonexistent compared to 1934.
Where was their drive that pushed along the entire Chicago plot arc of 1934? Where was their determination to find Frank, their need for revenge against Huey and Nebula, their love of bombcrafting to rival Nice? Why didn’t it show us Rail needing to come to terms with an entire new gang of people as their new family while leaving their old family behind? Where was the meeting between Rail and Chane? The narrative skipped right from Jacuzzi and Nice taking Rail and making a break for it after Rail’s suicide attempt at the Nebula building culminated from weeks/months of rebellion and revenge… to Rail already being a stable, cheerful, generally accepted presence in the gang who just tags along with Jacuzzi because they’ve got nothing better to do that day.
tl;dr - Narita, you’d better give me some Rail perspective in the next book or two because I refuse to believe you’d write such a slapdash recovery