“Midlight” is a dystopian fantasy about a post-atomic-war world where the population has become nocturnal because of the radiation levels in the sunlight. And the relationships seem to have faded into the dark as well, with dysfunction being the order of the day. Or lack of order, in this case.
And this lack of coherence spills over into the style of the writing. The whole book is disorienting, like you’re walking around it a fog all the time. Every once in a while a scene becomes crystal clear, but it’s out of context, so you can’t figure out what it means. It’s the same with the relationships. Nobody seems to be able to get along, but everything is shrouded in oblique references to a hazy past.
Likewise the conflict. The two main characters, Bain and Argon, seem to be going somewhere, but we don’t know exactly where or why. Chapters jump in time and place, leaving out scenes that affect the plotline.
It doesn’t help that words don’t have their regular meanings. It takes several uses before we realize that “lucid” means “crazy.” And I ask myself, “why?” And there is no answer.
I would like to give this book a higher rating, because there is a lot of wonderful imagery in it, and fascinating characters and relationships. A lot of thought has gone into the world building. However, this rating reflects my prediction of how many of my readers will understand and enjoy this book, as opposed to those that will become confused and disappointed and put it down before finishing it.
And a last suggestion to all authors; don’t have two different first-person-point-of-view characters in your story, especially if they are the same gender and similar age. Readers will never be able to get them straight, and it is very difficult to make them distinct enough from each other to help.
It is the author’s responsibility in every book to tread that fine line between telling us too much and boring us, and telling us too little and confusing us. For me, this book goes too far over the line into confusion. Recommended for those who are tired of having everything in the book laid out on a platter.
(3 / 5)