Monday, May 4, 2015

Review: The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey

Title: The Girl at Midnight
Author: Melissa Grey
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: April 28 2015

For fans of Cassandra Clare's City of Bones and Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke & 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, though 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.

Gathering my thoughts after that roller coaster ride...

The Girl at Midnight is the beautifully written debut novel of author Melissa Grey.  I could sit here all day and talk about the amazing imagery.  But I'm pretty sure other things are important too.  Like the vocabulary.  I was so proud of myself when I actually knew one of the vocabulary words that Echo defined.  After that, I was excited to learn new, complicated words to torture people with.  Like backpfeifengesicht (I'm a horrible person, I know).

The story follows protagonist Echo through a holy-grail-type quest to find the mythical firebird in order to end a war between the Avicen and the Drakharin peoples.  In true King Arthur style, a round table of knights is recruited to help with the quest (I'm honestly amazed that I haven't seen anyone else use this metaphor).

Thievery and battles ensue.  There is romance.  And a twist!  Huzzah!  And something I'm supremely happy about is to see more gay characters in mainstream YA.  

The end leaves off on a cliffhanger.  I so need the next book (it's not a matter of want - I need it).

So what did I think overall?
Well, despite the slow start, The Girl at Midnight had a fantastic ending that left me wanting more.  I really liked it.  Recommended to YA fans and urban fantasy fans.

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