ARC Review--Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne

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.


I received this eARC for review from the publishers via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.


Livia Blackburne's Midnight Thief had all the promise of being a fantastic fantasy read, but sadly it fell flat for me. I think what threw me off the most was the pacing, it was rather slow. It was still some pretty good storytelling, I just never got sucked in like I wanted to.

Kyra has lived on the streets all her life, she's a talented thief; able to sneak into places all quiet like and stealthy. It attracts the attention of James, leader of the Assassin's Guild who offers her a job to join them. The pay is good and Kyra could definitely use the money. James is not quite the same as we saw him in Poison Dance. Six years have passed and I can barely recognize the man, I don't want to get into details and reveal his character, but let's just say that I can't recognize him as being the same James!

Then there's Tristam who's a Palace knight determined to track down the Demon Rider who killed his friend. The Demon Riders are a strange cast of warriors who ride in on large wildcats and basically terrorize the town. 

Suddenly Kyra and Tristam's paths cross and they're pretty much forever entwined after that moment. It most definitely was not a case of instalove, yet at the same time, I didn't really see a relationship forming between these two. They worked together out of necessity--literally, Kyra is his prisoner. But yet, when a kiss happens, I felt like it was forced because it was expected.

Needless to say this read totally befuddled me. Everything about it really befuddled me. The pacing, again, was just too slow. Kyra and Tristam don't really cross paths until the halfway point and the whole time, I could not figure out what the end goal was meant to be. What are the characters' motivations?! There were some surprising shocks and twists thrown along the way, that were rather good actually, but still. I feel like there's still so much we don't know about the story and perhaps we aren't meant to know this early on, but it really made it hard to enjoy the story itself.

I like a good fantasy novel every now and then, as long as the world-building is good, here it is good. But the pacing, it was just so slow. It really made it hard to enjoy the novel, I almost DNF'd this one, but I was curious to see how it all turned out in the end. Even the ending kind of left me a bit befuddled again. It definitely gives a sense of finality, but this is a series, but I have no idea which direction it's heading in. Sadly, this read just wasn't for me.


Overall Rating 2.5/5 stars


Midnight Thief releases July 8, 2014



4 comments:

  1. I get you on being a bit slow but I personally didn't find it slow I guess because I was so wrapped up in the characters and world building that I loved it. Sorry it didn't work out as well for you Jessica! =(

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  2. I think I liked this more than you, but I also noticed the long time it took for the two protagonists to cross paths.

    ~Mogsy

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  3. Thank god I didn't apply for that one ... I think I would have a problem with the slow storytelling too.

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  4. I've seen a lot of mixed reviews for this book which is sad because like you said this book has tons of potential to be a kickass fantasy book :/ . I'm still debating whether or not to buy it but I'm going with not because slow pacing really isn't for me. Good review though :)

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