Thursday, February 12, 2009


CYNDERE'S MIDNIGHT by JEFFREY OVERSTREET is the new sequel to Auralia's Colors by Waterbrook Publishing.

House Abascar has fallen in a torrential firestorm and Auralia has been transformed and taken by the mysterious Northchildren. In the wake of the destruction King Calraven tries to hold together the refugee survivors of his once great house, Auralia's young friend, ale boy, now impervious to flame, roams the land saving people from the ruins and from Cent Regus beastmen seeking to plunder the remains. Meanwhile, the heiress, Cyndere, has lost her husband to the beastmen as he sought to find survivors in Abascars ruins and she hopes to fulfill their dream of freeing the brutish beastmen from the Cent Regus curse of the Essence.

Mr. Overstreet has not lost his flare for dramatic prose. It is quite lyrical at times and while some complain of the broken conventions of writing, I say, rules were made to be broken--at least if it produces an interesting product. On the upbeat, Cyndere's midnight seems more focused than its predecessor and Overstreet being a Christian novelist we can begin to find the allegory that may be lurking beneath the obvious. Personally, I'm glad to see that element coming least I believe I'm seeing it :)

On the downbeat, Cyndere's midnight suffers a bit from the lack of Auralia. And while I understand the progression of the plot, she was a very interesting character. Still Cyndere begins to become endearing, though I have to say, my personal favorites here are the ale boy and the beastman, Jordam. The beastmen are great characters and add the action element here. Unfortunately the novel doesn't MOVE swiftly, but for the patient reader, you'll find an enjoyable sequel.


Robert Treskillard said...

I actually enjoyed Cyndere better than Auralia.

Maybe because I'm married and could relate more to a grown up than a child. But then again, Cyndere is a bit pouty whereas Auralia is courageous. Hmmm...

But her echoes are still there ... and I think that is the key.

Thanks for the review, James.

James Somers said...

They're a bit different...both have enjoyable qualities. I'm a big YA reader and writer so, I like courageous kids alot...why I like the ale boy I guess. Auralia I think was more than courageous...she saw through to the crux of the matter, beyond the red tape of social conformity to the heart.


Your post reads like the one I typed up a couple days ago for the second day of the tour. Dagnabit!

There's some cliche out there about "great minds" and "thinking alike"--heard it? (laugh)

I couldn't really connect with Cyndere, but I did like the ale boy and the beastman. And Cal-raven. He was kinda cool, too.

Rebecca LuElla Miller said...

Cal-raven is probably my favorite character of the series, but in this one, I connected most with Jordam. My working theory is that Cyndere didn't do anything. She was depressed and wanted to mourn her dead. The one action she took--trying to reach Jorn--was short lived. I didn't feel sorry for her when she gave up, just irritated. Then when she went with Jordam, she sat in the caves while he did all the dangerous stuff. The turning point for me was her turning point--when she went into the room where Auralia's dark images were, grieved, and decided she needed to go back. Good. She finally did something about what she was experiencing.