I have been introduced to Zafón’s writing by my bff, Mel with her favourite book The Shadow of the Wind a few years ago. So when I picked up Midnight Palace, I was no stranger to Zafón’s work. He is the type of author whereby it gets hard to put his books down until you done reading and he always have a way to hook his readers no matter what.
The Midnight Palace was written in the early 1990’s for a younger audience as in the young adults but honestly it is appealing to any fan of his and any book lover who appreciates a good read. It is the second book on a trilogy but I must admit that I hadn’t read the first book, The Prince of Mist.
The Midnight Palace is a mystery/thriller/horror novel and the story has lots of unexpected twist and turns during the chapters and is actually quite fast paced. Also, the reasons as to why the twins had to be split up to be rescued are told quite a few times during the story but it kept changing, making the readers wonder and unsure of the reason until the very end of the story. All the characters had depth and were interesting.
The story is told around orphaned twins, a boy and a girl who got split at birth. The split was an attempt to rescue them against a mysterious man responsible for their parent’s death. The girl was raised by their grandmother and the boy was raised in an orphanage with other orphans. The twins are not aware of each other and as fate should have it, circumstances bring the twins together after sixteen years. Ben and Sheree (the twins) starts learning the truth about their family and starts to learn more and more about the mysterious man that was after them.
Let me not give away too much of the story and spoil it for those who intends on reading this novel.
Taken from the back cover of the paperback novel:
“1916, Calcutta. A man pauses for breath outside the ruins of Jheeter’s Gate station knowing he has only hours to live. Pursued by assassins, he must ensure the safety of two newborn twins, before disappearing into the night to meet his fate.
1932. Ben and his friends are due to leave the orphanage which has been their home for sixteen years. Tonight will be the final meeting of their secret club, in the old ruin they christened The Midnight Palace. Then Ben discovers he has a sister – and together they learn the tragic story of their past, as a shadowy figure lures them to a terrifying showdown in the ruins of Jheeter’s Gate staton.”
What the media had to say about The Midnight Palace:
“A triumph of the storyteller’s art. I couldn’t put it down” – Daily Telegraph
“Will grip you from start to finish” – Daily Express
“Original and surprisingly moving…holds the readers expectations until the final twist” – Observer
“I couldn’t put it down but didn’t want to rush it as every sentence is beautifully crafted and every character unique” – Evening Standard
“Murders most foul, chilling crimes and dark deeds… Carlos Ruiz Zafón, author of The Shadow of the Wind, locates his ghost story in The Midnight Palace” – VOGUE