banner ad
banner ad
banner ad

BOOK REVIEW: The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey

| 27 September 2015 | 1 Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey

Random House Children’s
April 2015
Delacorte Press
Hardcover, $17.99
Reviewed by Aly Locatelli


“The young always think they’re invincible, right until the moment they learn otherwise. Usually, the hard way.”

The Girl at Midnight is in no way original. Marketed as a cross between Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo and City of Bones by Cassandra Clare, this book already set expectations incredibly high. It was a surprise to find that, in actuality, The Girl at Midnight is very, very similar to Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor instead. The premise is all there: strange creatures living in secret, an orphan human girl living with said strange creatures in the human world, being able to jump from one city to the other through portals… the similarities are endless.

Even the main character, Echo, is reminiscent of Taylor’s Karou. She is sarcastic but with a sweet streak, funny, witty and incredibly quick on the draw. Needless to say, I had a lot of expectations coming into this book, and not all of them were met. 

The Ala held out a hand to Echo. “Remind me, child, have I ever told you the story of the firebird?”

When Echo was seven years old, and an orphan, she made her living by pickpocketing and hiding out in the library, which she made into her home. Once night, she meets the Ala, who adopts her and invites her to live underground with her people, the Avicen — feathered beings more bird than human — as old as time itself. Ten years later, Echo steals a pretty box for the Ala’s birthday, setting off a chain of events that cannot be stopped.

For centuries, there has been a war between the Avicen and their long-standing enemies, the Drakharin — dragons in human flesh. It has been going on for so long, that no one really remembers how it started or why they are still fighting. It is never ending. But legend says that the firebird, a mythical creature, is the only way to end the war once and for all.

The Ala leaned toward Echo, serious and somber. “According to our prophecies, the firebird will bring about the end of this war with the Drakharin, but the nature of that end is up to whoever controls it.”

When the Ala opens the box and reveals a clue, Echo is sent to find the next object holding the next clue, and the Ala is sure it will lead her to the firebird. But at what cost will she find the creature? In a twist turn of events, she finds herself fighting side by side with a Drakharin soldier, Caius,  with secrets of his own. As enemies, Caius and Echo cannot trust each other, but they can’t help doing so, and they can’t help the growing feelings between them.

But they aren’t alone in searching. The Ala’s nemesis is also hunting for the firebird, and so is the new Dragon Prince. Are they all willing to pay the price?

The Girl at Midnight holds a lot of promise, but it doesn’t entirely deliver in this first instalment. Although I was captivated by the fantastic world-building, history and legends, it seemed to miss that certain oomph that I had with both Daughter of Smoke and Bone and Shadow and Bone. The similarities between the three are purely superficial, but deep below the surface of the story, it felt… lacking. However, I have high hopes for the second book and cannot wait to see what happens next. Grey weaves a beautiful tale of war, loss and deceit and, also, a romance between enemies that cannot be ignored. 



Category: Book Reviews, Other Reviews

About the Author ()

21. A reader, a writer, a reviewer and a full-time sloth lover. I am addicted to coffee and my laptop, and love reading especially when it's rainy outside.

Comments (1)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

Sites That Link to this Post

  1. BOOK REVIEW: The Shadow Hour by Melissa Grey | 100% ROCK MAGAZINE | 28 March 2017

Leave a Reply

Please verify you\'re a real person: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

banner ad
banner ad