Midnighters Series by Scott Westerfeld

Books in this series:
(1) The Secret Hour
(2) Touching Darkness
(3) Blue Noon

Author: Scott Westerfeld
Source: Personal Copies
Format: Paperback
Genre: Speculative Fiction, Science Fiction



Midnighter is the term used to describe those who were born at the stroke of midnight. Based on its basic concept, the Midnighters series is indeed one of the most original series that I’ve ever come across thus far. Creatively written by the author, Scott Westerfeld, this series is the cross-breed from multiple genres: fantasy, paranormal and science fiction to name a few. With the right combination of suspense element, woven together with some mysteries, lore and a dash of romance, the Midnighters series – without doubt – is able to engage the interest of multi layers of readers and its varieties making it a very interesting read.

The strange world of midnighters only occurs at the heart of Bixby, Oklahoma. While normally there are only 24 hours per day, there is the 25th in this world which is known as “The Blue Hour”. For ordinary people, this extra hour passes by in a blink of the eyes but for the midnighters, they could live in this hour like usual. Only difference is that, they have to live in it along with the sinister, ancient creatures known as the Darklings and Slithers. According to the midnighter’s lore, there used to be a huge bunch of midnighters who lived and protected the small town of Bixby. However, the numbers ceased drastically for an unknown reason and the lore itself stopped about fifty years before the beginning of the book.

The new generation of midnighters only consist of five young teenagers: Rex the Seer, Melissa the Mindcaster, Dess the Polymath, Jonathan the Acrobat and Jessica – the new girl in town – whose power is not yet known until the end of book one. Despite their different personalities, they work together to investigate the truth that happen to their predecessors, saving one of their own and also saved Bixby and the world from turning into the monsters’ buffet. What sort of things do they have to do to win this seamlessly impossible battle against these creepy creatures? And what kind of sacrifice that need to be made to make this happen?

The Midnighters series proves to the readers what a genius author Westerfeld really is. He integrates some mathematical and linguistics concepts into these books making them somewhat unique till it is hard to find something else to compare them to. The author brings forth the idea that number “13” and also words with thirteen letters are crucial in the fight against the monsters along with light/heat and anything that belongs to the new world and technology. Number “12”, on the other hand, is specifically associates with the Darklings. For example, Bixby located at 36˚00’00”N (which is multiple of 12) 96˚00’00”W (another multiple of 12) and the sum of individual digits is 24, another multiple of 12. It is said in this book that The Blue Hour only happens in Bixby because of these strong associations. This mathematical assimilation into this series totally intrigues me as it makes something that is supposed to be fiction feels totally real.

The row of characters is another thing that I admire. Despite of choosing only one main character, Westerfeld put all five of them alternately onto the spotlight. Throughout the course of this series, readers get the chance to know each one of them and the reasons that make them who they are. Among all five of these characters, I fell in love with Rex since the first book in this series. He is the self-imposed leader of the group and I see that despite the refusal from some of the members, they still turn to him when they face ultimate challenges. Besides that, Rex is also a selfless person with a dark past of his own. This flaw makes him more realistic and likeable.

In a nutshell, I cannot really find anything that I hate about this series. I completely enjoyed it as it has a bit of almost everything. I’ve to admit that it may be confusing at first and that it takes a little time to let the basic concept to sink in, but once that phase is over, these books will certainly be unputdownable.

Favourite Quote: In the blue time, math kicked ass - Dess the Polymath

18 comments:

  1. I read the 1st one and I didn't like it so I didn't read the rest of the series. After your review MAYBE I will give it a second chance.

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  2. I love Scott Westerfeld's writing, having read Uglies through to Specials (not Extras though). I haven't read any of his other writing, but this does tempt me to further research it!

    Great review, and thanks for sharing :)

    -Jean x
    P.S. I am from the CEP!

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  3. cool!!!! it's really original!! i might love it. thanks for sharing shy!! =)

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  4. <3 scott's books! I have to start this series!

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  5. Great review! I enjoyed the first book but found the focus on 13 letter words a little too much...but like you said, maybe I should have just kept going. Westerfeld is great!

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  6. I've heard of this one before, it sounds very interesting and fun. I will add it to my list. Thanks for the great review!! =)

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  7. While I have not read any of his books yet, this one does sounds very promising. In fact, it sounds like Xmens with all super power and abilities. I think I will like the series too =)

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  8. I just got the first book in the series, and after your review I think I will move it to the top of my TBR pile. These books sound amazing!

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  9. I still have to read any books written by Scott Westerfeld. Heard a lot about his books. ;) Great review.

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  10. I've thought about reading this, but I hadn't read a great review of it yet...now, I think you've convinced me! Excellent review :)

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  11. I've had this on my TBR pile for a while now and am definitely looking forward to reading this. Thoroughly enjoyed reading your review!

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  12. I can't believe I have never heard of this series before. It sounds so good and original. I'll definitely add it to my TBR pile, I think I'd enjoy reading something as unique as these books.

    Thanks for your review!

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  13. I've heard of this series before but I didn't really know what it was about. It sounds like a fascinating premise for a series! I'll have to keep my eye out for these books in the future :)

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  14. Wow, this sounds like an awesome series. Never heard of it before but now I will definitely look up the books.

    Thanks for this great review!

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  15. Been wondering about these, since I think Scott Westerfeld is such a good write

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  16. I've only read Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld and really liked his writing. Going to keep an eye out for this series. Thanks for great review!

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