Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Book Review: Midnight City by J Barton Mitchell

Ten years ago, earth was conquered by aliens. Today, earth’s major cities are home to giant obelisks that attract all adults infected with “the tone” leaving only children and “the heedless” (humans unaffected by the tone) left roaming around. Many have banded together – either in roving gangs or fairly organized societies (such as Midnight City) – but Holt is a loner, accompanied only by his dog. Until he meets Mira (a “freebooter” wanted by Midnight City) and Zoey (a strange young girl who has no memories but knows that she needs to get to Midnight City).

MIDNIGHT CITY is an action-packed page-turner that shows what earth might be like at the mercy of aliens. It definitely hits some familiar post-apocalyptic beats – such as Holt’s daring supply run into a flooded drugstore – but adds a supernatural element in the form of artifacts from “The Strange Lands”. “Freebooters” like Mira are experts in making useful combos that can get them out of scrapes and in collecting artifacts that can fetch high prices at market. But it can also be quite humorous (such as Holt and Mira’s “meet cute” in an abandoned house where Mira is taking a hot bath) – so it’s not your typical gloom and doom.

Yes, the narrative is very plot driven, but the characters don’t suffer in the least for it. Holt’s gruff resourcefulness and Mira’s scrappy charm pair well and Zoey was awesome in every way. Three loners + a dog (‘the Max”) = excellent team. That’s just good math! Also, I’d be remiss not to mention the villainous Lenore. The book world can always use more villainous Lenores IMHO.

As the start of a series, MIDNIGHT CITY answers some of our burning questions (where did Zoey come from? What did Mira do to get banished from Midnight City? Will Mira and Holt finally kiss?) and brings up other questions to be explored later (why do the aliens want Zoey so badly? Why is Holt on the run from a gang? Will “the Max” find an everlasting gobstopper to satiate his sweet tooth?)

MIDNIGHT CITY comes out October 30, 2012. Find out more about it at the author's website.

See index of all dystopian reviews at Presenting Lenore

FTC disclosure: NetGalley


Sarah said...

NICE! Wow, you've convinced me to give this one a try and I thought I was pretty burnt out on dystopians.

Zibilee said...

As I mentioned yesterday, there is something so appealing to me about this one, and I really want to mark my calendar to see when it becomes available!