Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Book Review: Born at Midnight by C.C. Hunter

After finishing the last page of Born at Midnight, I didn’t think about the story once the entire night. It was only when I sat down at my computer to write this review that I realized that while I enjoyed this book, the story left no lasting impression. The main character, Kylie, is a supernatural being that can see ghosts, but she is unwilling to admit that she is any different from any other 17 year old. Her parents are on the verge of a divorce and at the recommendation of Kylie’s therapist, she is shipped off to Shadow Falls Summer camp for troubled youth. While Shadow Falls is indeed a place for troubled teens, Kylie quickly learns that this is no ordinary camp. Surrounded by witches, fairies, vampires, shape shifters, and werewolves; Kylie must accept that she too is a descendant of the gods. The only other alternative is that she has a brain tumor. This premise is nothing new, but the story is entertaining nonetheless.

The most appealing aspect of this book is the characters. Kylie is a very likable protagonist who is on a journey of self-discovery. Learning to accept that there are things in her life that she cannot change is just one of the many hurdles that she must face. Her anger towards her parents and reluctance to admit that she is anything other than ordinary is understandable given her unique situation. Often times when characters are in these types of situations they come off as whiny or slow on the uptake, so it’s refreshing to have a protagonist that readers can empathize with. Kylie’s roommates Miranda and Della are quirky and fun and some of the more humorous scenes are when they are giving Kylie a crash course in what life can be like when you’re rooming with a witch and a vampire. There is even a perverted shape shifter that is sure to give more than one reader a chuckle.

The laughs stop however, when the plot begins to tread on familiar ground. Tell me, have you ever found yourself in a situation where you had to juggle the affections of three different men? No? Honestly, unless you’re a rock star, the likelihood of this happening is fairly slim. Kylie, however, constantly finds herself at the center of a lot of male attention. There is the handsome, emotionally available fairy that just wants to make it work, the sexy werewolf that tries to keep his distance, and the sleazy ex-boyfriend who just can’t take a hint. Kylie makes out with, agonizes over, and rejects all three of these men at least once in this novel. I’m all for love triangles and even the occasional love square, but this whole scenario was over the top.

Reading Born at Midnight was a little like watching a movie on cable. Chances are you’ve seen several movies just like it, but you continue to watch regardless because it’s entertaining. The problem with these types of movies is that once the credits start to roll, you get up and get on with your life, instantly forgetting what you just watched. Or in this case, what you’ve just read. This isn’t to say that this is a bad book. It just isn’t anything that fans of the genre haven’t read countless times before.

Rating: 3/5 Stars


  1. Why must multiple guys always be in love with the protagonist and why can't the protagonist ever seem to make up her mind about which one she likes?

    Great review, Laura. I'll see if I can get this one from my library since I still think it sounds good enough but not worth buying.

    Oh, I managed to get my hands on A Certain Slant of Light :) It'll unfortunately take some time before I read it though because I have a bunch of books to review.

  2. Tell me, have you ever found yourself in a situation where you had to juggle the affections of three different men?


    Just kidding. I'll admit there have been times in my life when I was *flirting* with at least three different people, so it seems possible there were times when there were at least three different people flirting with *me.* But certainly no Olympic-level competitions over my affection. :-)

    I love the title of this book, in any case.

  3. Aw, too bad on this one! Though Kylie sounds fantastic, and while it must be nice to have every good looking boy in a 50 mile radius be interested in you, it's kind of difficult to relate to;) Loved your movie analogy, very fitting!

    Oh, and I see you're reading The Greyfriar, I just finished this one and really enjoyed it:) I'll be interested to see what you think!

  4. Hmmm I've heard mixed things about this, and while I was excited to read it at first, I hear it's rather watered-down and formulaic. I appreciate your honest take on this, Laura!

    PS...I hope you're enjoying Vampire Empire! It's one of my newest favs!

  5. Canadian Girl: You know, I ask the same question every time I read a book where the protagonist has multiple love interests! I can't wait to hear what you think of A Certain Slant of Light!

    Lisa: LoL. Now, don't be modest! I bet you have olympic level competitions for your affections all the time ;o) I agree, Born at Midnight is a really good title!

    Jenny: It might be nice to have hansome men vying for our love, but I imagine it would also be pretty darned stressful! I can't wait to read your review for Greyfriar!

    Melissa: Born at Midnight was definitely formulaic, but it was still a decent read. So far I'm really liking Greyfriar! I can see why it would be one of your favorites!

  6. I like the cover on this book. I'm feeling the same way about the current book I'm reading.