Sample
  • Midnight

  • Skulduggery Pleasant, Book 11
  • By: Derek Landy
  • Narrated by: Kevin Hely
  • Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (31 ratings)

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Midnight  By  cover art

Midnight

By: Derek Landy
Narrated by: Kevin Hely
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Publisher's summary

Skulduggery Pleasant and Valkyrie Cain are back in their most gripping story yet, as book 11, Midnight, picks up where Resurrection left off - and runs.

For years, Valkyrie Cain has struggled to keep her loved ones safe from harm, plunging into battle - time and time again - by Skulduggery Pleasant’s side, and always emerging triumphant.

But now the very thing that Valkyrie fights for is in danger, as a ruthless killer snatches her little sister in order to lure Valkyrie into a final confrontation. With Skulduggery racing to catch up and young sorcerer Omen scrambling along behind, Valkyrie only has twelve hours to find Alice before it’s too late. The clock is ticking....

©2018 Derek Landy (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Midnight

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Just great

It lived up to the series expectations perdectly and I was not disappointed at all. Val has grown so much but has so much more to learn. I look forward to the next installment - hurry up Derek

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Bloated, cringe-inducing mess

When I read the "soft restart" of the series, i.e. book 10, I thought Derek Landy had the skill to do a spin-off with a new protagonist, but just didn't have the stones to do so (thus the split protagonist thing that didn't work and will continue not to work, as proven by this book). I am no longer sure that is the case.

At its core is that the it has the same issue as the last book - this next set of series could have worked as a spin-off focused on Omen. It could have maybe worked as a continuation of Valkyrie's story. It does not however work for the both of them. It's pace breaking, it's distracting, and while I am perfectly happy with the characterisations of both protagonists, they should have been in separate books, end of. As it currently stands, they are holding each other back, and that is bad because characterisation of the protagonists is the one thing Derek Landy has going on now.

Let me be clear - Landy never had particularly good storytelling skills. He has a very good writing style, intelligent, quippy dialogue (Whedonesque, but in a good way) but his book-central stories were always shallow, with mysteries being quickly resolved to result in a back-and-forth between goodies and baddies. This was, in my view, compensated by having a somewhat ambitious and involved grand story (with a ruined culmination when he probably decided halfway through the 9th book to have a soft ending, but that is another topic) so it didn't bug me as much in the first nine books. The current attempt at multiple grand over-arching stories is failing, hard, both because of their pacing and how uninspired they are. The minor and major villains are cliched as hell, with the current minor villain being poorly built up for the role, and yet we are beaten over the head with him. When it comes to the major villain, I wanted to avoid spoilers, but come on, people need to be aware of the *cringe* they are getting into - the ex-girlfriend with the secret child, really? That's your trope? And she is also incredibly attached to said child and would sacrifice everything for it after not seeing it for 400 years? Holy generic tropization, Batman. Sure, there always are some cliches (they are there for a reason, and some are good) but not in main characters of some renown. His characterisation for minor and antagonistic characters was always good in the original series, but seems to me whatever he had there, he has lost it. I regret buying this book and the rest of the series, and if you haven't bought them yet, don't.

On the bright side of things, I am getting used to Kevin Hely (though his choice for a drawl voice for Skulduggery remains weird to me) and while I still think he should have picked a different voice for the titular character, I am appreciating how well he is doing the rest of them. Everything new and different is less jarring after 28 hours of listening and becoming less new and different, I guess.

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