Monday, January 18, 2010

Midnight Never Come by Marie Brennan

Midnight Never Come is another book set in Queen Elizabeth's court--but not just Elizabeth's court. There is another queen in London, a kind of mirror court, the London Faerie court. Her name is Invidiana, and she's quite likely the most ruthless creature in London.

The characters we follow are Lune, a faerie courtier who has fallen out of favor with Invidiana and is desperate to find a way back the queens good graces. The opportunity becomes to gain access to Walsingham and his intelligence by pretending to be one of the ladies of one of Elizabeth's courtiers. Deven is one of the Elizabeth's guardsmen, working intelligence for Walsingham. He has ambitions--promotions and patrons--that eventually fall by the wayside (mostly) in favor of devoted service--and his love for Anne Montrose (Lune).

It's quite an undertaking, a book this ambitious. Trying to meld two political worlds--one historical and one fantastical--must have taken quite a bit of organization and imagination. The book was well-researched, but for all the gossip and politicking that we know was happening at the time, the two worlds simply didn't seem as enmeshed as they were supposed to be, and so in the end the book seemed a bit lighter in substance than it maybe should have been.

Still, for the most part I enjoyed the book and what it tried to do. It took me a month to read, with all the holidaying and road tripping (I could read while driving but I feel the compulsive need to be a second driver when I'm in the passenger seat--and my husband is always interrupting me when I try to read in the car, anyway) and all that, but in other circumstances I'm sure I would have breezed through it in a week or so.

Recommended for those who enjoy faerie stories and light historical fiction.


bermudaonion said...

I haven't tried a faerie story yet - I'm just not sure they're for me.

Zibilee said...

This sounds interesting to me, but like Bermudaonion, I have never read a faerie story before. I think I am going to try to give this one a shot though, as it does have a bit of historical fiction in it. Great review, glad that you liked the book. On another note: how is the leg doing?