Thursday, December 20

Midnighters: Blue Noon - Scott Westerfeld

Following their greatest battle, where the darklings' plan for Rex was unveiled and very nearly succeeded, the Midnighters should be jubilant. Instead they're more fractured than ever before - Rex may be permanently caught between his darkling and Midnighter selves, Dess can't forgive Melissa for invading her mind against her will, and Melissa's shame over her past deeds hangs over her. Even Jess doesn't get to enjoy alone time with Jonathan - he never seems to touch her except during the secret hour, and younger sister Beth is getting entirely too nosy for her own good.
The group need some time to repair their unity, but when the blue time arrives in the middle of the day all bets are off. Melissa can sense the jubilation of the darklings who, unlike the Midnighters, knew this was coming. Mapping the disturbance and overlaying it on her previous figures, Dess suspects that the blue hour is causing a tear through normal time, which could be catastrophic. This theory is supported by the behaviour of the darklings' human assistants, who are suddenly moving to the other side of the country. This could be the Midnighter's biggest challenge yet, and Jess is at the centre of it all.
The resolution to the Midnighters trilogy is taut and involving. All the main characters have a hidden flaw that is revealed and must be overcome, not always without sacrifice.
I know these reviews have been a little sketchy, but the problem with reviewing a trilogy is giving enough detail to give a flavour of the work without ruining the firs books because of revelations in reviews of later parts of the series. In a series without end each novel tends to be whole within itself, though part of an overall arc, but trilogies build more tightly upon each forerunner, so that pivotal plot points and suspenseful moments in the first book become integral to the second. I'd hate to give away something vital, (she says, on the off-chance that someone's reading this, and even making reading choices as a result), so I'll keep it all unpromisingly vague instead. If you like FSF then, despite the paucity of usefulness of this review, this is not only an author but a series worth reading. - Alex

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