The Midnight Palace, by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

All Hallow's Read!
Give a book for Halloween!

[Image shows flaming train on tracks] In 1930s Calcutta, a group of orphans who have become a family discover that one of their number has a secret sibling, a bloody family history, and a deadly enemy. That might sound good, but this book has terrible pacing, plotholes big enough to drive a flaming train through (see diagram [Image of flaming train, driving through a hole labeled plothole]), and character contradictions that come off as lazy rather than shocking. My biggest complaint, and what kept me sighing with frustration, is that it relies entirely on exposition rather than action. Spookiness: 2.5/5 Ghosts

Spooky elements: There's a flame-throwing demon guy, but even he's not sinister enough to give weight to the poorly written plot.

Good for: Do yourself a favor and don't bother with this one. I could hardly believe it was by the same author who wrote the well-paced, totally spooky The Prince of Mist.


Add a comment