The Girl at Midnight
Author: Melissa Grey
Publisher: April 28th 2015
Publication Date: Delacorte Press
~A copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review~
For readers of Cassandra Clare's City of Bones and Leigh Bardugo's Shadow and Bone, The Girl at Midnight is the story of a modern girl caught in an ancient war.
Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she's ever known.
Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she's fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it's time to act.
Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, but if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it's how to hunt down what she wants . . . and how to take it.
But some jobs aren't as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.
How could it have gone so wrong? It's funny how you can go from really liking a book to really hating it within 30%. The first 10% of The Girl at Midnight was iffy for me, but then I really got into it, but somewhere between 50% and 80% things went downhill fast.
There are a few reasons why, the main reason being the dreaded obligatory love triangle, but I'll get to that in a minute. First, the good things about The Girl at Midnight.
The world was interesting, and unique, to me at least, since I haven't read anything similar and the writings beautiful and vivid, and it paints a beautiful picture, but- and of course there's a but- all of this felt overshadowed once the love triangle set in. Yes, there are moments where the serious situation the characters are in comes back to them, and they actually remember what they're on the search for the Firebird for, but the moments of glances and brush of hands and stubborn hair that won't stay in place makes you forget that the Avicen and Drakhan were at war and Echo was caught in-between the both. I was all for it, until it got predictable.
There are few things that make me dislike a book.
1) Love Triangle/Bad Romance
I am very, very disappointed in you, The Girl at Midnight, why did I think you would be so different? Maybe because Echo already had a boyfriend, Rowan, who she's liked since she met him, and they've been friends since, up until a few months ago. They already had a solid relationship, before a romantic relationship. I thought at least that was something that would be harder to break apart. Turns out, not so much.
And of course the sort of the second love interest in the triangle (more, bye, Rowan) has to be with the enemy, and of course is, uh, 200 and something years old. Echo is seventeen. In retrospect, after finishing it, I do get it now, but still don't like it.
2) Whiny characters.
Luckily, we don't get that with The Girl and Midnight, the focus isn't solely on Echo, so we do have multiple perspectives, and for a change, I actually liked it. I didn't get confused with the characters, they all get brought to life in their own special way. Of course Echo is going to be my favourite though, she's feisty and sarcastic and is a do-it-herself girl, she doesn't expect anyone to save her, in fact, she does the saving. I loved that side of Echo.
3) Bitchy for no reason characters.
Sadly, this was present in The Girl at Midnight, and it resided all on Ruby. Ruby's a rather pointless character, to be honest. Her sole designation resides in hating Echo because she got Rowan and she never. Okay, there's mention that Ruby's hated her from the beginning because Echo's human and doesn't belong in the Avicen nest, but really, the only impression you got from her was because of Rowan.
The Girl of Midnight went from being a 4 to a 3.5 to a 3, now to a 2.5 I liked the world and the writing and for the most part, the characters, but the romance dragged it down and got in the way.