Friday, July 18, 2014

DNF Explanation: Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne

Read: 123 of 368
Received: ARC from publisher, via NetGalley
Released: July 8, 2014

What can I say about Midnight Thief that hasn't already been said in pretty much every review I've already read for this book?

Not much. For once, my opinion seems to align with the norm. Hooray! It's nice to be able to join the popular crowd's table once in a while.

I just wish that didn't mean I ended up disliking the book. Because, oh boy, I did NOT like this book.

So, echoing practically everyone, I loved the set up—assassins, thieves, magic, hate-turned-love—basically all the ingredients of a perfect book. And, after reading the prequel novella and loving it, I figured it was a pretty safe bet I'd love Midnight Thief to pieces.

Wrong, wrong, oh so wrong. Sure the ingredients are great, but you can't make a great cake with expired and low-grade ingredients.

(Though, I was just recently fed a sweet potato casserole that was made, unbeknownst to me until AFTER I had consumed a far-too-large portion, with milk that had expired a month ago and miraculously was not spoiled. It was actually the best sweet potato casserole I've had, so I dodged food poisoning and came out ahead, which is completely undermining my analogy here. But, anyway.)

Or, in the case of a book, you can't make a good story with mediocre world building, hollow cliches, weak writing, and (the gravest sin of all) bland, stupid characters.

The final straw for me was when orphan-helping thief (yet righteously pure, can you tell she irritated me?) Kyra joins the assassins' guild because she'll get paid a lot but then rants and gripes about how killing is wrong and all the members of the assassins' guild are evil meanies. Please, I'm picking up a book about thieves and assassins because I want them to be badass thieves and assassins. I don't want Sister Superior (irrationally and hypocritically) raining on my parade for 368 pages.

(So, no, unlike old milk, apparently, there is no hope for books with rotten ingredients.)

There's apparently a twist at around the 3/4 mark that redeems things (to a point, so I hear), but I couldn't bring myself to push through to that point. I DNF-ed a third of the way in and although I keep getting lured in by the siren song of that premise, I'm quickly reminded of all the reasons why I DNF-ed in the first place and the urge to pick it up again is squelched. WANTING this book to be something more than it is just doesn't make it so.

Bottom line

If I were (a lot) younger and hadn't had my expectations bar set super high by the awesome novella, I might have actually liked Midnight Thief. Maybe. At least, more than I did. I probably would have at least finished it.

As it is, nope. Go back to the drawing board, clean up the writing issues, flesh out the world, and develop those characters! Midnight Thief could have been so much more.  


Looking for another book like this?
You might like:

 Click on the pictures to go to my reviews.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...