Author: Livia Blackburne
Release: July 8th 2014
Genre: Fantasy, Supernatural, YA
#1 in the Midnight Thief duology
Sequel: Daughter of Dusk (#2)
Growing up on Forge’s streets has taught Kyra how to stretch a coin. And when that’s not enough, her uncanny ability to scale walls and bypass guards helps her take what she needs.
But when the leader of the Assassins Guild offers Kyra a lucrative job, she hesitates. She knows how to get by on her own, and she’s not sure she wants to play by his rules. But he’s persistent—and darkly attractive—and Kyra can’t quite resist his pull.
Tristam of Brancel is a young Palace knight on a mission. After his best friend is brutally murdered by Demon Riders, a clan of vicious warriors who ride bloodthirsty wildcats, Tristam vows to take them down. But as his investigation deepens, he finds his efforts thwarted by a talented thief, one who sneaks past Palace defenses with uncanny ease.
When a fateful raid throws Kyra and Tristam together, the two enemies realize that their best chance at survival—and vengeance—might be to join forces. And as their loyalties are tested to the breaking point, they learn a startling secret about Kyra’s past that threatens to reshape both their lives.
Ah, it's such a nice feeling when you finish a book you genuinely enjoyed and had fun reading. So refreshing.
Midnight Thief was also one of my most anticipated non-sequel books (one among the three releasing in July) and I was so hyped for it at first, however, that soon waned because it hasn't gotten the best reviews so far from readers who got ARCs. Personally though, I really ended up liking this.
I think what did it was that it starts out as a normal, innocent thief/assassin book and you don't really think twice about that, expecting a simple story of stealing, murdering and betrayal, but then the plot starts to thicken and there are some supernatural fantasy elements involved as well, earning some nice plot twists. I mean, there was no real shock value involved since most of it you could have seen coming, but I still quite enjoyed where the story was going.
Nevertheless, I think the main reason I liked the book this much was that I liked the MCs. Sometimes, that's all it comes down to, and it's definitely the case with this book. The characters had personality and while I wouldn't exactly say that they were fully fleshed out, they were characterized well enough.
As a result, I was also able to fully appreciate the character relationships, which were spectacularly done. The platonic and familial relationships are developed very relatable and, most of all, realistic so that I could sympathize; the romances were absolutely phenomenal. There's sort of a love triangle, but not really — it's very reminiscent of Shadow and Bone in that, it's very similar to the Darkling/Alina/Mal love triangle, and maybe that's the reason why I enjoyed it as much as I did, but in all seriousness, I think Blackburne simply handled it extremely well. Nothing ever truly happened between James and Kyra, but you could definitely feel the chemistry and sexual tension between them so that it was believable.
And then there's obviously the main romance between Kyra and Tristam that I was blown away by. This is a prime example of how to build up romantic relationships leisurely and patiently, so that when they finally kiss it's like the grand finale and it feels right. There was no insta-love or even instra-attraction, the two slowly build up a kind of trust and partnership that develops into more later on. It was convincing and I totally shipped them.
Ultimately, I will admit that it really took a little while for me to really get into the book, which happened around page 100, right when I was slowly losing hope. However, when I finally did, I honestly enjoyed it so, so much and I cannot wait for the sequel. The book ties up neatly, with most of the main storylines resolved, but still with enough of a soft cliffhanger that makes you dying to read the next book.