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Book of Night Audio CD – Unabridged, May 3, 2022
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In the vein of Neil Gaiman and Erin Morgenstern, #1 NYT bestselling author Holly Black’s stunning new audiobook is a dark fantasy of betrayals and cabals with a dissolute thief of shadows at the center of it all.
Charlie Hall has never found a lock she couldn’t pick, a book she couldn’t steal, or a bad decision she wouldn’t make.
She's spent half her life working for gloamists, magicians who manipulate shadows to peer into locked rooms, strangle people in their beds, or worse. Gloamists guard their secrets greedily, creating an underground economy of grimoires. And to rob their fellow magicians, they need Charlie Hall.
Now, she’s trying to distance herself from past mistakes, but getting out isn’t easy. Bartending at a dive, she’s still entirely too close to the corrupt underbelly of the Berkshires. Not to mention that her sister Posey is desperate for magic, and that Charlie's shadowless, and possibly soulless, boyfriend has been hiding things from her. When a terrible figure from her past returns, Charlie descends into a maelstrom of murder and lies.
Determined to survive, she’s up against a cast of doppelgangers, mercurial billionaires, gloamists, and the people she loves best in the world―all trying to steal a secret that will give them vast and terrible power
"Dark, strange, thick with mystery and twists―a story so believable in its magic, you'll be keeping one eye on your shadow as you turn the pages." ―Leigh Bardugo, New York Times bestselling author of Ninth House
"If Neil Gaiman channeled Stephen King, the result might be this book...scintillating prose, whiplash twists, and a voice of character that demands to be heard from again.”― ames Rollins, New York Times bestselling author of The Starless Crown
“Heart, soul, and a bit of kink―The Book of Night is smart, decadent fun.”―Kelly Link, Pulitzer Prize Finalist
A Macmillan Audio production from Tor Books.
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Praise for Holly Black:
“No one writes like Holly Black―eerie and vivid.” ―John Green, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“I will never forget my first time reading Holly Black…Such a beautiful writer.” ―Daisy Johnson, Man Booker Prize finalist and author of Sisters
“Black is a master at world-building” ―The New York Times Book Review
Praise for The Cruel Prince:
“Lush, dangerous, a dark jewel of a book…. This delicious story will seduce you and leave you desperate for just one more page.” ―Leigh Bardugo, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Six of Crows and the Shadow and Bone trilogy
“I require book two immediately. Holly is the Faerie Queen.” ―Victoria Aveyard, #1 bestselling author of the Red Queen series
About the Author
- Publisher : Macmillan Audio; Unabridged edition (May 3, 2022)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 1250850126
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250850126
- Item Weight : 9.9 ounces
- Dimensions : 1 x 1 x 1 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #665,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on May 10, 2022
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Book of Night fits neatly into the author’s canon: her world-building, her inclusion of magic, her thoroughly-realized characters, and her astute almost preternatural grasp of exactly how much information and detail to feed her readers —and what to withhold— will all feel familiar in the best ways to her fans.
Charlie, the novel’s heroine, has the grit, determination, and drive to pursue her goals. Charlie’s activities involve theft, larceny, and the art of the grift, and she tiptoes across dangerous tightrope strung above highly toxic, unprincipled foes. Charlie also works to protect her younger sister (sometimes from herself), and tries to figure out her complicated relationship with her secretive but gentle and kind lover, Vince, work.
These traits make her intriguing, but it is the author’s deft handling of Charlie’s unorthodox past, her traumas, wounds (literal and figurative), insecurities, and disappointments that make the reader root for Charlie despite her faults and rash decisions.
I am eager to read more of Holly Black’s adult fiction, and I’ll still gobble up her YA novels as well. This author truly delights readers of many ages. If you have not read her books, hie thee to a bookstore. You won’t be sorry.
To start, we are introduced to Charlie who is described as a girl who was "crooked, from the day she was born" and "had fingers made for pick pockets, a tongue for lying, and a shriveled cherry pit for a heart." This girl is constantly described as being the best at what she does and that she "[had] been too good at it... now she was a regular person." This was established within the first few pages of the book.
So, Charlie for the most part gave up this life 10 months prior. Okay, but then the rest of the book happens and she has a complete shift in personality within the first 100 pages. For a FMC who supposedly has seen some serious stuff and "not a lot rattled her," the moment someone does something she didn't expect, she turned into a innocent, wide-eyed little girl and proceeds to take the entire situation in the worst way possible and acts irrationally and pretty childish at times.
She also is apparently always "intrigued" and "excited" about a potential new job and/or heist because we are also told that she gets a HUGE thrill over letting out her "worst impulses" but this surprise? Oh no, it's "her party and she will cry if she wants" to vibe.
Without giving away the plot or specifics, something happens and despite Charlie's supposed being a bada$$ and has seen so much stuff since she was like 14, she suddenly turns into a "I can't possibly believe..." and "[insert name] may want to [unalive] me" like she has never, ever seen or heard of this kind of thing before and she has never been in danger (yes she absolutely has), BUT she supposedly can read people like an open book?
For a character that is repeatedly told to me as a reader that she is super smart and has so much experience, she acts for the vast majority of the book like someone who is clueless to the not-so-legal activities when she herself is a con artist. She is also super hypocritical and does not like to be called out when she is clearly in the wrong, but we are supposed to feel bad for her because "she just f**ks everything up because that is her family legacy."
There is also the matter of the way too many flashbacks in this book. Rather than show how clever Charlie is and how good she is in the present timeline (especially since it would show how much she had learned over the YEARS she has done this), we only get a glimpse of her abilities in the "The Past" chapters when are nothing but flashbacks where they could easily be summarized into a paragraph or a sentence.
Yes there are some key moments in her life that is important, but I feel like they were only put there to make me care about Charlie as a character because what she does in the present timeline wouldn't make me like her otherwise.
Also the book in question is constantly referred to as "The Book of Blights" for 2/3 of the entire book by several characters but then for no reason, it gets referred to as "The Book of Night" and it is never commented on or questioned. I honestly went back to see if I had missed something but I could not find an explanation as to why this ONE character refers to it as "The Book of Night" and Charlie has literally nothing to say about it. My mind went to "Oh okay, roll credits then."
The magic system was... confusing. Even after reading some parts multiple times, it didn't feel fleshed out or maybe it just wasn't described very well. I think this was supposed to be on the more "softer magic" system edge where not much is really explained or easily understood. It's definitely not Brandon Sanderson quality magic systems.
This book was insanely frustrating for me. I'm glad that this book was for some readers out there because we all should read books that at the very least entertain us, but I would rather read Holly Black's Cruel Prince any day then this.
I liked that even though the protagonist made bad decisions - she wasn’t dumb, she was impulsive and reckless in a calculated way more than anything - more of a “I know this is a bad idea but I’m going to do it anyway” and that is something I can def get behind in a fantasy mc. I also liked how she was morally grey but still loyal to those close to her etc. (def some parallels between Jude and Charlie, but I think Charlie is a bit softer than Jude)
I really hope there is a second book coming: I did not feel ready for the story to end. Also, I think there’s some re-read value after knowing one of the twists.
Finally, as a fan of the Folk of the Air Series I think you may be disappointed by the amount of romance/tension in it. But what was there, I really enjoyed.
Top reviews from other countries
I was not disappointed! What an exciting new world and characters to get to know. This book reminded me about why I love urban fantasy. This was classic UF and I loved it.