Skip to main content

Review of "Midnight" by Beverly Jenkins

On Friday, I wrote about the crap luck I've been having choosing books to read and how I wasn't sure whether I should continue reading Midnight by Beverly Jenkins.  Not long after publishing, I decided that I had had enough.  There are far too many good books out there (if only I could find one) for me to keep reading one that wasn't engaging me.

That was the main problem I had with this book.  It just wasn't pulling me into the world.  I couldn't see myself walking the same streets as Faith and Nick (and not just because I probably wouldn't have been in the same area of town as they were).  An author needs to really describe the setting for me to feel like I could go there for a visit, but this time Ms. Jenkins wasn't able to do that.  I just didn't feel as if I was in colonial Boston, even with all the name dropping.  Actually, each time that John Hancock or Sam Adams was mentioned I was pulled out of the story, which I am sure was not Ms. Jenkin's intention.

The other problem that I had was that there were portions that sounded like they came right out of a history book.  For instance:
The city of Boston was named after a town in England’s Lincolnshire County. Colonial Boston was the capital of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Following the end of the Seven Years’ War in 1763, it stood as the wealthiest and most influential city in the colonies. Its deep harbor and favorable geographic placement also made it the busiest colonial seaport; a remarkable accomplishment considering the city was founded by one man. From his days at school, Nick knew that the man was William Blackston or Blaxton, depending on which records were consulted, and in 1625 he had lived alone on the open grassy plain known to present-day citizens as the Boston Commons. When other Europeans arrived in 1636, they purchased hundreds of acres of land from him, which no doubt surprised the native population, who’d had no idea Blackston owned the land they and their ancestors had lived on for centuries.

Jenkins, Beverly (2010-10-26). Midnight (Kindle Locations 256-262). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

While learning about the history of the city of Boston is nice (I did live there for two years), I don't feel that this was the place for it.  As a matter of fact, this felt more like a lecture (history-infodump-apaloosa) than it did a part of the narrative.  There were a couple of other paragraphs like this in the first few chapters and each time I got to one of them I was pulled out of the book and found myself in a classroom instead.  Not good.

There were a couple of things that I liked about Midnight, most notably the mixed feelings Nick has about his father, Primus, who was killed in the first chapter.  Early on we learn that Nick left Boston to fight for the French during the Seven Year's War and that this drove a wedge between him and his father.  He is torn between the anger he felt towards his dad prior to learning of his death and his grief over the fact that he would never see him again.

Another thing that I liked was that Ms. Jenkins did a good job of describing the way the colonists felt during the period just prior to The Revolution.  While I couldn't picture myself walking into the Baptist Church that they went to, I could feel the character's edginess and uncertainty.

In the end, however, I couldn't get passed that meh feeling and I had to put it down.  Back to the library you go.  No stars.


Popular posts from this blog

Happy Bookaversary! A Review of "Edge of Darkness" by Karen Rose

Title: Edge of Darkness
Author: Karen Rose
ISBN: 9780399583087
Publisher: Berkeley
Series: Cincinnati Series
Price: $5.98 (Paperback) $7.99 (e-book) $28.28(Audible)

It seems like I've been reading Karen Rose novels my entire life.  I remember the day I came across Count to Ten in the Duane Reade on Queens Blvd.  I'd finished the paperback I brought with me to school that day while sitting in the Dining Hall eating lunch and needed something for the long bus ride home.  I almost didn't buy it because it was $9.99 and I hadn't gotten my financial aid money yet, but the cover copy called to me.  Not even the 500+ page count could scare me away.

I recently learned that Edge of Darkness is Ms. Rose's 20th book and in a strange way, I feel like a proud mama watching her child cross the stage to get their diploma.  I'm just a big ball of happy nostalgia, thinking back to all of the other books I've read by her and hopeful about the ones to come, so befor…

Fifteen Years Later: Review of "His Sinful Touch" by Candace Camp

Title: His Sinful Touch
Author: Candace Camp
ISBN: 0373789963
Publisher: HQN
Series: Mad Morelands #5
Price: $5.98 (Paperback) $5.99 (e-book) $19.96(Audible)

Most readers remember their first, the first book of their particular genre that they read, whether they enjoyed the book or not.  I have two firsts--the first romance I ever read was a Harlequin Intrigue written by Amanda Stevens.  If you've read my blog before you probably already know this.  The first historical romance I read was Mesmerized by Candace Camp, which was also the first book in her Mad Morelands series.  

I was a senior in high school when this series began and I remember seeing the paperback version of Mesmerized on the shelf at the Target on Queens Blvd (yes, I spent a lot of time on Queens Blvd as a teenager), and was pulled in by the gorgeous cover.  Apparently, that book has had several covers over the last 15 years, but this is the one I remember:

Isn't it pretty?  Of course from the cover I…

The Internet of Things: Review of "Hacking IT" by Kimberly Dean

Title: Hacking IT
Author: Kimberly Dean
ISBN: 9781386835561
Publisher: Self-published
Series: Hackers #1
Price: $3.99 (e-book) $9.99 (paperback)
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1/2

Have you ever seen the description of a book and known immediately that it was going to be awesome and upon reading it were faced with the possibility that it might actually be better than you originally thought?  For me, that book was Hacking IT by Kimberly Dean.  A female white hat hacker using her skills to uncover a black hat hacker, who has stepped away from his computer and entered the real world?  Um, yes, please.

From the Publisher:
Independent software developer Kylie Grant is on top of her game in the world of IT. She has loyal clients, a good reputation, and a prestigious membership in technology giant Afire Industries’ small business accelerator. Things are going well until she stumbles across an innocuous issue with the lighting in the building where she rents space. When she digs into the problem, she discovers some…

Review of "Come Sundown" by Nora Roberts

Title: Come Sundown
Author: Nora Roberts
ISBN: 1250123070
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Price: $14.99 (e-book) $16.49 (hardcover) $23.95 (Audible)

I read my first Nora Roberts novel when I was a 16-year-old high school junior.  I remember seeing her books in all of the drug stores long before the fateful day on which I decided to actually buy one but had never thought anything of them.  From that day on, La Nora became the gold standard--the author all others had to live up to, the one to beat.  I remember sitting at my mom's kitchen table with one of her paperbacks and a sheet of paper, marking down which of her books were available at the libraries near me.  Her backlog was (and still is) immense and I was going to read them all.  While I still haven't read all of her books, I've read a good chunk of them, many of which have a place on my virtual keeper shelf, which is why I was so deeply disappointed in Come Sundown.

From the PublisherA novel of suspense, fam…

Review of "Ace of Spades" by Sandra Owens

Title: Ace of Spades
Author: Sandra Owens
ISBN: 9781503948990
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Series: Aces & Eights #3
Price: $4.99 (e-book) $9.17 (paperback) Free (Kindle Unlimited)

I was really excited for this book.  I devoured the entire K2 series a couple of years ago, but somehow I missed the first two books of the Aces and Eights series.  I'd hoped that I'd be able to jump right into this book without having read the others, and in a way I was able to do so as the main plot had nothing to do with the others.  However, I feel that had I known the characters' backgrounds a little bit more, I would have felt more of a connection to them, which would have helped me have a better reading experience.

From the Publisher:
Two FBI agents struggle with desire in the shadow of a killer, in the third installment of Aces & Eights. Nate Gentry has been a rock for his two younger brothers since the day their mom walked out and left them with their abusive father. Now that…